Jane goes into Urban Outfitters. She feels okay like she looks not out of place or anything. Her hair is clean, she feels okay. Jane is on caffeine and feels excited. She read that caffeine doesn't make you do things better but it makes you feel like you are doing things better.
Jane picks up six pants. They are in European sizes, she thinks about how Urban Outfitters is stupid for trying to be European. Later she thinks they probably are European, she heard somebody say something about them being European once. Jane goes to the dressing room with her pants. The girl counts Jane's pants. She makes a nervous smile thing when it's awkward for the girl to count her pants because they are over her arm. The girl makes a confident smile back and Jane feels stupid. She goes in the dressing room stall and feels stupid for calling attention to herself with the awkward smile interaction. Jane looks in the mirror and feels okay, nothing is broken or leaking, she is wearing makeup and a black coat.
She tries on all the pants and then tries on some of the pants again. Sometimes she dances with the music and looks at herself in the mirror wearing pants and dancing and hopes no one sees her feet from the outside. She takes off the tags and metal detector things from some pants. She puts one of the pants on underneath the pants she is wearing and puts two pants in her bag. The metal detector thing falls on the floor and makes a noise and when she zips her bag it makes a noise, she wonders if someone will connect those sounds with shoplifting.
Jane feels cool because of the dim lighting, the act of shoplifting, and her makeup and non greasy hair, maybe. She puts the pants on her arm and bunches them up so it looks like there are more pants there. She walks out past the girl who counted her pants and feels scared. The girl looks at her, Jane can see from her peripheral vision maybe. The girl is talking to another girl and finishes talking as Jane walks by her but Jane doesn't really think the girl will do anything, she is only nervous as a cautionary method.
She puts the three pants back where she got them and walks quickly towards the door. As she walks towards the metal detectors things in her body change, blood and heart things, she feels different and faster. She thinks things to counter anxiety, 'I want it to go off. It should go off. It would be exciting to go to jail. Corporate bitches. I’ll feel cool. I'm wearing makeup. Nobody cares. They'll just tell me not to ever come back and it will be funny, I’ll be okay.' She goes through the metal detectors and outside and feels victorious and secretive, she feels like the wind is blowing her hair around and she should skip or something.
Jane walks down the street. While she waits at the stoplight a black man with a beard asks her for change. She gives him some from her pocket and feels self-righteous even though she gave him like sixty cents probably. She feels aware of the people waiting at the stoplight seeing her give the man money and worries that they perceive her as stupid and naïve or something. The man said ‘bless you’ after she gave him change. She thinks if she had no money and an addiction to something that gave her temporary relief she would want people to give her money. She uses her money to buy substances that give her temporary relief like opiates from food and caffeine. She supports being homeless and asking people for money so you can shoot heroin or drink alcohol or something.
She goes into Rittenhouse Square and sits on a bench. She takes clothes out of her bookbag and puts them in a red bag that was also in her bookbag. She goes across the street into Barnes and Noble. She goes to the magazine place. There is a tall man talking on his cell phone about Obama in front of the fashion magazines in a voice that is used to indicate gayness in males or something. Jane looks at the fashion magazines diagonally to him. He keeps talking on his cell phone and moves over a little. She looks at the magazines more without touching them. She used to like to read them more than she does now. She feels a little bad about that. She likes watching movies and TV shows where the characters act trite, clichéd and melodramatic, because of the way the people look in the movies.
She walks to the New Releases section and picks up New Moon, the second book in the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer. She walks into a corner and flips through the pages looking for the metal detector thing. A woman comes into the corner in a wheelchair maybe. Jane tries to make it look like she is skimming the book. The woman lowers herself onto the ground while reading a book. Jane doesn’t register what the woman is doing, just her presence, Jane leaves the corner. She goes up the escalator and sees a bathroom with a sign next to it that says Please Leave Merchandise Outside Bathroom. She walks toward it, she sees a white shiny half globe that might be a camera on the ceiling, but she goes into the bathroom anyway, carrying New Moon, her bookbag, and the red bag.
In the bathroom she goes to the handicapped stall and a woman comes in the bathroom, Jane makes eye contact with her through the crack where the door closes and thinks ‘oh no!’ and that maybe the woman could see New Moon through the crack.
