Jul 24 2014
Only today and tomorrow left in my binge of Joe’s Rusty Nail, Jack’s Bar and the Stroll Inn celebrating the Pittsburgh Magazine, Best of 2014 recognition for ” Best Snarky Nod Toward Local Behavior ”
Today’s Guest Blogger is Frances Sansig of the Frances Files Podcast.
I’m the kind of person who likes to acknowledge that you are also a person. I think that’s called basic, human decency.
So when I’m checking out at the grocery store, usually, no one close to me is dying (that’s my litmus test for, “Is this call important?”), I stay off my phone because I want to be fully present. Hell, I’ll work with you to complete my transaction. Your job isn’t glamorous. You’re on your feet all day, you take shit from people, you aren’t getting paid much and you probably have someone who depends on you. I OWE you that dignity.
I can start bagging for you while you scan my sweaty buy-one-get-one-free chicken breasts and I honestly want to BE THERE FOR YOU when you ask, “Is this parsley or cilantro?” You want to tell me you figured out I’m making chicken pot pie by the items on the belt? I’m all ears. You’re paying attention. We’re interacting. I think that’s cool. And with keen eyes like that, you could catch a serial killer.
Which is why I get my Spanx all up in a bunch when you’re on the clock and you’re not reciprocating, like when happened last week when I was at a drug store in town, plunked my assorted bandages and an Oprah magazine on the counter, and I say “Hello” to you, but you’re ignoring me and my Oprah magazine because you are inexplicably enraptured by what you must think is the world’s FUNNIEST joke that your manager is telling, just a few feet away.
See, now – I get that folks have bad days. You might be in pain and I might not know it. Your husband might have just left you. Your grandma might have died last week and you’re thinking about her. Those are all good reasons for you not to give a damn about me or Oprah. But when you’re just being stupid? I’ll call you on it.
So when I ask you a question about my purchase and you continue to avoid eye contact with me, and keep looking OVER me like I’m in your way, so as not to MISS A SINGLE WORD OF THIS GODAWFUL DUMB JOKE, I get annoyed.
When I try to get the hell out because I’m so irritated and I’m ready to say something to embarrass you in front of the other customers, you yell, “Wait, you forgot your receipt.”
Now you’ve asked for it. “Well, MAYBE you would have noticed that if you had answered me when I asked you about it, but you were too enthralled in your manager’s STUPID joke!”
Then you laugh it all off and say, “I heard you, but, you know, it’s Sunday.”
It’s SUNDAY? Your excuse is even lamer than the guy’s joke, which is lamer than his moustache. The level of lame here is so deep it would take a MONTH OF SUNDAYS for you to dig your ass out of it.
“Sorry I wrecked into you and killed your entire family because I wasn’t paying attention, but you know, it IS Sunday!”
“Sorry this meal you’re eating at the restaurant where I work has a rat in it, but you know: IT’S SUNDAY!”
“Sorry I’m total D-bag and had sex with your husband in your bed, but it is, after all, Sunday.”
I might have cut you some slack if the joke were remotely funny. But it wasn’t. It wasn’t even as funny as your raggedy uniform outfit. Which I’m guessing you wore because IT WAS SUNDAY, Ya Jagoff!