I saw a man scampering like a dog with his tail between his legs. Having walked similarly a few minutes ago myself, I knew the reason for his unusual gait. But his robes piqued my interest; a patient was allowed to roam outside after sunset.
“Hey, how come you’re here?” I inquired.
“Ahhhh, sweet God, I needed that. Are you happy now?” he said with a sharp tone.
It was then that he turned his head and noticed me. He gave it a couple of yanks and presented me his full body. “What do you want?”
“I was wondering why you’re allowed outside after dark.”
“So that I can urinate, of course. Who are you?”
“I’ve been visiting this mental institute for a few days, talking to patients. It’s for a book I’m working on.”
“Ah, you want to write a book on us loonies, eh?” he said. Before I could defend myself, he smacked himself on the head. “Yeah, yeah, I forgot. You don’t think we’re mad,” he said, looking at his hand. Something in his manner told me it was time to produce my pen and notebook.
“Why did you ask me if I was happy now?”
“I was talking to my wiener, you numbskull. Sometimes I wonder if these gates keep the loonies out of here, rather than within!”
“Why do you talk to your wiener?”
He grunted like a motor. “The bastard pesters me day in day out! Ignoring him is virtually impossible! Just like making him use a chamber pot.”
“Why?” I asked scribbling down hurriedly, sure that I’d learned to not be baffled by what I see or hear here.
“Because Weeny is scared of holes! And before you ask, yes, any kind of hole, cavity, or pit.”
My confidence in my poise dwindled. I gawked at him and came up with the stupidest question.
“So you are a celibate then?”
Shock nudged my eyes a little out of their socket. But it somehow placated the patient.
“Huh, first time someone’s asked me that. It’s not the worst thing to be, actually. I mean, Weeny mostly minds his business. Slappy here though, as you saw moments earlier, likes to punish me when our views don’t match. Blabby, on the other hand, makes me lisp or stammer or even mute whenever she doesn’t like what I’m saying. She colludes with teeth, her servile lover, and hurts everyone in the process. Bit of a masochist, she is. Nosey is the worst of them, though. He starts crying whenever he’s down, which is quite often. Bit of a brat, actually, for the moment things don’t go his way, he starts wailing and whimpering.”
He broke into a sob the next moment but kept talking. I continued taking notes and wondered if being celibate and not being an ecclesiastic can really make one go bonkers.
There are many mad people who roam free. Just know that I’ll find you, and we’ll hang out 🙃