The World’s Most Angry Dry Cleaner
If you read this regularly you may remember a few posts ago I wrote about the World’s Saddest Dry Cleaner who held me hostage as I held my chocolate stained clothes – with tales of his abusive grandfather and his grandmother’s lost inheritance.
I went back into the dry cleaner today, for an alteration to some very awesome pink and grey striped pants. WSDC was there. He was training someone. I’ll call him The Shaking Trainee. I walked in and TST greeted me. I thought he may have Parkinson’s, a rare version that hits you at an age when you still have acne. He was trembling, even in his voice. “Hiiiiii!” he said.
I put my pants on the table and said, “These are new, so don’t clean them but I need an alteration.” WSDC looked on. Really close. I could feel the breath from his nostrils on my fingers. (Don’t worry I wash with hot water and soap constantly.) TST shook and said, “Okay!” And then I jumped because I thought that a Wild Boar had just screamed in my ear and I was surprised to hear one in the basement of a very industrial building. But it was just The World’s (newly named) Most ANGRY Dry Cleaner. He snarled, “GET THE MEASURING TAPE!”
TST shook and jumped back and literally lost his balance, doing a trust-fall backwards into a pile of clothes hanging in plastic that would not be there to catch him. Angry Dry Cleaner rolled his eyes and got the MEASURING TAPE himself.
I began measuring out three inches on one pantlag. TST appeared again at the counter and trying to catch his breath said, “Both legs?”
Angry Dry Cleaner disapproved and came running over. He slammed his hand on the counter. “No! You don’t ask both legs! It’s always both legs! Her legs are not three inches apart from each other!”
TST laughed like “Oh, aren’t I a dummy.” He looked at me. The way you might look at someone, anyone when a person in a van is following you. Help! I smiled, “That’s okay. You never know.” Normally, I’d be thinking, “What a fucking idiot! Of course I need both legs hemmed. I’m not a pegleg!” But when I see someone else being an asshole, and I realize how assholic they look, I’m compelled to be gentle.
TST asked me, “Would you like these cleaned?”
Angry Dry Cleaner put his hands on his face, and mumbled through his fingers, “Mmmmm, SHE SAID ALREADY NO CLEANING!”
TST closed his eyes dramatically and held his head down. He whipsered, “Sorry.” As if he were delivering the news that he’d just run over my puppy. Which would be fine with me since I don’t have a puppy.
Angry Dry Cleaner said to TST, “I hear for alterations that we’re telling customers it takes two to three days.” TST nodded. All three of us made eye-contact. I said, “That’s perfect.” ADC slammed his hand again, “TELL HER THAT IT’S GOING TO BE READY IN TWO TO THREE DAYS!”
TST stuttered, unable to completely form a sentence, “Tttt-tttwoo, or thh, uh, that’s Wednesday?” I said, “Sure. Anytime. I’m in no rush.”
His hand shook so much that it sounded like he was tapping out Morse Code on the register as he printed my receipt. I left and Angry Dry Cleaner gave me a big smile and a “Have a Nice Day!” I heard him say to TST, “I’m leaving now. So you’re own you’re own. You’ll have to memorize everything.”
He said it like it was a threat but I know that TST was probably psyched to have the afternoon in there alone. And like most people with oppresive bosses, you are more confident on your own than with someone yelling and psyching you out.
I left and halfway out the door I felt an urge. I turned back around. I said to ADC, “Be nice to him!” And pointed at TST. No one said anything. I walked out.
I hate ADC. I know his type. I almost felt sad the day he dropped his stories of abuse on me and told me not to be with abusive men. People that overload you with their shit are selfish and most often repeating the same patterns themselves. ADC needs co-dependants anonymous or al-anon or something. He’s clearly abusing others now.
If Jesus really existed and really did what I’ve heard with his preaching and nice-ness and compassion, fuck I don’t know how he did it. If I was God or related to God, I’d be a raging, judgemental bitch just constantly telling people how to live. I know I would be because that’s what I’m like, now. Nevermind how bad I’d be if I had God on my side.
I wish I was an emotional vigilante and there was a jail or a time-out room or a place where you could go, I picture a laundromat, where you could unscrew your head and put it through many machines and just get fucking sane again. I wish it were up to me to citizens arrest people like this. I wish I could go into ADC and go, “Stop. Enough. You’re scaring your trainee. You hate yourself. Let’s go. Come on.”
And then he’d be driven to an undisclosed location for 24/7 therapy and other things. Maybe some yoga.
I know I’m not perfect but I find myself to be perfectly aware of it. And I assume that others walk around in a haze of arrogance and thinking they know it all, which actually points to how I think I know it all. But I’m burdened by it. I want to stop knowing.