City The Ballad of the Chrome Sheriff
posted by May 25 at 9:57 AMon
In this week’s Last Days, I report this sighting by Hot Tipper Todd:
“I was in Home Depot to get a key made. As I’m looking around for an employee, I spot a somewhat-homeless-looking man wearing a mask. This mask was made entirely of duct tape. It had holes for his eyes and mouth (picture Dr. Doom) and a clear safety shield, which was in the upright position. This guy walks up to an employee and asks, ‘What aisle is the duct tape on?’ Oh my freaking god, am I dreaming this? Apparently not, because that same employee ended up making my key for me, and he wouldn’t shut up about the duct-tape guy. Since then, I’ve shared this story with friends and coworkers, and I’ve heard of many sightings. Does anyone know what this guy’s story is? I gotta know.”
At the end of the item, I urged readers to share any info they had on the man known alternately as the Beekeeper, the Chrome Sheriff, and the Duct-Tape Guy.
Responses have been coming in steadily, from history briefs (“From 1998-2000, he wore a sandwich board with Spanish writing on it and road-race bibs like the kind marathon runners wear”) to notes of commiseration (“Thanks for letting me know I haven’t been hallucinating this guy”) to this seemingly legitmate input from Hot Tipper Mark:
I don’t know the particular case, but it is very common for schizophrenic patients (who make up a large number of homeless types) to create masks and headgear of that sort (most frequently out of tin foil). It has to do with the symptoms—they lose “ego boundaries,” and thus believe that voices control them (ie Son of Sam) and that everyone can read their thoughts, thus, they create magical head protective devices to keep the alien intruders out and their thoughts contained within. The more funding for mental health (and all other health) gets shunted away to other people’s delusions about Iraq, the more we’ll see dumping of schizophrenics to the streets and away from proper care (you probably know that the current administration has set back cancer and other research formidably, as part of their Marcos-ization of the country).Thanks to all who’ve shared so far. Others, write firstname.lastname@example.org.