Every once in a while (not as often as you'd think), a mentally ill person will walk in the store and cause a little scene. They're usually harmless. They just need to get something off their chest.
Tonight, it was a white haired older man with a ball cap, with a recent but healing gash on his cheek, who's been in before. He was talking as he was walking in and pointing at books, and as he got closer I could make out, "Today, people are buying these books. This one...and this one...and this orange one..."
It reminded me of that story on This American Life, where a stranger on a subway platform, who's obviously a little off, is pointing at every person and saying whether or not they can stay or go. The narrator of the story talks about how when a stranger talks to you, it's imbued with a special kind of importance. Even if the stranger is crazy. The narrator desperately wanted to be told he could stay.
I wondered if the person in the store would point at me. Are people buying me today?