30 October 2008

Attracting crazy people

By: Jessica B.
Tagged: Chicago, CTA, Random

I am a freak magnet. If there is a crazy or wildly insane person with a certain radius, they find me and somehow lose their sh*t at me. This point has been agreed up on by several of my friends. The phrase, “that only happens to you” is said to me a lot.

I have zero idea what I wear or do that attracts these people to me. Perhaps it’s some sort of sick pheromone that brings them in my direction, without me knowing it.
For example, over a year ago, a woman bumped into me on the sidewalk across from a CVS. I told her to watch where she was going (she didn’t even fake apologize) and the woman promptly turned and started s-c-r-e-a-m-i-n-g at me. She used words I can’t even say on this blog. Yes, my comment might have antagonized her a bit but she got so out of control that my friend Ryan had to physically hold her back from attacking me.  
Then, last January, I went grocery shopping with my dad and an elderly woman at the Jewel began screaming swear words at me when I moved my cart around hers and dinged her cart by accident. I did apologize after it happened but that didn’t stop the woman from tearing into me. Dad looked horrified but I just sighed, as it did not surprise me in the least.
Yesterday even, I was sitting on the bus, en route to work, and a woman behind me grabbed or petted my hair as I was getting ready to leave. To be fair, there is a 50 percent chance my hair was grabbed by accident in the crush to exit the bus, but there was a definite grab and hold before my hair was relinquished. Maybe the Bumble & Bumble shampoo I use does smell that good. People are apparently compelled to hold it.
See, I bring out freakish behavior! Watch out if you’re ever around me because I can’t guarantee what will happen. You’ve been warned. 
FYI: Happy Halloween everyone! I’m not a costume person so I will be dressing up as a young-professional-woman-dressed-for-casual-Friday. I hope no one steals that idea.
Big Halloween weekend plans for anyone else? Costume choices or ideas? I’m always open to hearing people’s creative choices. One year a friend made a costume out of an old moving box and went as “box of wine” with Franzia painted on the side Genius.
Reader note: Thank you SO much everyone for your kind comments on my rockin’ legwarmers. Everyone’s sweet comments really made my day :) I’m glad you also enjoyed the 80s TV flashback, but I did forget “Saved by the Bell,” which was a horrible oversight. I will post a link on Sunday to the pattern for the legwarmers in case you want to make them yourself. It might be tough to knock out in a weekend but definitely in two weeks, depending how tall you want them to be. You guys are awesome!


  1. Frank says:

    I have the same problem. I had a woman freak on me on a plane for “staring at her daughter” (I was asleep) I had a freak attck me on a bus in Australia while I was minding my business. Ive had at least 3 friends just go whacko for no reason and start
    screaming at me

    I think we do attract these people as my friends also note the strangeness of these events

  2. Kayleigh says:

    I too, have a freak magnet. Nothing like having all the crazies follow you around wherever you go! Chicago needs to cut down on all the crazy.

  3. stealthnerd says:

    Ah, nothing like the freak pheromone. Sometimes I think I have that too…it’s fun, isn’t it?

  4. Mega says:

    I need to just follow you around for a day so I can witness a crazy finding you. Then I’d laugh and point and be like “yeah yeah, be more crazy, wooo!”

  5. Athena Valentine says:

    I’m not a freak magnet but for some reason I can get people I don’t know to tell me their life story. It just pours out like word vomit and then I end up finding out some tramatizing stories. Hope you have a good Halloween! :)

  6. EP says:

    Haha. We should definitely be friends, because I attract the crazys whenever I’m out on assignment at work. Seriously. I don’t know what happens or why they find me, but it happens a few times a week. And while no one yells at me, these people? Really creepy.

    I hope you had a good Halloween!

  7. Jessica says:

    Haha, I like your Halloween costume.

    For some reason, I’m not too into Halloween this year…idk why!

  8. Megkathleen says:

    Yes, I think it must be a crazy pheromone.

    And I’m sorry…but I stole your costume idea.

  9. Angela says:

    Wow, that’s really weird! I’d be so afraid of who I’d bump into!

  10. Rachel says:

    I think this post explains our friendship. I am not the most sane bunny in the pumpkin patch.

  11. Coconut says:

    Flashers, crazy ladies guarding the dryer…I definitely have to agree with your friends that you attract crazy people.

  12. Daisy says:

    Oh dear those people sound horrendous! I seem to have a fair few encounters with the crazy myself, but they’re usually less angry and more like the hair holding one- a guy in Chinatown in London came up to me and just held onto my forearm and just stood there…I was so spaced out that it took at least a minute for me to realise what was going on and remove his grip!! I was so worried anyone I knew might have seen us there and thought I was cheating on the colonel with a Chinese man of advancing years!

