I have always stressed about everything in life-period. I am a worrier and come from along line of worriers for many generations. Since I had a stroke in August my life has now escalated into a living hell sometimes. I go to bed worrying and sometimes watch the clock click for hours. When I open my eyes in the morning; the nightmare begins all over again. Granted, I do have legitimate things to concern myself about now, but not to the extent I take it. I refuse to take any medication, so I experience each raw chill and thrill at its fullest. I write to attempt to expel new thoughts going through my brain and the non-drinker in me has seriously thought about enjoying a glass of wine or two. In essence, my life has so many ups and downs it has become a real Mouse Trap Game with me playing the lead role as the mouse.
I could relate to you many scenarios that have taken me up stairs and off the yellow diving board without a helping hand I am going to tell you a story I can always say had had legitimate gear supports to make my blood pressure soar.
It was a sunny Saturday in the year of 1991 at my old retail store called Flash Cadilac on Rideau Street in Ottawa, Ontario. Business was brisk and people were happy until some rotten cheese walked through the front door. I could smell a rat the way the 6 people huddled together gathering clothing like they were in a race against time. Within 8 minutes they slapped down about $1000 dollars worth of merchandise they wanted to purchase and handed me a platinum American Express Card that I had a good idea was not theirs. As the total of the purchase was over $75.00; I had to call it in to get an approval and as I told them the procedure, I noticed a gun poking out of one of the rotten cheese's pockets. Immediately anyone would worry and my hands became clammy as my heart took a dive off the diving board up to new height of stress.
The American Express representative was not much of one to console my plight. She instructed me to keep them there while I stood looking at their increasingly agitated faces and waited for the shoe to kick me off the plank. Five minutes, ten minutes, fifteen minutes went by as I talked to her and mumbled sentences to them waiting for the police to show up. By this time my head was a succession of gears spinning out of control waiting to be shot.
Twenty minutes later the rotten cheese knew what was up and ran for the door at the same time a constable from the Ottawa Police showed up. The gears of my emotions spun rapidly at that point as guns went off and some how one lone cop managed to get the five rotten cheeses in the back of a squad car.
As usual they sailed down the ramp to freedom and I was instructed that I had to go to court to put these guys away. One would say the whole scenario escalated into a cat and mouse game as they would come into the store in the weeks before the case was set to be heard and try to scare me by giving me dirty looks.
I found out they were all originally from South America and visions of the old Miami Vice TV show ran through my head to the point I could no longer sleep. Every single day was the beginning of a Mouse Trap game for me and the stress according to a friend was killing me.
The day of the court case came quickly enough and as I spotted them at the end of the hall I began to think this was the end of it all. If they didn't kill me- my emotions would. We never made it inside the court room that day as the police had filed the wrong papers and they got away with everything. They ended up winning the game, and for months my mind was caught in fear under the Mouse Trap Game trap. Some say the Mouse Trap Game doesn't work properly – I say if you feed it the right cheese it will, and as they say- stress can kill you. It's such a stupid game!
Photos by Linda Seccaspina -2012
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Linda will also have a story in Lanark County's The Humm in August