Tuesday, September 21, 2010
I was a working dancer-singer-performer, sometimes, and most of the time I remembered to be grateful for it. It was usually easy to remember because I was also the struggling actor type, at other times, and I worked in restaurants between gigs.
The good thing about waiting tables is that you meet a lot of weird people.
The bad thing about waiting tables is that you meet a lot of weird people.
So, I continue to be grateful now that I have a full time, regular job for the first time in my life, no longer dependent on gigs as a server.
I work in the admissions department for a career college, assisting students with the application and enrollment process.
Today I got a phone call from Chicago, from Megan's mom. I had spoken to Megan on the phone before, more than once. She is a 'high maintenance type,' taking up a lot of time, asking question after question about our school program, and without getting any closer to actually applying to the school.
Her mother had the usual questions about length of the program, student housing, and financial aid. Every time I tried to answer one of her questions though, she would interrupt me.
"She's schizophrenic! She's schizophrenic!" she would whisper into the phone, sotto voce.
At first I wasn't sure if it was the mother whispering frantically to me, or if it was Megan on another line, trying to warn me.
The frenetic whispering continued. "She's schizophrenic! She's schizophrenic!"
Paranoia paralyzed my mind for about two seconds as the prospect of demon possession entered my thoughts.
Rational deduction, however, led me to believe that Megan's mother was just going through the motions of asking me the usual questions in an effort to appease her daughter, to make Megan think that she was taking her desire to attend a school in Los Angeles seriously.
"She schizophrenic! She's schizophrenic!" she continued.
I was so very tempted to ask, "Are you telling me that your daughter, Megan, is schizophrenic? Or is it one of your other personalities telling me that you're schizophrenic?"
And here I thought I had left all of the freaks and weirdos behind when I finally stopped waiting tables for good.