Wednesday, July 25, 2012

A Functional Adult Should Not Get This Irrationally Angry

I just had an encounter at the grocery store.  While I was checking out - a pretty large order, as a certain Functional Adult's parents are coming to visit soon - I realized I'd forgotten diet coke, which is imperative insofar as a Functional Adult's Mom needs diet coke to eat pizza, and a Functional Adult needs pizza to watch the opening ceremony of the Olympics, and a Functional Adult's Dad needs to watch the opening ceremony of the Olympics and inevitably comment on how it's not as good as the ceremony at Beijing was.  

So I needed diet coke.  The checker was still working on scanning many of my items, so I told him I'd be right back.  I literally dashed through the store to the soda aisle - realizing, as I did, that I nearly bowled over the same accommodating fellow who had made room for me in the egg aisle.  I grabbed the diet coke quickly (since I have the layout of my local Safeway memorized) and dashed back.  Couldn't have taken more than 90 seconds.

This is clutch.
In fact, when I got back, the checker hadn't even finished with the items I'd already put on the conveyer belt.  But some old woman had decided to push my cart with its remaining items aside and start putting her items on the belt!

I was somewhat astonished and pointed out, "That's my stuff."  She gave me an aggressively condescending look and said, "Well, you were gone."  I gave her my best "b*t¢h, you crazy!" look and said, "I was only gone a second!"  And then she gave me an extremely dirty look and said, "I waited at least FIVE minutes." 

At that point, I decided to let it go. I rolled my eyes a little at the checker but said, "Oh well, guess I wasn't as fast as I thought I was," and finished checking out.  Even though she kept shooting me looks.

I feel like when you do the nice thing and take the high road, you should get a pleasant sense of satisfaction at being a mature and kind member of society.  Or at least you should be able to forget about it quickly.  Neither of this happened to me:  as I drove home, I got madder and madder that I'd taken the high road.

I began to wish I'd used my words to rip that upjumped elderly to shreds.  I spent my entire car ride home coming up with various forms of cutting remarks I could have made to her:

Ad Hominem (making use of shopping cart observation): "So, this is how you get your jollies?  You just stand around at Safeway being snide to people for no apparent reason?  I'm guessing that's because you're sad and old with nothing better to do in your life, and you are going to DIE ALONE DRINKING AN 8-OZ CAN OF SODA."

Imposing the burden of proof / aggressive wagering:  "Really?  I was gone five minutes?  Prove it!  Let's see your stopwatch.  Oh, you didn't time it?  Yeah, I didn't THINK you knew what you were talking about."

Marshaling the evidence:  "FIVE MINUTES, you say?  
Even though the checker was still scanning the items I left on the belt?  What if I asked the checker how long I was gone?  What if I asked to see the store security footage?  Do you think that would show I was gone five minutes?  Or would it just show that old hags can be idiots too?"

Logical / Accepting her premise as true:  "I'm sorry, even if I were gone five minutes, what did you think was going to happen?  Did you think I was never coming back?  Or did you think the checker would just unscan the $150 worth of groceries that he had already scanned, scan yours, and then re-scan all of my items?  Or did you maybe not think at all because you don't have enough brain cells?"

Sarcastic:  "Oh, see, when I said I was only gone a little while, I meant in clock time.  But you're probably measuring in ugly old woman time."

With religious overtones:  "You're so old, you shouldn't be lying like this, because you're likely to die soon and you'll have to explain your lying ways in the afterlife."

AUGH.  I am STILL MAD I didn't say ALL OF THOSE THINGS TO HER.  Which is ridiculous, I know, because who cares some old woman shot me dirty looks in the checkout line over some diet coke.  Except I apparently care really deeply and now want to ruin an old woman's self esteem over it with any number of references to her age and impending death.

Aaaaaaaand here you have piece of evidence #284 I am still not a functional adult, because I cannot let crap go.

Item of Evidence #283.  Though, actually, I bought this for my parents.


  1. I like the sarcastic one best. And I share your rage. I've found, oddly enough, that I find my rage *more* difficult to suppress as I get older as opposed to less. Is it possible to de-mature? Craziness. Pure craziness.

  2. I TOTALLY get that. It just gets worst as you think about it. The worst one for me is if I get a ticket, and all the things I should have said to get out of the ticket or be snide after getting the ticket.