PEOPLE ARE STRANGE, WHEN YOU’RE A STRANGER,

Faces look ugly when you’re alone. When you’re strange, faces come out of the rain, when you’re strange….

Being an avid rock hound, aka a lapidarist, someone who hunts for agates and jaspers and so forth in the forests and deserts and cuts them into finished stones, for jewelry and all that, I naturally joined the little local rockhound club out here and proceeded to make friends among the members, or at least am trying to. The effort is sketchy and ongoing at this point but I’ve only been a member for a few months, so we’ll see how it goes.

There’s this young guy, I’d guess around 28 years old, and his wife who looks to be about 60 years old, yes, I’m not kidding, who invited me out to see his place this last Sunday, which was incidentally Mother’s Day. So I went, and was given the grand tour. It’s a little under an acre and all the land hereabouts is semi-arid, but they apparently have good groundwater where he’s at, about 15 miles away from my place, and the whole parcel is covered with plants, bushes and trees.

He right away took credit for the presence of all the trees, even though the trunks of them indicated at least 20 years of age and he and his wife had been there only a year and a half, but I said nothing, just let him rave. At the end of this little tour in which he told me the names of each and every single plant on the place, we went inside the house where he then read to me a sales presentation he’d written, seeking financing for his invention.

Ah. THIS is why he invited me out. Not to be friendly, not because he liked me and wanted to encourage a friendship, Noooo, he invited me out to solicit funds from me for his invention, which is nothing more than a solar-powered dew trap to catch water from the air. His sales premise was presented first, his reason why his invention would revitalize the poor economy in our area. Get this:

Free water. He’s proposing that out here in this semi-desert, we could squeeze so much water out of the air that we could all have free water, all the water we wanted. In the first place, NO, you might be able to do that in Florida in the summer when the humidity goes off the charts, but out here? In this dry air? Not a chance, but that’s only part of it. He claims that free water would free up so much money otherwise paid for water bills that all the meth addicts out here would stop using meth and go back to work because all that extra money would cause lots of new businesses to open up and lots of new jobs to be available and Prosperity Would Return And Yappa Yappa Yappa.

You can offer jobs to meth addicts all day long, and they’ll work long enough to get paid, spend it all on meth, and not show back up for work the next day, or week, or month….. Our water bills out here in some areas can be pretty high, up to $150 a month, which is a lot. But many of us have wells and the only cost is well maintenance and electricity to power the pump.

Bottom line, the guy is nuts, and it was rude as hell to con me into thinking I was invited there out of friendship and interest in me, so I drove all the way out, only to be hit up for money. What an asshole, huh? It became apparent early on to me that neither one of them was showing any interest in me at all. They didn’t ask me a single question about myself, it was all about him, mostly, what he did, what he knew, yappa yappa yappa.

I knew he had to be kind of odd, being married to a woman at least twice his age, but I thought the guy was a serious rock hound like myself, and he’s not. He’s into finding stuff he can sell. Yet, he doesn’t have an Internet connection and no means of selling anything out there in the middle of the sticks like he is. The community he lives in is known to be really heavily populated with meth addicts, and when I said something unkind to them about meth addicts I noticed they didn’t take that real kindly. So there you go. People are strange when you’re a stranger and even when you aren’t.

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