Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Random, Party of One

The girls and I hit Lowe's yesterday for a quick, in-and-out, dash for a couple of project necessities. We appeared to have made it out unscathed when WHAM, in the check-out lane, Captain Random appeared.

In case you don't know me well enough, let me explain quickly that I am a talker...yep, quite the chatter box by nature. I don't have what one might call "an issue" with striking up a conversation with anyone. Most of the time this is a great characteristic of mine; however, once in a blue moon it leaves me open for an unseen act of randomness.

To set the stage, I was having what one might call "an icky day" yesterday, so I decided to cure it the best way I know how.....playing with my girls. We loaded up the car and headed off to hit a couple of quick errands, grab an Amy's cheese pizza for lunch (total yumminess if you've never had one) and then head home for some snuggles and projects in the craft room. Lowe's was our last stop before the grocery store.

We had our three plants from the clearance section (which is really the only place someone like me should ever buy plants as I don't exactly have what you might say is a "green thumb"....that apparently skipped me in the gene allocation pool exercise), some Liquid Plumber and a few screws and we headed for the check-out. Looky there, see how all the checkers wait at the entrances of their lanes to show you how eager they are to help you with your purchases? Ahhhhh, there's a strapping young lad who looks excited to help us. And into the trap, I mean, lane we turn.

We begin the check-out process. As usual, I'm talking to one daughter, playing with the feet of the other (she's in a car seat, no judgment please), watching to ensure that all items ring up appropriately (still not sure why I don't think checkers can do it without my assistance) and carrying on a conversation with the Michael, the checker. "Did that ring up correctly?" he asked me. Foiled!!! He knows what I'm doing....perhaps I should be more casual in the future, eh?

The conversation continues. I'm swiping my card through the impersonal, modern card machine when he tells me that the scanner didn't read my card. I handed it to him, innocently unaware of what that gesture would cause. "Thanks," he says as he takes my card and swipes it in his NASA designed control panel (seriously, who needs THAT many buttons?), "remember checks?" I smiled, "Yeah, it was a lot easier then wasn't it?" "And more personal too. I used to talk to people a lot more when we didn't have these machines." Wow, a man after my own heart! I laughed, "I bet!" "Guess we should think about that before 2012, right?" Silence......uhmmmmmm.........what?

Quick.....recover your obvious facial expression Rebecca.....say something.....anything! "I know. Guess all you can do is plan, right?" My brain goes back to processing.....what the hell did he just say? Please rewind that conversation and play it back for me if you don't mind auditory, latches on to everything you say brain. Yep, yep, conversation makes sense, yep, yep....WHAM! Nope, never saw that little moment of random drive-by coming....wow!

"I know, that Nostradamus has been right about everything else. We only have 2 years and 4 months really. Guess we should have some kind of a global summit to get everything together and figure out how to fix it; I mean, he told us what was going to happen, but we still have time to fix things." "I know, guess all we can do is plan and hope we get it right, ya know?" I replied in a state of confusion.

All the while, as the conversation continues, I can hear myself clearly thinking "just drop the damn card in your purse, don't bother with the wallet.....get the receipt.....no, forget the receipt, we don't need it.....start moving the cart forward, but not to fast, stay casual here.....Ryan, stop talking, focus on the exit with Mommy.....slowly.....slowly.....open you damn automatic doors, open I command you!"

Color me perplexed when I got to the sweet sanctuary of my Gypsie, the sticker covered activist mobile. I quickly loaded the girls in the car, tossed the "last chance at life" clearance plants in the back and started the engine. What was THAT all about? Since I believe that everything happens for a reason and that there really isn't such thing as chance or happenstance, I wondered as I drove away, what was I supposed to learn or glean from that particular situation? What was the Universe trying to teach me at that moment? And then it hit me.....whenever you're having a bad day or you're just not fully on your interpersonal game, embrace the bloody self-checkout lanes for your own protection!

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