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    Making A Spectacle Of Herself

    | Middlebury, CT, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Health & Body, Theme Of The Month, Top

    (I normally wear contacts. I am in a rush before work and just put my glasses on. A regular customer comes through later in the morning.)

    Me: “Hi! Just a medium today?”

    Regular: “Just the medium—hey, you’re wearing glasses! You never wore them before.”

    Me: “That’s because I always wear my contacts, ma’am.”

    Regular: “Don’t lie to me. You don’t need those!”

    Me: “I’ve needed glasses since I was nine.”

    Regular: “You know, I’m sick of you ‘hipster’ kids wearing ‘nerd’ glasses for fun! There are those of us that need them, and don’t appreciate what you’re doing!”

    (I motion to my black plastic frames with their small rectangular lenses.)

    Me: “I’m not hipster, and my lenses are too small to be nerdy.”

    (The regular reaches across the counter, and grabs the glasses off my face.)

    Regular: “You kids need to realize glasses aren’t just a fashion accessory!”

    Me: “Ma’am, please give those back.”

    (The regular puts them on, then flings them to the floor when she realizes exactly how strong they are. She picks them up and scratches a lens as she tries to figure out if they’re real. She throws them on the counter, breaking off one of the side arms.)

    Regular: “What the h*** is wrong with those? Why are the lenses so weird?”

    Me: “As I said, ma’am, I’ve needed glasses since I was nine. Actually, my vision is so bad that I legally cannot drive or even work without wearing vision correction. You just broke my only pair of glasses, which the local vision center does not carry anymore. How would you like to repay me for these?”

    (The regular takes her coffee and pretty much runs. My manager sees the whole thing on camera from the office, and gets her information from the next time she comes in. Because we have proof she had destroyed my property, she didn’t fight handing me a check to cover the cost of a whole new pair of glasses.)

    Snob-less Not Jobless

    | Austin, TX, USA | Family & Kids, Politics, School, Top

    (I’ve just taken an order from a well-dressed woman and her daughter, who is wearing a uniform from a private school. The woman is berating her daughter about her grades.)

    Woman: “If your grades don’t improve, you won’t get into college. You’ll end up in some dead-end job like her.”

    (The woman gestures towards me.)

    Me: “Actually, I’m a college graduate.”

    Woman: “Yes, well I mean a real college.”

    Me: “I graduated from the University of Texas with two degrees, and my teacher’s certification.”

    Woman: “You evidently didn’t do too well if you wound up here now, did you?”

    Me: “I wound up here after our state legislature cut funding for public education. My husband also holds a Master’s in engineering, but has been laid off for similar reasons. We’ve taken these jobs to survive so we wouldn’t have to depend on public assistance.”

    (I hand them their drinks.)

    Me: “Never judge a book by its cover.”

    (The woman goes over to the condiment bar without another word, but her daughter smiles and fist-bumps me.)

    Lights Out, Brains Out

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    Over Sensitive Customer

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    Man’s Best Friend, From Beginning To End

    | Alamogordo, NM, USA | Family & Kids, Pets & Animals, Top

    (A family has just had their old golden retriever euthanized, due to a mix of a bad heart and bone cancer. The whole family is pretty despondent, but the youngest, a little boy, is taking it the worst. While the family is waiting for the paperwork to get finished, one of our regulars—a young Air Force lieutenant—walks in. He quickly notices the group, and approaches the desk.)

    Lieutenant: “Did they just have to put someone down?”

    (I nod. The lieutenant sits down right next to the boy, who is near tears.)

    Lieutenant: “You okay, little guy?”

    (The boy nods.)

    Lieutenant: “Did you lose someone you care about?”

    Boy: “Uh huh…”

    Lieutenant: “Do you miss him?”

    Boy: “Uh huh…”

    Lieutenant: “Did you make every day of his life worth living?”

    Boy: “Huh?”

    Lieutenant: “I lost my little brother to cancer a few years back, and it tore me up. Had I done everything I could? What if I had done this or that differently? I just didn’t know, and it ate me up inside. Then they read us his will. It said, “I thank you, all of you, for making what borrowed time on Earth I had worth it, down to the second. That is all I could have asked for; know that should this cancer take me before I pen this will again, I loved each of you like no other family can, and going out with a smile worth smiling is the best way to go”.”

    (The whole family is listening at this point, and the boy is completely enraptured. The lieutenant, lost in his recounting for a moment, looks back at the child.)

    Lieutenant: “So, if you did your best—your VERY BEST—to make every day of his life worth living; I’m sure from wherever he is now, he’s looking back on your time together and smiling.”

    (The boy runs out of his chair, up to the lieutenant, and gives him a hug. He lets loose all the tears he was fighting back. The father tries to remove the child from his iron-gripped hug, but the lieutenant stops him.)

    Lieutenant: *to the father* “It really is no trouble at all…”

    (As for the boy, he eventually the he cried himself to sleep in the lieutenant’s lap.)

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