Buy the Book Monsoon Madness
Odd Signs
poetry, short stories and opinions
Buy the Book!!  Monsoon Madness.

by Gae Rusk

Back from PDX, Portland in travel-talk. So glad to be home, but I like it there, too, and this trip I saw something new, something weird: a man arguing with an invisible friend at my PDX departure gate.

Not so unusual, you say. There are more and more such people on our sidewalks as the global population surges and the percentage of madness soars.

But the weird thing was, this man was rich. He wasn’t some lost soul wearing soiled garments and pushing a stolen Safeway cart. Instead, he was all Ralph Laurened, all leather loafered, all groomed for Best in Show at the kennel for fiscally fortunate breeds, the CEO and CFO and CPA breeds. That, you see, is what made it weird: that he looked VIP instead of Street.

Turns out, he had a phone inserted inside his ear canal. Turns out, he wasn’t Deaf with a hearing aid, he was Hearing with a hands free communication aid, and he was standing smack in the middle of Portland International taking a call, all shouting and gesticulating to the air like no one else was there.

I had a moment of realization about what was wrong with this well-groomed, alpha male. He suffers from the newest socio-mental disorder to strike humans: a postmodern form of Ambulatory Schizophrenia, in which he actually is talking to invisible friends.

What’s new and different is a socio-mental disorder striking the rich instead of the poor, and so publicly. Proof of this? The only people I see so far with this problem are affluent men who should know better.


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