I was on my way back to Fargo the other day and stopped in Jamestown shortly after noon for a quick lunch. We don't have many Hardee's in Fargo so thought I'd try that for a change. As I approached the counter to order, a man in his 50's to early 60's greeted me with "HOOOO, HOOOO, HOOOO for here or to GOOOO". Very clever, I thought. There is someone who is truly in the Christmas spirit (Yes, Christmas, not "Holiday"...so if you're offended, too bad, it's my blog). His joyful and uninhibited tone seemed contagious. His red and green Christmas tie and Santa hat brought it all together. This was the perfect person to greet hungry customers. What a pleasant change from some of the rush and grumblings about the season.
"Your order is #52" he said and he proudly handed me one of the little red plastic number tents.
"OK", I thought to myself. "I haven't ordered yet but guess I have my number already....this guy is efficient."
"Will you be having a sandwich or soup and salad today", he asked.
"Hmmmmm..." I considered my options. I need to lose weight and have high cholesterol so should go with the salad. "I'll have a #7"
"Did you want to super size your meal?"; I didn't.
"Curly or regular fries?", I took regular - by now readers, you guessed I didn't go with the salad.
"And do you qualify for the SENIOR CITIZEN discount?" the moron asked sincerely.
" ", yes, I was speechless. I wasn't sure if he had actually asked that but there the dufus was, waiting for my answer. When I started talking, my mouth worked faster than my brain.
"First of all", I said harshly, "Do I look like I'd qualify for the senior citizen discount? I'm offended that you even asked". I don't know why I said "first of all", there wasn't a 2nd of all or a 3rd of all. Had there been, I doubt that I'd have said them in public.....but at this point, anything could have come out of my trap.
Honestly, I EXPECTED him to say "We ask that of everyone so as not to leave anyone out" followed by a plethora of apologies and maybe even get a free dessert to lessen his guilt. The manager will probably show up shortly to smooth things over, as my comment and disgust was obvious. After all, did this bumbling over-sized fake attempt at a Christmas elf, who really should be working in a non public job, actually think I deserved the SENIOR CITIZEN discount? What a putz this moron was.
But there the twit stood, with an expression that only said "WELL LOUD MOUTH......DO YOU QUALIFY?"
"NO, I DON'T" I got my meal and went to sulk at the furthermost table I could find. Then I listened, maybe he really does ask that of everyone and I just missed it. So I carefully listened as he greeted the next few people in line with his nauseating "ho, ho, ho, for here or to go" fake x-mas tone. Occasionally he'd ask someone about the discount.....but they were people that actually looked like they'd be over 55.
This incident has been wearing on me all week. Am I aging? I had seen a couple of my classmates in the past weeks and, yes, THEY have aged far more than I have. But then I got to thinking....there are a couple of tell tale signs that possibly make me appear over 40.
1) It seems to be cold a lot. I used to wear shorts and a t-shirt in the house year round. Sweat pants and a sweatshirt are my new best friends. I've even caught myself hanging my coat up at work when no one else is wearing one.
2) People don't talk as loud as they used to and some mumble too much. It isn't my hearing, it is the newer generations. And print is SO very fine. After living 35+ years with glasses, first thing on in the morning and last thing off at night, at times I actually have to take them off to read. The bifocals can't do it all.
3) Teenagers are getting married too young, having kids too soon, and working where I work - with attitude....and they don't look like they should even be out of school. We have new neighbors and when I met the 13 year old husband and father of 2, I said without thinking "You look so young".
4) I've been saying more of what is on my mind and caring less about how loud or who hears it. Truly, this is inherited from my mother.
5) It is supposed to be below 35 (not 35 below, but below 35), we should stay home. Previously, I loved winter and couldn't wait for snow storms. I'd be out with my snow blower saving the world. Now......I really hope the neighbor with the riding lawn mower/snow blower/4X4 John Deere garden tractor comes over before I make it out to clean the driveway - tomorrow night.
6) A few weeks back the kids were gone on a Friday evening to friend's houses. I said to Shirley "We have the place to ourselves for a while......we could always (wink, wink). Shirley, always quick to respond with an alternative plan said "We could.....or we could go out for supper". In a previous life, I'd have gone for the first "we could" in a heart-beat. However, I actually stopped to think about it before saying, "where should we go?".
7) I still like movies with action, violence, sex, gore, and manageable plots - but not too in depth. If I have to figure it out - it is not entertaining. That has not changed.
That's it.....I have to go, the Weather Channel is back on!!!