Jane goes over to the toilet and stands next to it not doing anything for like a minute. There is shuffling and then peeing noises from the woman. Jane is still carrying all her objects, she thinks maybe if she puts them down that will be suspicious. After a minute maybe she starts trying to unzip the red bag, still holding her other things. She thinks she can get out her water bottle and pour some in the toilet to sound like peeing. But it is hard to unzip her bag and she thinks zipping noises sound suspicious. She puts her things down and pees regularly, so that it will seem like she is a normal person peeing. The other toilet flushes and feet walk into the stall next to Jane, she is worried, what if it is the same woman, waiting to catch Jane and search her or something. The woman next to her makes a sighing noise when she starts peeing.
She puts the book into her bookbag and leaves the stall and washes her hands. The woman comes out of the stall next to her, it is not the same woman. Jane leaves the bathroom and avoids making eye contact with the white shiny half globe attached to the ceiling. She walks out of Barnes and Noble quickly.
Jane walks to the subway. When she goes into it and gets on a train she looks at the other humans while tensing the muscles in her eyes and making them wide. The humans see her reflected in the train windows and continue thinking about their lives.
She gets off the train and gets on a bus and then gets off the bus and walks into Han Ah Reum Supermarket. She used to steal apples and tea and blueberries from this store and feels afraid people will recognize her from the camera footage and confront her with wide eyes or something. That hasn’t happened and she goes to Han Ah Reum often. People mostly avert their eyes inside it. There are buckwheat noodles and a sushi section and a produce section. When they stopped carrying Nutella Jane felt sad.
She buys a can of coffee grounds that say something about chicory on the front and an apple. She hasn’t eaten anything all day and feels good about that, coffee covers her appetite. She leaves Han Ah Reum. There is a man riding a bike. She crosses some streets and now she is going in the same direction as the man on a bike, he is behind her. She hears a bike noise and moves over fast and feels stupid. She watches the man on the bike ride away. Han Ah Reum is like seven blocks away from her house. There is a quiet street that she could take to her house or a loud one, she sees the mailman walking in the quiet street and takes the loud one.
She walks to her house and goes into her room. She puts on plaid cotton pants and a T-shirt and feels comfortable. She puts the coffee grounds on the shelf in her closet next to some stolen teas. There is a Korean special tea with corn syrup solids and pine nuts in it and a tea called Sleepytime from Celestial Seasons and organic brown rice and green tea and Earl Grey tea. She keeps them in her closet because she feels ownership of them and unwillingness to share. Jane lives in her parent’s house and buys 2% of the food she eats and none of the heat, electricity, or water she uses in her house. She invalidates them on purpose and keeps her tea and coffee hidden in her closet. Also a small jar of raw organic honey from Brazil. Hiding food and eating it in secret is one of the symptoms of compulsive overeating.
Jane moves things around in her room. When she is alone Jane feels less like she is performing for other people. When Jane was nine years old or something she was riding the school bus and looking out the window and a boy saw her face and put his hand next to his ear with his thumb and pinky sticking out and mouthed some words at her. Jane laughed and felt confused and said to another person on the school bus ‘what?’ and the person said ‘he said “call me.”’ Jane felt embarrassed and the person smiled a little and looked away. Jane went home and for like the next week did things with the boy outside the bus in her mind. Like imagining what she looked like, and doing things differently to present an identity more suitable to him.
Jane sits on her window sill and feels the heater, it’s warm. Her mom says ‘dinner’ up the stairs and she goes downstairs and sits at a table with her mom and dad. ‘Food is bad’ she thinks. There is food on the table. Jane’s dad prays. Jane makes an annoyed face during the prayer and then feels stupid. She eats soup made of beef, onions, soy sauce, and potatoes. Her mom makes dinner every day. There is bread and salad, Jane doesn’t eat those things. Her mom eats mostly salad and a little soup. Her dad eats a lot of soup and some bread. Later her mom eats some bread. She talks to her parents because of the coffee maybe. Every time her parents say words her brain finds things she doesn’t like about what they say. When they stop eating Jane’s mom says something about singing a song and starts to get up and Jane’s dad says ‘don’t get up’ and Jane’s mom sits back down. Her mom says ‘how about o come all ye faithful?’ and raises her eyebrows and Jane’s dad starts singing ‘o come all ye faithful’ and Jane’s mom sings with him and Jane sings not loudly. She feels like an asshole for not singing loudly because she knows her mom likes it when she sings loudly and feels supported and like the holy spirit is present. She is showing she doesn’t support singing after dinner but the message her mom is receiving is ‘I’m all alone’ and the message her dad is receiving is ‘insubordinate bitch,’ maybe.