Sunday, February 28, 2010


-  It's that time of year.  Cookie time.  Cute kids in badged brown banners hawking kill pills.  Must have. 

-  Like a toll taker at the traffic funnel exit of the store, she flashes that gapped smile and lisps her question, prompts your answer with an affirmative nod, then glances at her military stanced father for verification she'd followed procedure. 

-  I told her I'd waited a year for a thin mint and a snickerdoodle, and I wouldn't be denied.  She didn't understand.  I said, "A green one and a blue one, please."  She selected one of each from the stacks behind the polished "display" boxes, setting them carefully by the cash box, awaiting payment.  I asked if she had change, and offered a twenty.  She looked as if I'd slapped her, and whispered, "Yes."

-  Her father snapped into action, opening the cash box and taking the bill.  "So!  At four dollars each, he wants two.  How much would that be?", he pressured his daughter.  She could only muster a blank look.  "Four...,  Plus four?",  he asked. 

-  "Eight?", she whimpered. 

-  "Righto!  And how much change should we give him?"  She just shrugged and looked at me apologetically.

-  "Well then....",  he snitted.  "I guess it doesn't matter."  He reached into the pile of money and started to give me a fistful. 


-  He handed me the correct change.  "Sorry", he said to me.  "She's just like her mother."

-  I don't know why I chose to continue her pain, but I did.  "So!", I said (mimicking her father), "I would like to take this twelve dollars and donate two to your 'Help the Wounded Warriors' box."  I held the two ones in my left hand, the ten in the other.  "How much will that leave me?" 

-  She looked pained.  Her dad looked more pained and turned away.

-  I gave the ten a little shake, and her eyes lit up. 

-  "Ten!!"  She puffed her chest out.  Her Dad looked back, shocked.  "Right!", he huffed.

-  I put the two dollars in the slotted reciever, winked to her and said to her dad, "I'll bet her Mom is cute and a lot of fun, too." 

-  They put a third as many thin mints in a package as they used to.  Not many left in the rig when I got home.  I'm thoroughly busted.  I have  ten dollars.  Must go back.

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