Monday, September 14, 2009


So today's encounter is brought to you by Ketchup.

I say this, because I have been watching with increasing horror as the bottle of ketchup in the fridge has drawn closer and closer to empty.

You see, some people need oxygen to survive, and while that is all well and good, I personally, need ketchup. Perhaps not need, but definitely use, in large quantities.

So when the line of remaining ketchup had reached critical, I set forth outside and next door, to the grocery store. Where I procured a new bottle of ketchup, along with some juice, and cereal. Then I went to stand in line. Now I do not know what the occasion was, but the couple in front of me were attempting to acquire some cigars. They ended up going with an it's a boy, and an it's a girl cigars, but they also looked at a wide variety of ones that had nothing to do with childbirth. So I cannot say for certain that there was anything to do with babies and this couple in front of me.

Whatever the reason, it was taking forever, the cigars wouldn't scan, and the computer didn't recognize the UPC code when it was typed in. I stood there, while the cashier bravely tried and retried to get the computer to respond, and then continued waiting after her manager came over and fixed the problem only for her to have to now ring up the second cigar.

Then the man paid for the cigars with change, not cash, change, over a dollar worth in pennies, and the rest in nickels, dimes, and quarters. Truly, it was a checkout line that would not have felt out of place in the eighth circle of hell.

Finally I reach the counter, "Long day?" I ask
"I don't understand it," she replies, "that's the fifth person today that has paid with change, and earlier today I had to make change for a fifty, and the guy wanted it all in quarters, dollars, and fives"
"I can't figure out whether it's some colossal joke, or just a weird coincidence"

We chatted a bit more, about how quickly the weekend had gone by, wishing life wasn't so busy, etc.

This has led me to realize something that I think I always kinda knew:
Given the chance, people desperately want to talk about their lives

Especially to strangers, because you can be more honest, you don't have to candy coat how something affected you because you don't have to worry about hurting a stranger's feelings.

So when the girl behind the counter tells me that not only is work stressful but that her roommate keeps coming and going at all hours, loudly, you shouldn't be surprised.

Still, I'm surprised that people are willing to tell to someone they don't know intimate details of their lives.

Anyway, on to learning more about other people, perhaps more than I wanted or needed to know.

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