Monday, November 2, 2009

Mr. Quirkster

Do you have any quirks? Things that you do that make you just a tiny bit OCD? I only have one. Maybe two. The first is that every night when I go to bed I have to fix my pillows. I sleep with three. Two I lay on and one I hug. I have to fluff them up and make sure the opening of the pillow case is facing the outside of the bed. Then I stack them up. And I lay on all of them. I lay there on my back for a few minutes then I turn on my right side, grab my hugging pillow (which was on top of the pile, of course)and drift off to night-night. This happens every night.

The other is that I'm really disorganized. My house isn't always clean. Well, it's not always tidy. It's clean. Toilets are clean. Clothes are clean. People are clean. But it's usually cluttered. I'd like to blame it on my 1 year-old but really? It's always been this way. So, my quirk. When I do laundry I have to hang Avery's clothes on only pink and white hangers. Hayden's go on red, dark blue or green hangers. Harley's go on light blue hangers. And you must not deviate. I came downstairs one night while Tavis was (miracle) hanging clothes and I very nicely said, "actually, Harley's clothes go on these light blue hangers". Well he freaked! "You should be grateful you're getting any help at all!!!" And he was right but still, I'd rather do it myself than look at Avery's shirt hanging on a green hanger.

So why am I asking you about your quirks? Because I met a woman a while ago that was so damn weird that I just have to share this with you.

I went to a Relief Society get-together. It was "cookies on the lawn". Basically, bring cookies, sit in a circle with a bunch of women, eat cookies, gab.

So this woman arrives and she's got a plastic baggie on her right hand. On her other hand is a Wal-Mart sack and hanging off that arm is another Wal-Mart sack (kinda like a purse). And inside that Wal-Mart sack is another Wal-Mart sack and a cel phone. Well of course she sits right next to me. (I purposely didn't sit by my friend so I could meet other people, which left an empty seat next to me.) People, the smell coming off this woman was unlike anything I've ever smelled in my life. It was thick. It got in my lungs and just about choked me. It jumped into my nose and clung there as if it was afraid it would be forced to live with her again. At this point I grabbed my freshly washed hair and smelled it for the remainder of the night.

So I asked a friend who was on my other side, "what the crap is up with the bags?" This woman is in the RS presidency so I figured she'd have some dirt on her. (Pun?) She said she was new and had OCD. YA THINK????? I asked her, "does part of her OCD include an aversion to WATER?????"

So I told her, "make no mistake, I'll be getting to the bottom of these bags before the night is over. Because I'm just bold enough to say, 'what's with the bags?'"

Well the night progressed and one gal in the RS presidency said that she wanted to go around the circle and introduce ourselves, mostly because not everyone knew me. (I hadn't been good at going to church or these gatherings) So the first woman goes. "Hi, I'm Blah Blah* and I live down there...we've got the yard with all the trees in it...we've been trimming them...etc."

So like five more people go then it's my turn then it's Bag Lady. She says, "hi my name is BagLady* (yes, one word) (and without even taking a breath she continues) and I had that same thing happen to me with the trees like you were talking about. I was outside with my daughter and right when we came in a branch broke off our tree right where we'd been standing."

Wow. That was a mouthful. It was almost like she'd been ready to BURST waiting for all these other women to go so she could tell that story. So I ask, "is your last name Lady?"

BL: "No."
Me: (.........okaaaaaay.....)
BL: "Just BagLady. Bag if you're in a hurry. BagLady if you've got a little extra time."
Me: (......okaaaaaaay......)

So on we go around the circle and BagLady has a freakin' anecdote (DeNae, is that the right spelling for that word?) for every single thing people say! You'd think that someone with this apparent social disorder would be a little more reserved but NO!!! She yapped through the whole go-in-the-circle thing!

Finally it's cookie time. She walks over to the table which was right next to Blah Blah who asks her, "so...what's with the bags?"

Me: (Booo-yaah! Now I don't have to ask!!!)

BL: "Oh...I'm just crazy."
BB: "No you're not. What is it?"

So then she comes and sits back next to me and proceeds to tell the other gal all about her condition. She went through a major chemical change during the birth of her youngest child. TWENTY-ONE years ago. She said she was genetically pre-disposed to mental illness because her grandmother had basically gone crazy when her grandfather died. See? This is where the story stops being funny. Because I really don't want to make fun of a real illness. Clearly, she's sick. And the saddest part about it is that she knows she's sick. She's got like 5 kids. I wonder what they think about it? How do you watch your mom go through this? How do you not say, "mom, what's with the bags?"

But the question I have is: Is a Wal-Mart sack really cleaner than just, y'know, washing your hands?

So tell me. What are your quirks? Are you "just a quirk or two away from full-on dementia"? (That's one of my favorite lines from Seinfeld. Elaine to Jerry)

*Names have been changed to protect the clinically insane.


Kristina P. said...

