You Darn Millennials And Your Historically-Varied Taste In Music!

, , , , , , , | Friendly | July 19, 2017

On a beautiful sunny day, as I drive into the parking lot at my local supermarket, one of my all time favourite pieces of music starts to play on the radio and so I, like most of you, crank that sucker up so that I can really enjoy it. Well, I drive around a bit, find a parking space and pull in, wait till the piece finishes then turn off my car, close the windows (handy feature of my motor; for about a minute after the engine is off the windows still work), and climb out. This is where things become fun. As I exit the car a little old lady (proper, feisty, granny mark3, iron gray bun and all) marches up to me and proceeds to give me a proper old fashioned haranguing. I’m talking a proper “you kids and your rock music, get orf moi lawn” raging while her inevitable companion (a noticeably more wrinkled granny with a walker) lurks behind her and smirks.

Now, anyone that knows me knows that I am, in many ways, an awful person and usually I’d have cut the old biddy off with some form of scathing comment, but I can’t. First, because it’s been such a long time since I’ve seen such a professionally delivered haranguing that I just couldn’t make myself break in; second, because both of these old ladies are clearly having such a great time railing at me that even a colossal ar*e-hole like myself can’t bear to spoil their fun, but mainly because of the huge, glaring elephant in the room…

You see, I hadn’t been blaring out Disturbed or Maiden or even a little Alestorm. The track that was playing when I rolled into that parking lot was Prokofiev’s Montagues and the Capulets, one of the most iconic and recognisable pieces of music ever danced to. Given that the piece was composed more than a century ago, ie. before either of these aged ladies HAD BEEN BORN, I was totally gob smacked to be told off for playing my “modern rock tunes” too loudly.

Half-Baked Parenting

, , , , | Related | July 18, 2017

I’m about six years old. I’ve been disabled since birth, so spending long hours walking around is too much for me. (Thank goodness for getting a wheelchair now! I’m free to shop ’til I drop!)

My mother decides that she wants to go shopping in a little town. I am less than enthusiastic, so she pops in to a bakery, tells me to sit, then leaves.

It takes a little while for the staff to realize she’s not coming back. They ask me where she is, to which I just shrug. I don’t know her number, nor do I have any identification on me. Unable to leave the store to search for my mother, they decide to keep an eye on me until she comes back.

Over the several hours she’s gone, I get bored. I look at the stuffed animals the bakery has for decoration, and (without touching them or getting out of my seat) I start to make up stories for them. The lizard is my favorite. The staff must have noticed, because the owner takes it down and lets me play with it.

Evening arrives, and my mother finally returns. She tells me to give the lizard back, but the owner insists I keep it. I don’t know what they said to my mother that day, but she was angry with me the rest of the way home. I didn’t get left anywhere after that.

To the bakery staff and owner, thank you for dealing with such an unexpected ordeal. I still treasure that lizard you gave me.

The Mannequin Challenge Takes Hollywood

, , , , , | Friendly | July 17, 2017

I am meeting a friend at the movies and arrive before she does. Since I’m early, I buy my ticket but just wait in the lobby so we can go into the theater together. I’m not a very “fidgety” person, so I tend to sit or stand very still whenever I’m not actually doing anything. I have been sitting for a while in my car and know I will be sitting in a movie for a couple of hours, so I just stand to the side instead of sitting on one of the available chairs.

I watch other customers coming in, and eventually a mom and her two little girls come inside. They are waiting on someone as well, and one of the girls, who is probably six or seven, is running around while waiting. She’s not being wild or causing trouble, just very energetic. She stops and looks at the various cardboard cutouts of movie characters that are positioned around the lobby, and then she comes up to me and pauses.

I smile and give her a little wave, and she gasps and runs back to her mom. Just then, a man walks inside and over to join them, and the girl exclaims, “Daddy, I thought that lady over there was a poster!”

I’m flattered she thought I looked good enough to be an actress!

Some Stories (Chop)Stick With You

, , , , , | Hopeless | July 14, 2017

This story takes place about 20 years ago. I own a small Chinese restaurant and every week on Sunday at 11:30 on the dot, a family comes in. The father is Caucasian and the mother is Chinese. Their daughter is about five or six and is one of the loudest and rambunctious children I’ve ever met.

Every Sunday without fail, they’ll come in, and the kid will make a mess, scream, etc., and the father will ask for a fork for himself and their daughter. The mother will constantly try to calm her daughter down and tell her to be a “proper lady” and tell her husband to at least attempt to use chopsticks — and usually fail to do so. It becomes a habit and I usually have to deal with this table because the kid’s such a pain that none of my servers want to deal with her.

One week, the family just stops coming. Most of us are thinking “Oh, good, no more brat.” Three months pass and the family comes back, but it’s just the father and the child.

Surprisingly, the child is very calm. In fact she orders the dishes, says please and thank you (I’d like to mention that half of our adult patrons don’t do that), and she uses chopsticks better than my eight-year-old.

After the meal the father comes up to pay for the bill. I ask him how he got his daughter to be so polite, because quite frankly it seems like a miracle.

He gives me the most forlorn look I’ve ever seen. Apparently his wife died in a car crash about three months earlier (at this point I am feeling very guilty about calling her a brat) and never came home. For some reason his daughter thought it was her fault and that because she was being naughty her mother didn’t want to come back. Even though the father said it wasn’t the case, she insisted on being a “proper lady” and got both of them to learn how to use chopsticks, “Because Ma Ma will come back if she sees how nice we are.”

After he paid for the bill I just went to the back and cried. I went home and hugged my daughter.

It’s been 20 years since then and they’re still regulars. She even has a little family of her own that she brings in. The little girl eventually realized that her mother wasn’t coming back, but was still the most polite customer I’ve ever had. I’m sure her mother would be very proud to see how well she’s grown up.

It still brings me great joy when I see the daughter teaching her own children how to use chopsticks.

A First-Class First-Grade Forgery

, , | Pittsburgh, PA, USA | Learning | July 12, 2017

When I was in first grade, our bus had a stop at the corner by my house on [X Street] and a second stop at the fire hall located across the alley and main road, behind my house, for all of the kids on [Y Street]. Typically, I caught my bus at the corner stop, but I thought the stop at the fire hall was so much cooler since the kids got to cross the main road.

One day, on the way to school, I wrote a note and signed my mom’s name on it, giving myself permission to get off the bus at the fire hall with all of my friends. Keep in mind, I was six years old with nothing but crayons and some old worksheets in my book bag, and no knowledge of cursive handwriting. You can imagine how ridiculous that permission note looked.

The school accepted it. My mom had a field day telling the school administrators about themselves.

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