My sister says "the strangest things happen to you, Arlene." And she's right. I don't get up in the morning and think "what strange thing can I make happen today" but it seems to be a gift.
Yesterday, Bill and I went to church with Madison. She, on her own, has started going to church. We're so proud of her and disgusted with her parents. She wanted to bear her testimony, so we went with her. It was fun because it was our "home ward" both of us had lived in for awhile and we had lots of friends there. One of James' childhood friends is in the bishopric and that is always fun.
But, the strangest thing happened. We were sitting next to a woman who talked loudly to her husband throughout the whole meeting. He kept saying, "shhh...." Anyway, she bounced up to bear her testimony right at the first of the meeting and went on for 20 minutes about her daughter's move to Texas and the problem with the black movers who kept stealing things.
She actually said, "They stole her makeup. I mean, com'on. Does a black guy need makeup?"
Now. I got my problems. I'm a bigot in areas. But that just enraged me. I've known this woman for 30 years and like her. She's always been a little bit manic, but she was nutso yesterday. I leaned over to Bill and said "oh, honey, stop me if I get up and start to rip her face off."
It bothered the two black families who were sitting in back of me also. They got up and walked out during her testimony. Dang, that bothers.
She finally sat down, and others got up, but she talked even more loudly to her husband, excitedly, and leaned over to my husband and said, "Bill, why didn't you stop me, I can't believe I talked so long, why didn't you cut me off (making that hand gesture on her throat)?"
At that point, I leaned over and whispered loudly, "Helen."
She said, "What?"
I said, "Put a sock in it, I'm trying to listen to the speakers." And I made the cutting gesture. And sat back.
She jumped up and ran out. And the rest of the meeting was quiet.
At the close of the meeting, I was hugging my granddaughter and telling her how much I loved her and how proud I was and I would be back to pick her up after YW (I was going to my ward RS) when somebody grabbed my shoulder and I looked up into Helen's tear streaked face.
She started going on about how I'd ruined the meeting for her, all kinds of stuff that I didn't remember. I snapped, "GROW UP!" and turned away from her as Madison walked off, to say hi to some old friends. She gasped and was quiet for a minute.
But she wouldn't let it--or me go. She went on and on in my face. Luckily for her, I didn't lose my temper. Or she'd have two black eyes and I'd be in jail. I said, "Helen, I like you. But it was incredibly rude of you to talk out loud and I wanted to hear what that guy was saying."
She was off again. You guys, it's entirely possible she was on steroids, she was acting nuts. Finally, I said, "Helen, this isn't the time or the place to have this conversation. I'm leaving."
Now, she was babbling to Bill, also, and her husband was just traumatized, he didn't hear what I'd said to her (we're all hard of hearing LOL). He didn't know what she was bawling about. He kept asking me. And I was just leaving. He finally got that I'd hurt her feelings and when I said, "I have to leave" he said angrily, "yes, you do."
I left the room, leaving (My husband can be the sweetest guy) Bill there with her and her husband. I looked back and Bill had his arms around her patting her back as she cried.
I frankly didn't give a crap. But I was thinking, "drama follows me like a bad cold."
I'm going to send her a card with flowers apologizing for my blantant unkindness. I'm not saying I'm sorry. But I know this woman. She is not a racist, nor is she mean. (I am mean). She is a moron, obviously, but a ditzy, hyperative woman. She is kind at heart, I know.
She must be going through menopause and she is in remission for breast cancer and obviously having some mental problems. For me to have ripped her a new butthole, or to have taken her out in the back and beat the crap out of her, either with my fists or words, would have been to easy and have been my bad.
In fact, I think my unkindness was the more egregious error.
Although, I called her bishop this morning and he said he spent the rest of the day trying to reconcile the two black families and hours in the evening trying to get Helen, who did not realize what she'd said and was mortified, to calm down. He said he thought somebody needed to tell her off. Not in those words, but somebody needed to tell her, anyway.
Last night I kept thinking of all your guys crazy church stories and thought, "well, I sure have a good one now."