Older Can Mean Wiser

, , , , | Right | September 17, 2018

(My dad and I are scouring a store for maraschino cherries and we cannot find them anywhere. Finally, after a few more aisles, we find a lady who works here. This lady is not young, and I don’t mean that in a rude way at all. Her hair is white as snow, and she is obviously very high up there in age. My dad approaches her and asks:)

Dad: “Excuse me, miss. Do you know where we can find maraschino cherries?”

Older Lady: “They will either be on aisle 13, all the way at the end, on the right side, top shelf, or they will be on aisle 9, all the way at the end, on the left side, second shelf from the bottom.”

Dad: “Thank you. Have a great day.”

Older Lady: “You, too.”

(At first we were suspicious that this very much older lady could remember the exact places of such small things as cherries. First we went to aisle 13, and they were exactly where she said, except that they were out of them. Then, we went to aisle 9, and again, they were exactly where she said. My dad and I just shared this look of amazement for a few seconds and said, “Wow.” This lady may have appeared old, but her mind obviously hadn’t aged a day.)

Age Has Not Slowed Him Down

, , , , , | Right | August 21, 2018

(I am cleaning off tables after the lunch rush when I hear a clatter. I look up to see an elderly man in a motorized cart plowing between two rows of single tables, knocking over one. The salt and peppers shakers fall to the floor, as well as a basket of napkins which scatter everywhere. The man is apparently unconcerned as he continues on and knocks over a second table. I run over to grab the table’s edge before it hits the floor. A woman standing behind him — presumably his wife — speaks up.)

Woman: “I’m so sorry. He doesn’t know when to slow down.”

Me: *annoyed, but trying to remain courteous* “It’s okay, ma’am.”

(Another customer graciously helps me gather the spilled napkins. When I relay the incident to my boss later, she just shakes her head.)

Boss: “Some people should not be driving.”

Why Did The Husband Cross The Road…

, , , , , | Right | August 21, 2018

(I’m working the counter at a popular fast food chain. A lot of times we have elderly people come in from nearby retirement or nursing homes, often with a list of things to bring back. Today an elderly gentleman comes in with one of such lists.)

Me: “Hi there! Is this for here or to go?”

Customer: “Hello. This will be to go.” *places coupon on counter* “I would like to use this twice, please.”

(I check and see that it is a 2-for-$5 chicken sandwiches coupon. For these coupons, we need to input which sandwiches the customer wants before continuing on with the order.)

Me: “Okay! Do you—”

Customer: *continuing on* “—and I would also like.”

Me: “Actually, sir, I need to know which sandwiches you would like.”

Customer: “Oh. The chicken sandwiches.”

Me: “Yes, I know. But which chicken sandwiches would you like?”

Customer: “I would just like four chicken sandwiches.”

Me: *seeing he’s holding a piece of paper in hand and assuming it’s a list* “Do you have a list I can look at?”

Customer: *lifts up the paper and places it in front of me* “Well, my wife told me she wants four chicken sandwiches, a small fry, and two drinks.”

(I read over the short list. Indeed, it says, “four chicken sandwiches,” but not which kind.)

Me: “Okay, I’ve got the fry and the drinks. But which chicken sandwiches would you like for the coupon? We have three to choose from.” *points them out on the board* “We have [chicken sandwich #1], [chicken sandwich #2], or [chicken sandwich #3].”

Customer: “Oh. I just would like four chicken sandwiches.”

(I’m struggling at this point to keep my customer service smile in place.)

Me: “We have different kinds of chicken sandwiches, sir.”

Customer: “Do you?” *looks at the board again* “Oh. Well, just give me the best one.”

Me: *ascends to another plane of existence*

(I ended up giving him two of [chicken sandwich #1] and two of [chicken sandwich #3]. He and his wife must have liked them, because I saw them a few days later ordering the same sandwiches again!)

The Judicial Blintz

, , , , , | Legal | August 19, 2018

(This takes place many years ago. My great-grandmother is in court to become a US citizen, when this happens.)

Judge: “What are the three branches of government?”

Great-Grandmother: “Executive, Legislative, and Jewish.”

Judge: “You’re Jewish?”

Great-Grandmother: “Yeah.”

Judge: “Do you know how to make blintzes?”

Great-Grandmother: “Yes, of course.”

Judge: “My wife tries to make them, but they always fall apart. What should she do differently?”

Great-Grandmother: *gives blintz-making advice that sadly has been lost to time*

Judge: “I’m approving your citizenship application. Congratulations.”

An Army/Navy Family

, , , , | Related | August 18, 2018

(As my grandmother has gotten older, her memory has unfortunately started to get worse. Whenever I visit, I ask her to tell me family stories or look with me through memorabilia she’s collected throughout her life. This is to help jog her memory, but also so I can write things down I think the rest of the family would like to remember. One day, we’re looking through a photo album together, and we come across a photo of my grandfather in his Army uniform.)

Me: “Wasn’t Grandpa so handsome?!”

Grandma: “Oh, yes! This was the picture he gave me before he left to fight in WWII.”

(We flip a few more pages, and a wallet-sized photo drops out from between two pages. I pick it up, and it’s of another young man I don’t recognize, dressed in a Navy uniform.)

Me: “Grandma, who is this? Is this Grandpa’s brother?”

Grandma: *squints at the picture* “I haven’t seen that in years! That was [Man]. He was a Navy man, you see?”

Me: “Was he a friend of yours and Grandpa’s?”

Grandma: “Sort of. He was the other young man I was dating at the time.”

Me: *trying not to sound too surprised* “What?!”

Grandma: *shrugs* “You know, girls always dated more than one fella back then, unless someone asked us to go steady. It was very casual. Why you young folks want to go steady with someone you’ve only had one date with is beyond me.”

Me: *trying not to laugh* “I’m assuming [Man] went to fight in the war, too?”

Grandma: *sighs* “Yes, he left right after your grandpa did.”

Me: “So, what made you choose Grandpa in the end?”

Grandma: “Hmm? Oh, because he came back first.”

Me: *now I’m losing it* “Grandma! That’s the only reason?”

(She just smiled at me before putting the Navy beau’s picture back in the album and going to make us some tea. While I hope this other man made it safely back from the war and lived a full life, I’m also grateful she chose my grandpa because, you know, I’m alive thanks to that decision. Funny how life works, isn’t it?)

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