As a writer, observing human behavior comes with the job, and sometimes, if you look at your experiences as “research,” it makes aggravating encounters worthwhile.
This past weekend, my husband and I bought some items for our mountain rental house in the Walmart at Mount Pocono, Pennsylvania. We left the store behind a group of five young people all dressed in neat, clean, conservative clothing. The young men wore button down shirts and tan slacks. The young woman wore a high necked blouse and a long skirt. It soon became apparent they were headed for the van marked Christian Life Counseling parked next to our car.
We loaded up our vehicles side by side. There was no way they could have been unaware of our presence. When I was finished, I walked my empty cart about fifteen feet to the nearest cart park and then headed back to my car, where my husband was just getting in the driver’s side. The young Christian counselors – if that’s what they were – finished loading their van and shoved their cart between our two vehicles, completely blocking my front passenger door.
Yup. Because that’s what Jesus Would Have Done.
There was no way for me to get into my car. So I walked their cart to the cart park, too, and they watched me do it as they pulled away.
When’s the last time you observed somebody behaving in a manner completely opposite their advertised appearance?
Have you ever used an observed strange behavior in your writing?
And does writing about it make you feel any better? (It did for me!)