Everything’s Adding Up

, , , , , | Friendly | September 21, 2020

This happens about forty years ago, when my dad is a grad student and my mom is working at a fast food restaurant. There is a middle-aged woman that has been sitting at a table studying for several hours. After refilling her coffee for the umpteenth time, my mom approaches her to tell her that they are closing soon.

Woman: “I’m sorry. I’m just so confused. I have a math test tomorrow, but I don’t have a clue.”

Mom: “My husband is really good at math. He can help you. Here’s my address, and I’ll call him to let him know you’re coming.”

Woman: “Thanks so much!”

My mom finishes up closing the store in the early hours of the morning and goes straight to bed. The next morning, she gets up and talks to my dad.

Dad: “I’m tired. I was up really late helping your friend. How do you know her, anyway?”

Mom: “I don’t.”

Dad: “What?! You don’t know her?!”

The lady shows up at the fast food restaurant the next afternoon with a fruit basket.

Woman: “Thank you so much! I haven’t gotten my grade yet, but I think I passed.”

Music Always Crosses Bridges

, , , , , , | Learning | September 20, 2020

I am a teaching assistant for students on the autism spectrum. I am assigned to one specific student. She is nonverbal, but she loves music, and part of our daily schedule is to sit in on one of the chorus rehearsals. She gets excited, stims by flapping her hands, and sometimes approaches soloists to hear their voices.

That summer, I spend some more time with her, including taking her out to the local mall for lunch and window-shopping. While we are eating lunch, she suddenly smiles and starts to stim. I look up and see one of the chorus students who has just graduated approaching.

Chorus Student: “Hi! I hope I’m not interrupting anything, but I wanted to say hello to [My Student].”

Me: “Well, I can tell she’s happy to see you.”

Chorus Student: “I’m glad she enjoyed our rehearsals! Even on the days when it felt like we weren’t making any progress, [My Student] was there smiling and having a good time. Knowing someone liked listening to us was really encouraging. It was great that she and her parents were able to attend the end-of-year concert.”

She talked to [My Student] for a few minutes before leaving, and [My Student] was delighted for the rest of the day. I am glad to this day that they both made a difference to each other.

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Chocolate Cures All, Part 4

, , , , | Right | September 18, 2020

A man comes up to buy a pair of shoes. These are rather expensive shoes that have a bit of a sale going on. We’re allowed to give a coupon out if they apply for the store’s credit card. I mention this to him, and he happily obliges. I don’t remember if he was accepted or not, but he still gets his 30% off.

Customer: “Thank you very much!”

He proceeds to finish his transaction with cash. At the end, he looks over to the candy bars at the register.

Customer: “Do you have a recommendation for Godiva bars?”

Me: “I personally just like the plain milk chocolate. Nothing really beats simplicity.”

He grabs a milk bar, and I run it through for a second transaction. He takes the bar, wrapping it with the receipt, and hands it to me.

Customer: “For you, since you helped me out with a discount.”

That completely made my day. I’ve kept the wrapper in my memory box since it’s a treasured memory.

Chocolate Cures All, Part 3
Chocolate Cures All, Part 2
Chocolate Cures All

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A Different Kind Of Returner Burner

, , , | Right | September 16, 2020

I work in an antique store. It attracts a sometimes eccentric clientele. I love it. A young man comes in, approximately eighteen or nineteen. He looks a little sheepish.

Man: “I’m really sorry, I think my mum accidentally stole these from here. I’m happy to give them back and I’ll pay for them as well. She doesn’t mean to, she just forgets she has them and walks out with them.”

The item in question is a little dog figurine and a small glass vase; neither of them very high in value. Both have tags on from the shop.

Me: “I’ll grab my boss.”

This definitely looks like I’m passing over the problem to him. I am. I hold my hands up but it’s his shop at the end of the day. And I had another lady in line to buy a large wooden cat statue, which she ended up needing me to carry to her car.

 I returned to my till to see no one in sight. I served the next customer. Twenty minutes later in an empty shop the man and my boss came out of the camera room.

Man: “I’m sorry.”

Boss: “It’s okay. She looks like she just forgot they were in her hand. It’s an easy mistake to make when trying to remember everything else.”

The man hands my boss the cash to cover the items and my boss hands him the cash back.

Boss: “Listen you’ve returned the items. You are more honest than most of my regulars. Your mum messed up but you’re taking responsibility for it. That speaks about you as a person.”

The man broke into tears. My boss is a good man.

Returner Burner, Part 8
Returner Burner, Part 7
Returner Burner, Part 6
Returner Burner, Part 5

Returner Burner, Part 4

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A Kind-achinno

, , , , | Right | September 14, 2020

I visit the same coffee shop on a regular basis and am on good terms with the staff there. One day, I leave my purse at home and this happens:

Cashier: “Regular cappuccino?”

Me: “No, I forgot my purse so won’t have a coffee. Thought I’d still drop in and say hello, though.”

Cashier: “Oh, no! Have a coffee anyway! Here…”

The cashier hands me the cappuccino his colleague has been making in the meantime.

Me: “Oh, thank you! I’ll come back tomorrow and pay for it.”

I do as promised and return the next day with money for my coffee.

Cashier: “What are you doing?! We weren’t actually expecting you to come back and pay!”

Me: “But I said I would…”

Cashier: “Well, tough. We’re not taking any money from you.”

Me: “But I…”

Cashier: “No! Go away!”

Shocked, I did as he told me and left, but not before I dropped my money in the tip jar, as he wouldn’t take it for the register!

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