Delicious with a scoop of ice cream on the side.
In a previous post, I detailed my uncanny ability to bring to a complete halt, any line that I get into. This is just one example.
There were two checkout lanes open. In the first lane there was a couple with two carts heaped over the top with groceries; in the second lane there was a women with two boxes of cook and serve vanilla pudding. I chose the second lane. I chose poorly.
I stood there for several moments while the woman and cashier discussed different types of pie. I found the bits of conversation about custard especially enthralling.
“Don’t you just love pie?” The woman turned to me and asked.
“I love all the Greek letters, but Pi is my favorite,” I told her.
They both looked at me like I was an idiot.
Finally the cashier picked up the first box and swiped it over the scanner. Nothing happened. She swiped it again. Again nothing happened. She swiped it a third time. And nothing happened for the third time. She swiped it again, and again, and again, and again, and again.
She paused for a moment to regroup, I think she might have been cramping up. She picked up the other box and swiped it several times. Still nothing. She sighed in exasperation as she stopped to visually inspect the bar code on the box.
“Why don’t it try it one more time,” I encouraged her, “you know what they say: the 89th time is the charm.”
She called Ted for a price check. Ted grumpily grabbed one of the boxes and stomped away with it.
As we waited for Ted’s return, the woman regaled us with stories about the pair of cardinals nesting in her yard. “One’s male and one’s female,” she said, displaying a strong grasp of how reproduction works. “Unless they’re gay cardinals,” she chortled. They both laughed hysterically.
“I think the Pope has a policy against gay cardinals,” I told her.
They both looked at me like I was an idiot again. You get used to it.
As we waited for Ted’s return, a line was beginning to form behind me.
Ted returned with a price and a box of pudding. He plopped it down on the conveyor as he turned to leave.
“Wait a minute Ted,” I said quickly.
He spun around and screeched at me in a high pitched, cartoon villain voice, “My name is not Ted.”
“Holy crap,” the guy behind me exclaimed.
“My name is Tad,” he continued, lowering his voice a few octaves.
“Sorry. I thought it was Ted.”
“It’s not Ted,” he spit the words at me. “It’s not Ted at all. It’s Tad.”
“Anyway Tad,” I said being careful to enunciate, “that’s not the right kind of pudding.”
“What do mean,” he demanded.
“You took a box of vanilla cook and serve pudding. That’s a box of vanilla instant pudding.”
“I must have picked up the wrong kind,” he said sheepishly.
“Why did put the other box down in first place?” The man behind me wanted to know.
“I was looking for the price,” Tad said defensively.
“You can’t hold something in your hand and look for something at the same time?” The man continued his line of questioning.
“I don’t know,” Tad stammered, “I’ll go get the right kind.” He grabbed the box and hurried away.
“I thought you said his name was Ted,” I told the cashier.
“I thought it was,” she replied.
Tad returned and slapped the box down on the conveyor.
“That’s not the right kind either,” I told him dejectedly.
“What? That’s instant.”
“Yes it is,” I confirmed, “but it’s also tapioca.”
“What’s the difference,” he demanded.
“Mostly the tapioca,” I explained.
“It’s a bigger difference than Ted and Tad,” the man behind me grumbled.
Tad snatched the box from the conveyor and stormed away again.
“Perhaps you should call for someone with a more responsible sounding name,” I suggested to the cashier.
“He’s a @$#$% idiot,” the man behind me declared.
“I think he just has dexterity problems,” I told the man.
“He’d better learn some dexterity pushing a mop.” The man was resolute in his opinion.
Tad returned and slapped a box of vanilla cook and serve pudding onto the conveyor. “There, that’s the right kind,” he announced triumphantly.
“Way to go hero,” the man behind me said sarcastically.
As I was leaving the store, I could see the couple with the two carts of groceries, loading the last of it into their car. Once again the line that I had chosen had come to an abrupt halt.
Also, I suddenly had a craving for Pie.
Tad’s future, according to the man behind me.