  13. Katelin says:

    okay that is just strange. i don’t think any freakish behavior came out of anyone when we were at blogher, so maybe it was just an off weekend for you, haha.

    hope nothing too crazy happens to you tonight, it being halloween and all, and all the crazies come out! woooooooo. haha.

  14. Nilsa says:

    Welcome to living in the big city where the freakish come out on more days than just Halloween!

  15. LBluca77 says:

    I at times am a freak magnet too, but I have never been yelled at by strangers the way you have. That’s scary.

    Great costume idea, but I am sorry to say I did steal your idea today.

    Happy Halloween!!

  16. laurwilk says:

    I loooove the boxed wine costumes! Especially when they actually have wine that people can drink from. A couple kids did that when I was in college. Naturally, the ‘spout’ was right by their ‘junk’.

    I think Saved by the Bell started at the very, very end of the 80’s. I think of it as a 90’s show!

    HOLY COW. Side note. When I was back at my alma mater, the kids have 90’S NIGHT at the bar instead of 80’S NIGHT! I almost died!

  17. thatShortChick says:

    your friend’s box of wine costume sounds awesome! you must share what he/she went as this year!

    i attract some crazies as well. a bald, alcoholic, toothless, amputee in a wheelchair was hitting on me at my cousin’s friend’s graduation party (last year) and wouldn’t leave me alone for the entire night. the scars from that night still have not entirely healed.

  18. Maki says:

    Wow Jess! You’re crazy people magnet – which includes me:) LOL

    I just gave you an award.

    Happy Halloween Sweetie!

  19. Katie says:

    Ahh! That would totally freak me out if some random stranger grabbed my hair.

  20. lifeintheleftlane says:

    Man, that’s kind of creepy and funny! Sorry the weirdos flock to you.

    I have 2 costumes for Halloween. The first is a video game fighter girl and the other is a dead homecoming queen. I love Halloween!

  21. Fabulously Broke says:

    …. there is a freaky hair fetish going around, isn’t there? *freaks out*

    Best line ever:
    Maybe the Bumble & Bumble shampoo I use does smell that good. People are apparently compelled to hold it.


  22. Mandy says:

    You’re not alone! I’ve had my hair petted too. On more than one occassion. I’m glad to know that this happens to someone else….

    Plans for the weekend, roadtripping to Columbus for a Halloween party/Birthday party, lots of drinking. As for a costume, I’ll be sporting the same ladybug wings that I wore last year and may or may not have put on my dog a few days ago. I have zero creativity when it comes to costumes and refuse to shell out $50 for one.

  23. ...love Maegan says:

    wow..WOW. I mean, you hit her carT ..not her car. but still, screaming??!?!?! I actually get myself in similar trouble whilst yelling and waving my arms frantically at other drivers on the road. …many a man has gotten out of his car to yell at me through my window…it’s scary …but somehow, I cannot stop :)

  24. The Odd Duck says:

    Oh wow and I thought I attracted the crazies. I don’t have enough hair to grab so I don’t have to worry about that one.

    My best story would be a double date at Olive Garden. Our waiter, a very very dirty man, would always put his hand on my shoulder and once let it slide to caress my back. *shudder*

    I’m going trick or treating with my girlfriend and her daughter tomorrow night along with judging a costume contest at the elementary school I teach at. This year, I chose to be a clown.

  25. andyhannon says:

    I would so make leg warmers if I didn’t have such weird long legs. And would generally look insane.

    My favorite(sarcasm) thing to happen to me was a very busty(and rather dirty AND smelly) drunk lady on the train grinding herself up on me as I attempted to get off at my stop. I figured I’d yell something foolish like “I’m ONLY 17!!” But she saw right through my charade and continued to rub me the wrong way.


  26. LJ says:

    Wow you do attract the crazy peeps! If someone patted my hair that I didn’t know, I’m sure how I would react, probably not cool.

    I just saw I guy walking down the street dressed up as a Pinata. You could tell the costume was homemade, he looked like a colorful papermache pinata. It was amazing! His girlfriend was a ice cream cone and it was awesome as well. She had a cherry on her head.

    I was lazy this year ran into the Halloween store and ran out with a pirates costume! Yep super imaginative I know! It was pretty much slim pickings and it was one of the only customs where all the pieces (dress, belt, bandanna) were actually in the bag and not missing.