Crazy People and Coffee

I spent the afternoon at Tillicum Mall, just hanging out.  I had driven Jane to work, and was killing time until I had to pick her up again. I went to the library, picked up a handful of dvds, and a few books, two thrillers by Ken Bruen, and Tales of Ordinary Madness, by Charles Bukowski.  I already had one by Bruen, Sanctuary, and  I sat in the cafeteria at Safeway finishing it off, then opening the Bukowski.  An old bastard, scraggly beard, jacket with HMCS Nanaimo on it, and  the inevitable baseball cap.  He nursed his coffee and looked at me, and I thought, oh shit, here comes another crazy.  Sure enough, he starts talking and says he remembers everything from every paper he ever read…Vancouver Sun, Province,  Globe & Mail, Daily Times and Daily Colonist, when those two were separate papers.  I worked for the Colonist, so I said I remembered when they were separate.  He said any page any date and he would know what was on it, so I toyed with the idea of mentioning January 26, 1966, page 3, but, since I could not remember what was there then, I thought that was unfair.  So I just listened to him ramble.  Well, not ramble, just repeat the same memory thing over and over.  Another coffee crazy.  I have collected a few.  I seem to attract them, they know somehow that I will not put them down.  There was this guy selling appliances and my then-wife and I had arranged for a purchase, and I ended up going down, and it turned out he was late late late.  But i had nothing better to do so I just hung around until he turned up and he did the deal and then invited me for coffee, his treat.  An offer I could not refuse.  So we sat over coffee, and chatted, and then fell silent.  After a really nice period of silence in which i was free to examine the waitress and assorted female customers, he suddenly looked across the table and, quite calmly, said “I communicate with people through their minds.”  And I just nodded, quite willing to accept his version of reality, at least while the coffee lasted.  He told me he and a group of salesmen and businessmen like him had a group that communicated telepathically, helping each other out in business deals.  He seemed perfectly sane, so it was either accept it, or accept that I was insane.  So that was one.  But, years before, I was sitting at 1230 midnight at Phil’s in Victoria, and this guy sitting just down the counter turns to me and says “you are the reincarnation of Russian Bill, who was hanged for horsetheft in Tombstone, Arizona in 1888”.  He also went on that B.C. premier W.A.C. Bennett was the reincarnation of Genghis Khan.  It all made a kind of crazy sense.  He said people tended to reincarnate together.  He never told me who Bennett incarnated as  in Tombstone Arizona.  Maybe the guy who strung up Russian Bill.  And he never told me who I had been when Genghis was around.  Which was really my big disappointment with that whole conversation.  This kind of encounter always seems to happen over coffee.  Perhaps there is some kind of meeting of the lei lines (did i spell lei right, or is it lay) at each coffee shop.  I always have had a reverent feeling for Starbucks and Serious Coffee.

Published in: on March 7, 2012 at 3:49 am  Leave a Comment  
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