Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Dagney's Voice Became Shrill ©2013 by Joe Sixtop all rights reserved

     What was my problem last time? Oh yeah; I was whining about some folks I feel like should of been a little more thoughty ("Fucktarded Whims," May, 2013). And the time before that? I was pretty unhappy about work wanting us to solicit charitable donations from our clients. That's what this here installment right here is about, too. Then it'll be time to give that particular Sixtopic a rest. I think.

     You've seem 'em, mostly in retail establishments like Eckerd's® and Family Dollar®, but restaurants have 'em too sometimes: Smartphone-sized pieces of construction paper, shaped and printed like big, stylized aortas, flogging The American Heart Association, stars for Make-A-Wish and the popular shamrocks, benefiting, uh, The Lucky Charms® Foundation for Magical Deliciousness. Merchants sell these decals, usually for a buck, with proceeds (allegedly) going to the designated worthy cause. If you spring for one, you're emcouraged to write your name, or whatever, on it. The personalized pieces of colorful paper are then taped to the cash registers and walls throughout the property. When asked, I'll usually get a charity sticker. I tend to write something smartass (but not dirty) on mine. Until the disappointing CD was finally released in 2008, I'd buy a decal and scribble "Chinese Democracy?" and sign it W. Axl Rose, which I (and probably no one else) thought was hilarious.
     All through March, our store was selling paper Easter eggs to benefit The Osgood-Schlatter Syndrome Awareness Center. We have a similar campaign, helping whatever, every couple of years or so. This time, our managers were really adamant that we move a lot of stickers. Obviously, their bosses were pressing them for our store to sell a lot of paper Easter eggs.
     I work Curvesideto-go—where you can phone or fax in your order and I'll bring it out to your ride—on weekday lunches. I've got a lot of regulars and I do all right with it. One of my most frequent regulars is a nice white lady named Dagney, who I'm accustomed to seeing five times a month, easy. She always orders just one lunch, with few or zero special mods. She always receives her chow in a timely manner, without any problems. She always tips me either one dollar or two dollars, five if it's right before Christmas. Dagney's in her early 60's, dresses well and conservatively, seems to get her hair done a lot and drives a sharp, late-model Mercedes®. She works for a non-profit organization, I don't know which one. I'm aware that she's married to a prominent local physician. Together, they've got to be pulling down some pretty nice coin.
     Early in March, when the Osgood-Schlatter push was just getting underway, Dagney pulled up to get an order she'd called in. Everything went as usual until I asked her to buy an Easter egg. Dagney's voice became shrill and she got pretty flustered. She began stammering about how she has a substantial charity budget and it's all earmarked for her church and the non-profit she works for and she just couldn't do anything about Osgood-Schlatter, which I construed as a no. Oh well. I smiled, thanked Dagney (she tipped me as always) and told her I'd see her soon.
     But I didn't see her soon. She didn't show up again for over a month. When I thought about the situation later, I was a little irritated with Dagney for being weird—not too much, because otherwise she's always been real cool and nice—but mostly I was pissed off at work itself for setting me up to be in a situation so redolent of awkwardness. Plus I didn't like that it looked as though the company and I were set to lose out on some nice potential future revenue.
     About mid-April, Dagney returned. I mentioned how we'd missed her and she said something about having been real busy. It looks like she's back to being my easy, good, regular customer again and the whole ordeal seems to have been forgotten. By everyone save me.

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