|Her eyes are screaming.|
I walked around the store, doubling back now and then as I inevitably forgot something, and spent my time mentally killing everyone in my path. The woman examining a box of band-aids, somehow blocking two aisles: DEAD. The man careening one of those stupid car carts down an aisle while his screaming children orbited around it like flies on a turd: DEAD. The lady standing in front of the bananas, blocking the entire display with her cart, while she obliviously chattered away on her phone: DOUBLE DEAD.
As I walked down the baking aisle, scowling at the world in front me, my brain looked like this:
|I made this myself.|
And then this lady, an older woman who was being trailed by several grandchildren, started coming down the aisle. I was already mentally rolling my eyes as her grandchildren splintered away and she slowly rolled her cart down the very middle of the aisle. However, she maneuvered her cart to one side when she saw me and then she completely erased my bad mood. It was like magic.
“Do I need nutmeg? Hmm, I can’t remember if I need nutmeg,” she said to the grandchildren who were no longer behind her. She kept walking, paying no mind, then looked straight at me.
“What do you think, honey? Do I need nutmeg?” she asked.
And without even thinking, I blurted out, “Of course, you can never have too much nutmeg. I bet you’ll be glad you have it.” She laughed and thanked me for my help, then continued making her way down the aisle as I exited the other end, grinning like a fool.
It reminded me, almost exactly, of a commencement speech David Foster Wallace gave called This is Water. Have you heard it? Here, just watch it. I know ten minutes of internet video is like ten hours of real time, but I promise you that it’s worth it.
I wish I could tell you that, after my short interaction with that lady, I made a conscious effort to pull my head out of my ass and remind myself that no one else in the store really wanted to be there either, and maybe I did, for a few moments, until someone else entered my glare zone. So, you know. Can't really put that one in the win column.
Although, at least I’ve got the perspective now, right? And just in time for Thanksgiving, too.