I was buying food for my cat parasite today (as well as bodily necessities for myself and Megan) and was leaving the local Kroger, contented, bag-heavy, prepared to walk home and feed my cat parasite before she made good on her threat to destroy the world. My house. A roll of toilet paper.
As I was leaving the store, I noticed a man who left just before me carrying a case of Bud Light. Then a Kroger employee came jogging out of the store and caught the guy in a headlock.
The Guy: “Okay, man. Okay. I get it.”
The Kroger Guy: “Drop it or I’m going to crank you.”
(Full disclosure: I have no idea what that means.)
Short story short, I’ve never been that close to a crime in progress before. I’ve never seen someone shoplift and been a witness to their busting. And what are the chances that I’d be there at that exact time? A few steps to the right and I’d have been pushed out of the way in the hurry to get that man back here! Right now!
Of course, it’s not as though shoplifting is a rare event. It makes sense that I would, at some point in my life, be around when a shoplifter was caught. I imagine I’ve been in stores a number of times when a crime drama was being played out, but simply on the other side of the store or behind close doors and I, unaware, innocent as a (non-poisonous) butterfly.
But most things in the world aren’t rare events.
The thing about writing (Ha! Catch that shift there!) is that the goal is to write about those events that we don’t see every day and making them available to those who haven’t yet had a chance to see them.
Well, that’s one goal of writing. The other is to make the commonplace new and strange.
Though it is really just the same aim: presenting what we don’t notice in a way we can’t help but.
In other news, a song by Carl Sagan: