I am a loud person, when I want to be. Loud laugh, loud talking, loud yelling. Sing a lot. Make sound effects. Beat boxing.
It's what I believe led to my fateful run in with a vocal chord nodule nearly seven months ago. I conquered that nodule, but I can't say it didn't take a tiny piece of me with it.
But I came across a loud person recently that made me rethink my own classification as a loud person. I pick and choose. I'm selective. This person was not.
I'm silent comparad to this person, folks. We all are.
Here's how I met her.
She was an employee of a popular bookstore chain that my family and I went to over Thanksgiving. She overheard me telling my sister-in-law and my soon-to-be sister-in-law that I was writing a children's book. This one tiny tidbit put forth a series of events that make me sweaty just thinking about.
As soon as I uttered my statement, I could sense that the cosmos was unhappy.
Books began shaking violently on their perches. Water rippled in glasses, Jurassic Park style. Dark storm clouds amassed overhead. Kids in the ghetto stopped playing and looked to the skies. Tom Cruise pointed and ran.
And then she appeared.
She popped out of the Kardashian Konfidential book like a genie out of a lamp.
Apparently I said the magic words, or rubbed three times, or who knows what, but she appeared, and there she was.
Shoutfest 2010 with the bookstore employee commenced.
She was round and small. Bouncey. Jovial. And loud. The whole store noticed.
I always heard you were supposed to be quiet in libraries or bookstores. Have respect for the other people trying to acquire knowledge. Gain intellect. Have respect for that process and quietly adhere to an unspoken set of guidelines.
That is the opposite of this woman's approach.
Her voice gained volume with each and every word out of her mouth. Like a car shifting gears, yelling to shouting, shouting to bellowing, bellowing to exploding.
And I started sweating. It wasn't hot in the store, mind you.
I just sweat when I'm uncomfortable. That's a common thing, I think? I don't know.
And she made me exactly that.
But I don't really know how to respond to someone that loud. I found myself becoming quiet. Extremely quiet. My responses to her became nearly inaudible. I was just mouthing words. People were staring. Judging.
And then I caught myself. What do you do when you're confronted with fire? Ya fight it with more fire.
So, I mentally smacked myself in the face, threw some coal on the embers, and decided to get after it.
I shouted responses. Her face lit up. She wanted more. To illustrate a point, I picked up a book and threw it across the store. I kicked a table, sending books tumbling to the ground. I exclaimed 'horseshit' at the top of my lungs. I picked up one particularly lengthy smut novel and began ripping pages out in clumps and shoving them down my pants.
She loved it. It was turning her on.
She kinda put a hand up to her face, made the bedroom eyes and let out a little purr.
In response to this, I undid my stuffed pants and took my shirt off. It's cool, I had a few shirts on, so it was no big deal.
Overall, it was a pretty damn good day at the bookstore.
I'm now writing this in my phone's 'Notes' app from the back of a cop car, but that's besides the point. Apparently removing one's shirt in the children's book section is not only frowned upon, but it's also illegal? Where's that in the Constitution. I've got rights here people.
I'll probably get 10% off from her the next time I shop there, though, so that's being looked forward to.