Working in a mall setting can be interesting at times. You see a wide range of people from extraordinarily normal to extraordinarily bizarre. What I saw on Sunday gave me a flashback to the movie "What's Eating Gilbert Grape."
And as the blog post title infers, I laughed.
On some level this makes me a bad person in this instance. While there was humor in the situation, the cause of said humor was pathetic. I'm trying to justify laughing as a defense trigger when you see something bizarre, disgusting, and sad all rolled up in one package. Laughing was a cover for the revulsion I felt.
So where is this going, huh?
There is a store located directly across from us that caters to shoppers of the female persuasion. It's not a store for the petite shopper, at least if they're shopping for themselves.
(Man, there's just no way to come out of this looking good for me is there? I'm truly not trying to offend anyone with a weight issue.
But a weight issue was the crux of the problem.
A woman entered the store, unseen by me at the time, looking to add to her wardrobe. Apparently things went downhill rather quickly when the store didn't have her size in stock. And that's when I saw her. She was furious, and loud.
She accused the staff at the store of hiding clothes that would fit her in the stockroom. She berated them for being too lazy to help her. They were conspiring against her in her own words. Lawsuits were threatened. She. Was. Totally. Out. Of. Control.
She was biggest person I've seen in real life. I've seen a few television shows with the bedridden obese person and that's what came to mind to me. I was amazed that she was capable of being mobile in all honesty. And I laughed, but it wasn't funny. It was horrifying in a sense.
Yet I laughed.
And now I feel bad about it.
Security was called and this just sent this lady higher into orbit. She started to swing her arms at them in an attempt to hit one of them. (This is actually when I laughed.) Every time she swung her arms her body twisted 180 degrees and I thought she'd eventually fall. Thankfully that never happened.
The police were called. The lady was actually arrested. Disturbing the peace and assault charges pending from what I've gathered. She was taken to jail in her own vehicle. A specialty type of van to accommodate her. Her companion, who brought her to the mall, had to drive to the police station with an officer aboard the vehicle. Because of this rather unusual arrest a total of four police vehicles were used in this arrest. Two were in front of the van, two were behind the van, as she was taken to jail. All in the name of safety I was told.
And the saddest part of this? This lady has shopped at this store for years. But never in person. The store manager told me this was her first appearance in the store. This lady was well aware that her size of clothing wasn't stocked in the store. They always accommodated her by special orders, which probably aren't going to happen any more by the sound of things.
The staff at this store were shell-shocked. Both the manager and the other lady working there yesterday stated they've talked to her on the phone numerous times in the past when she ordered clothes. She was always pleasant to deal with over the phone apparently.
So now I sit here wondering what possessed this woman to do this. I'm also sitting here wondering what possessed me to laugh as well. The situation was bizarre, but truly not funny, now that I've had time to reflect on it. Just very sad.