Saturday, April 13, 2013

L is for Lines

Today I was waiting in line at Costco to pickup my prescription.  When I got there I was 5th in a slow line.  By the time one customer was cared for- 4 or 5 other people were in line behind me.  Now, at Costco, a line just kinda forms down one of the aisles and as good citizens and Costco cardholders one would seek out that line and find their place at the end of it. 
After roughly 20 minutes I was second line.  I stood behind an elderly couple... probably in their eighties.  As we were waiting there a man came walking towards the pharmacy from the aisles of groceries.  I'd peg him in his late fifties early sixties.  He was obviously eye-ing the Pharmacy.  And get this... he walks up, sees the line, and takes his place... next to the couple in their eighties.  Not behind them... not at the back of the line where he was supposed to go.  The pharmacist says, "Next" and the man gestures for the really old couple to go first.  Oh how generous he is!  To let the people who have been waiting to go ahead of him.  What a gem.
At this point, I'm getting that really hot ball in my heart.  The one I get before I pick a fight with a stranger. I can feel it coming... an unnecessary quarrel.  So I tell myself, Patty.  Patty.  Listen.  He's older than you.  Respect your elders.  Ken is waiting in the car with the kids.  Just stay calm.  Make this easy and let him go first.  It doesn't matter that he "broke rules."  You're not his mom.  This isn't your place.  Just... leave it.  But my feet started shuffling and I was biting my lips and my hands were white fists.
The elderly couple was swiping their card.  The time was coming.
Out of the corner of my eye I see the line cutter looking at me.  What was his plan?  To pretend he's been in line for 20 minutes?
"Next."
Me and the guy who jipped in line met eyes.
A wave of the hand would have been easy.  I can't do it!
So:
Patty:  Do you think you are next?
Man: (head tilted smiling)  I just need to get some pills.
Patty:  (head tilting and also smiling)Yeah.  We all just need to get some pills.  That's why we're waiting in line at the Pharmacy.
Man:  Yeah.  But it'll be so quick.
Patty:  I don't think you should be allowed to cut everyone in line because you think it'll be "so quick."  Mine will be quick too.  The people behind me will be quick.  We all planned on just running in and running out.  Didn't work that way today.
Man:  I don't really need to be in that line for what I need.
Patty:  Hmmm.  Really?  I had to be in that line.  But-  if you think you can get what you need in less than 30 seconds.  You can go.  And I will be timing you!

The guy smiled.  As he was walking towards the counter he asked for a bottle of some Gold Mineral Vitamins or something.  The pharmacy tech tossed him a bottle that was kept on the shelves behind the counter.  The man caught it, as he was still walking.  He held it up to me with a wink and smile.  I couldn't help but smiling back.  He gave me a pat on the back and told me "Thanks."  We had bonded.
See?  All kind of fun things can happen when you're waiting in line.

But uh... as a P.S.... it doesn't always end so pleasantly.
This one time I fought with a man a Winco about bagels.  Post here.
Or another time this lady at the University Bookstore wouldn't let me sell books back.  Enjoy here.
One time a neighbor passive aggressive-ly put an op ed article in my mailbox about dogs barking.  That didn't work.  Read the face to face confrontation here.

I don't look for these situations.  They find me. 
That and I listen to a lot of Jock Jams.


Last Year's A to Z : L is for Longevity  I think the perfect age is 60 and I explain why I can't wait to have my AARP card.

7 comments:

Rowena said...

Great story, I don't think I would have been as generous as you and let him push in...out of principle! It's always the older generation I find trying to sneak into the queue, especially waiting for say a bus, why is that??

Juli said...

Yeah... I have had those moments as well. Sadly, I'm a sucker and I usually let them go without so much as a word.

Rowena said...

Hey Patty....

I have nominated you for a Liebster Award....(I really enjoy your blog!)

I dont know if it means much to be honest. Check out my blog (and the 2 x bloggers who nominated me) for the rules and its upto you if you decide to do the questions etc

Me said...

Am I reading about myself...??? I always had situations like this and every time I try to be quite but the devil in me just gets out.

Enjoyed your post! :)

-Fellow blogger from A to Z!

Francene Stanley said...

I loved your real-life story--and the happy ending. You had me siding with you all the way. The cheek of him. Then came the reward for your semi-tollerance. Great.
Francene.
A - Z Challenge
http://francene-wordstitcher.blogspot.co.uk/

Connie Gruning said...

You did good! Why are people so rude? UGH!!! I hope where ever he is right this minute that he is in line... a LONG line!
A to Z buddy
Peanut Butter and Whine

Misha Gericke said...

Line-cutters annoy me too. I mean, they could just ask. But no, it doesn't work that way, it seems.

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