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The First Step Is Admitting You Have A Problem. Then, Ice Packs.

, , , , | Right Working | May 27, 2022

I work at the concession stand at a movie theater. We have a giant push-cart that we use to bring stock from our supply rooms to the stand. I’ve parked it next to the concession stand. I’ve just finished unloading about ten bags of popcorn kernels and several thirty-five-pound boxes of popping oil. I’m on a medication that gives me frequent urination as a side effect, and it suddenly hits and I have to pee like crazy, so I decide to run to the bathroom before taking the cart back to the supply room. Probably not a good idea, but if you gotta go… you gotta go.

I come out of the bathroom to see a customer — a man in his forties in a business suit — walking through the lobby, staring at his phone. I watch in horror as he walks around the side of the concession stand, hits his shin on the push-cart, and does what I can only describe as a “slow-motion fall.” He sort of crumples to his knees, then his butt, then… kind of flops down onto his back on top of the cart while muttering a surprised, “WWWUUUAAA!”

I rush over to him, assuming the worst. I’ve seen a few falls in the ten years I’ve worked here — almost none of which were actually our fault — and most of the people exploded and threatened lawsuits, demanded free stuff, etc.

Me: “Are you all right, sir?”

Customer: “Um… yeah, I think.”

Me: “All right. Hang tight. Let me get my boss, and she can contact an ambulance if needed.”

Customer: “No. No. Please don’t do that.”

Me: “I’m sorry.”

Customer: “I’m gonna be honest. I’d just rather… pretend this didn’t happen. This is the third time I’ve fallen this week because I was distracted by my cellphone. I really don’t want anyone seeing the security footage. I don’t think my pride could take it.”

Me: *Amused* “Are you sure?”

Customer: “Yes.”

He very calmly stood up, brushed himself off, dug out his wallet, placed a $5 in my hand, made a “Shhh!” gesture, and wandered away.

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