The first man came up to j and my car while we were stopped at a red light. He earnestly asked us for a ride to the El, and told us he'd give us a dollar for our troubles. J. and I both incorrectly pegged him for a socially "unique" professor, and let him in for a ride. The first thing he did was confess that he wasn't taking his Lithium anymore. I asked him if he was bipolar, and he replied that he was, sort of, but more schizophrenic. Then he proceeded to tell us a story about how he was a virgin and he kept trying to have positive interactions with women, but they went poorly. He gave us an example (I can't remember the wording now, but I concluded at the end that I'd have wanted to slap him if I'd been the woman in question.)
By then j. and I were both wondering what we'd gotten ourselves into, but I was also tickled because I love eccentric.
The man proceeded to ask us about opera and whether we believed in God. He then asked j. what the strongest evidence of God in our physical world was. Quite a lot for one short drive.
I got to sell a couple of lamps to an incredibly spastic English professor the other day too. I thought she was going to combust she was so frantic. She flipped out that she couldn't remember her bank account number so her check to me was going to be invalid. I pointed out that all checks have the account number printed on them, while simultaneously scratching my head in confusion.
Just now on the street a man came up to me and asked about my bike- is it three-speed? single speed? I told him it's a cruiser, and he then asked about my tattoo. He told me he could read the Hebrew-like vowels, and I explained the tattoo. He said he thought people should get henna tattoos in case they had regrets, and told me I should cover my arms in henna tattoos. Somehow this segued into how he sensed I'd be good at making faberge eggs. I told him my hands shake too much, and went on my merry way.
I have no idea if he was a professor. Most of these encounters could go either way. Professor or street crazy.. a thin line called "PhD".
Hmph, and people in RI acted like my mild eccentricities were a burden.