Every state has a Crazy Town and on our most recent stretch of road, we seemed to keep passing through it again and again and again.
My first visit was with that mom in Santa Fe who guided me through Crazy Town like no other tour guide ever has (see the previous post). Rather than her apologizing for a misunderstanding, I was name called, insulted, and cut off from communications. Oh boy, was that a crazy Crazy Town visit.
Next, our tenants recently called us to notify us that they broke our toilet tank by falling onto it and completely cracking the tank. The entire toilet needs to be replaced. They refuse to pay for the damage they caused. They also refrained from paying rent for their last month in the unit insisting that we use their security deposit to cover April's rent. We all know that's not how it works. This scenario took place in Crazy Town, Brooklyn. Have you been yet?
Finally, we received a charge of $250 after we checked out of our house rental in Santa Fe. When I followed up with the management company to find out why we were charged, they said it was for a pet cleaning fee. We don't have a pet. We told them that we don't have a pet. They insisted we were lying and that even if we don't own a pet we had one in the house. Channeling in Bill Clinton here... I don't have a pet, I didn't bring a pet in, but maybe I pet a pet. Actually, we didn't even pet any four-legged creatures our entire stay. I tried to explain to them that the wool throw blanket on their couch sheds like a hairy animal but they refused to believe me, insisting that we do in fact have a pet, ultimately charging us $500 for breaking the pet policy on the contract and for a deep cleaning for a pet that doesn't exist.
So, what do you do when arriving at a Crazy Town near you? Below are my top five tips when finding yourself in any of the Crazy Towns throughout the USA.
Imagine the locals in Crazy Town that you make contact with are cartoon figures. This makes the town visit a lot more entertaining. I imagined Yosemite Sam pointing his guns in the air saying "show me your pet".
Don't try to line up perspectives with realities. No matter how hard you will try to make sense of things, you'll quickly learn that the only reality that exists in Crazy Town is that there is no reality. Realities are really based on perspectives. Since we all have different perspectives and tend to hold on to our own firmly, there really is no actual reality. The Sheriff of Crazy Town can be standing across from you on the same street accusing you of having a pet that you don't have. In his reality, you have a pet. In your reality, you do not. So, who is right?
Crazy Town loves its curveballs and its citizens love to throw them at all those who visit. Don't dodge them. They'll just keep throwing more your way. Take the curveballs, entertain the crazies, and then drive the heck out of there as fast as you can.
The crazies in Crazy Town love to make accusations. They may accuse you of being an immigrant, as the mom in the Santa Fe fiasco did. Or they may accuse you of having a pet, even when you do not. Or they may accuse you of spreading the virus when you aren't wearing your mask, even though you are vaccinated. Don't take the accusations personally. Crazies are raised to be on the defensive and are bred to mistrust everyone around them. You won't change their minds so don't bother trying.
When possible, document your experience at any Crazy Town location in the US. Write down what you encountered and share the stories of the native crazies you met along the way. You will delight your friends with stories from your close encounters of the crazy kind.
Crazy Town exists in every neighborhood, city, state, and country on the globe. There is no escaping it. Everyone is privy to a visit and it is unknowingly the most traveled place on the planet. The most important thing to keep in mind is that the rallies of soldiers in these towns are always recruiting. Do not submit. Do not give in, no matter how adorable the cartoon figures you conjure up seem to be.
Now, thanks to the crazies in Crazy Town, Santa Fe, I am actually itching for a Golden Retriever. A beautiful, always seemingly smiling, long-haired, and superbly shedding Golden Retriever. One that will lick my face and bite my toes and make my kids squeal with delight. If we do opt for a puppy, he/she will always be our souvenir from Crazy Town, Santa Fe.