Finally! You told the Smelly Cat story!!

I think that everyone has some OCD tendencies. If I'm on the elliptical, and I can see clothes in the closet that have fallen off the hanger, I can't focus, and I have to stop my exercise and fix them.

I miss you! I want to cash in that breakfast raincheck.

Vanessa said...

You really know how to tell a are so hilarious.

I'm obsessed w/hand sanitizer. I put it on all the time. You know, with Swine Flu and all.

Jessica said...

Gross bag lady. I am a smell person with a quick gag would have caused a riff at RS for sure.

I comb fringe on rugs. It drives me crazy if it is messed up. There are a lot more, but this is your blog. :)

Sarah said...

For years my sisters have been making fun of me for my little OCD things that I do. A few years ago we got talking about what kind of little quirks we all had. I learned that they are just as crazy as I am, if not worse! I am very cluttered too, however if you look in my closets and cupboards they are totally organized. Now that is crazy, keep all of the areas that are not seen by the public nice and clean, and everything else is a mess.

Casey said...

She can't be that crazy if she recognizes that she's crazy. Right?

I'm all about the three pillows and I'll do you one better, my hug pillow is actually one of our couch cushions that I take to bed every night and put back on the couch every morning.

DeNae said...

"Anecdote" is indeed spelled correctly. But at the time of this comment you have misspelled "night" in your 7th paragraph.

And you know I sleep with a "hugger", too. I think it's a family tradition.

And as cluttered as my house is (hey, I have a 7-year all of my utensils have to be stacked biggest to smallest in the drawer. And the knives face the same way.

Oh, and I keep the money in my wallet facing the same way, upright, and largest bills to smallest running from back to front.

And I notice when people misspell words on their blogs.

(I'm up to 6,200 words on my NaNo thing!! That's like over 3,000 bumper stickers!! Yessss!

Michael, Dlaina & Ethan Lindsay said...

uh...I know that lady and she is crazy she used to always come into wallabys when i worked there when i was like 16 years oldand we called her "baglady" didn't know she actually called herself that it is so weird and I hated when she came in sad huh... funny small world!

The only thing really I'm OCD about is Ethan being messy/dirty and I've gotten alot better but I hate when his clothes are dirty or his face is a mess sometimes i do his hair in a little mohawk thing and you better believe there is hairspray in my purse when it falls i can spike it right back up...but he is a 2 1/2 year old boy I'm getting better...

wendy said...

OH YEAH BABY, that's me, just one quirk away.
and to top it off, my kids have informed me I will NOT be living with them. Off to some "nut home" I will be going.
RUDE......after all I did for the little snots.

But the good thing about being close to dimentia or don't really know it. You still feel normal. That's the cool thing about getting old. You can do the damndest (sp) things and get away with it all in the name of "she's just getting old".

my quirks.....I have to check the stove burners like 3 times before going to bed. I have to SAY they are off.
I have to FEEL that they are off.
then I look just one more time to make sure what I said and what I saw was true.

and then it is a real dilema about going pee before going to bed then taking a drink.....then I think I should probably go pee again cause I just took a drink.....then I have to take another drink........
you get the picture
You asked.
love ya

AS Amber said...

DeNae, I knew I could count on you to help me out! And I believe it was you that turned me on to the hugging pillow thing when I came up to Seattle and spent a couple weeks when I was 17.

And I do the money thing, too. Working at a bank for 6 years forced that one on me.

Ryan and Jacki Andrew said...

I have a very long list of quirks but I will only admit to a couple. I have to count everything. I know how many steps it will take me to get somewhere and I don't like to be off. (46 steps to the bathroom from my desk at work, 14 steps to the fax machine) I also have to check the iron 40x a day. I check it and then repeat to myself 3 times (again the counting thing) that it is off. I will then have my kids check for me just in case I was wrong. I think I am nuts.

M-Cat said...

How funny. Sorta. Okay your telling the story was funny. Mental Illness isn't I guess.

What's even more funny? I was just thinking about a post listing my Top 10 quirks.
Stay tuned.

Craig and Cricket said...

okay, I started to crack up while reading your post...I am pretty sure I scared my kids to death. As for quirks, there are way to many to mention...thanks for the laugh

Sher said...

There is a special place in my heart for your Bag Lady.
Any new interesting storied about her since then?

and I have no quirks. I'm very nearly perfect!

Emma said...

Funny and sad!!! I sleep with two pillows.

I've been thinking what my quirks are and I can't think of any, I'm sure I have them I just don't know I do!!

Moody said...

Well, I'm pretty quirkless according to the standards in your comments. I don't check burners or over use hand sanitizer. I think I'm too lazy to have quirks. It would take too much energy for all that! As for baglady that's just a bit freaky, I'm not gonna lie.

tiburon said...

I freaking love it. I want to meet baglady.

I have so many quirks I couldn't write them all out here. But I do think I have oCD a little bit...