Courtesy, courtsey, where are thou courtesy?

Yesterday, I stopped at the grocery store to pick up some bread. I left Ken in the car listening to the “Oldies,” while I ran in for what was intended to be a quick errand. I speed walked to the bread aisle and picked out a checking out line where the woman in front of me was just finishing her transaction. Good! I’d be back int he car in a few minutes with a swipe of my debt card.

Wrong. Little did I know I was in for a delay. When the clerk went to deduct the woman’s newspaper coupons, the $1.00 off on a gallon of milk wouldn’t register. Of course, there was nothing wrong with the computer–the woman had bought the wrong brand of milk.

Great! Now the bag boy had to travel to the far ends of the store to get the right brand and walk the mile and a half back to where everyone was waiting. While I waited with my one loaf of bread, I wondered why this always seems to happen to me.

Instead of fretting, though, I waited patiently, reassuring myself that I had nothing of importance following my trip to the store, so why should I be upset? Right?

I wasn’t upset until this morning.  What bugged me more than anything was the fact that the woman didn’t apologize for her mistake and for the fact that she delayed me and a string of  other people behind me. Why couldn’t she just say, “sorry”? Didn’t this ignorant donkey’ (I can’t say jackass, can I?) ever hear of common courtesy?

After this experience, I had been delayed a good ten minutes but as I walked to the car I patted myself on the back for such stellar self-control. (Not really, I stewed all the way to the car.)

Why am I telling you this tale? Well, first I need to vent. Remember my piece on Utopia? I’ve just added another category to people who would be eliminated–the rude ones. And second, we all can use these day-to day experiences when we build characters. Through imagination and exaggeration, this woman might become a serial killer who first frustrates her prey before spilling poison milk on them.


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