The Crazy Magnet—Clark Humphrey

It’s not easy being a Crazy Magnet. 

I know you probably never believed it WAS, but you might have assumed there was at least as much wild antic fun as there was scary drama. Maybe when I’m a few years older it will seem that way in retrospect. 

But for now, it’s still fresh and tender. Not tender as in sweet; tender as in sore.

Which crazy should I start with? Not the regular everyday crazy. Not the one who proclaimed me to be her honorary gay friend even as I was hitting on her (or trying to). 

And not the actually diagnosed as “crazy” crazy; complete with the wrist cutting and the stints in the psych ward and the insistence that a total stranger had bugged apartment and was listening in on everything. That would be too easy.

It’s the in-between crazy that’s the most, er, “interesting.”

It’s the crazy that seems normal until you accidentally step on a Crazy Cue. 

Like when A. asked if I could be with her when she went to a doctor’s appointment. 

She told me when and where. She said it was probably nothing, but she wanted someone to hold her hand just in case. 

I asked what I thought was an innocent question.

I asked how long it would take.

Zero to inflamed in 0.3 seconds. That’s how long it took.

“How DARE you ask that! I pour my heart out to you and all you can think of is how inconvenient it’ll be. It’s my fucking LIFE at stake [it was really a routine follow up about a broken foot], and all you can say is [impersonating a flippant, sarcastic voice I had NOT used] ‘how long will it take’. My heart just SANK straight down to the FLOOR. Just LEAVE. NOW. NOW!”

I left. She slammed the door after me.

Sure enough, at 11:45 the next night—she had no sense of other people’s schedules—I got drunk-dialed. No, she didn’t apologize, or explain herself, or ask me to explain myself. She went right ahead with new news (foot progressing steadily) and another date invite (lunch and errands, which I knew would turn into drinks and errands and drinks). 

You ask why I kept seeing her.

After the bloody mary breakfasts, and the at-home guzzling of plastic-jug vodka with Diet Pepsi.

After the half dazed road trips to Poulsbo and Lynnwood.

After she got kicked off the Leavenworth Christmas train for being disorderly (thankfully I wasn’t with her that day).

Long after I stopped having sex with her (yes, that was even crazier). 

Even after the 14-hour date that started at a QFC, wound up at a suburban cardroom, and eventually led to my minor panic attack.

I haven’t stopped asking myself the same question.

But when a guy told me about the L.A. strip club called Crazy Girls, I told him I’d never had to pay for that. Not with money anyway.

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About bbcstudiowrites

This blog is me archiving the BBC Studio Writers Workshop.

Posted on November 20, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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