Those of you who have known me a long time...and by that, those of you who knew me before children, before the children went to school, and before the children grew up and got jobs and decided they didn't need me...know that I've been a person who cared about what other people thought. I mean, not nearly as much as my mother, no one could possibly care about what other people think than my mother, but I cared. I tried to be polite and dress nicely if for no other reason than my parents would think I would a good kid who didn't cause trouble. (And, unfortunately, I pretty much was a harmless kid who didn't get into any trouble.)
As I've gotten older, however, I've found that how much I care about what other people think has gotten to be a smaller and smaller part of my brain space. People make comments, well meaning comments, that devastate and hurt. You know what they are, whether you've said them yourself (and we all have I'm sure) or whether someone's said them to you (also, it's happened to all of us.)
Over the years many such comments have been tossed my way, mostly from well meaning people who just want me to be a better me, or a less "me" than I already am. But from cooking to organ playing to rearing my kids and allowing them to be the humans they want to be whether they're perfect or not, (by the way, thanks to those helpful comments, I don't cook often and I never play organ...so there's that.) I've all but stopped caring what people say about me. At my age I know who I am and what I am, and yes, I have my shortcomings and I have a big mouth and I'm irreverent, sometimes bawdy. But my goal in life is to make people laugh and feel comfortable. I tell stories that make me look a little stupid so that others forget their own troubles for a few minutes and feel great joy that they aren't me, living in my world. (I should get that cross stitched on something.)
To that end, I tell you this story so that you can feel better about yourself, or maybe maybe make you happy that you're you and not me.
This past Saturday my mother and I were supposed to go to the City of Brookfield Farmer's market, like we've been doing for much of the summer. She was to sell her pictures, I was to sell my books. Well, all last week I watched weather reports and I knew it was going to be 29 degrees (That's Fahrenheit, for all my Non-US readers) and it was going to be cold. I didn't have a problem, but my books don't break in cold weather. I checked in with her on Friday and asked if we were going. She said yes.
|In our very sexy winter gear for the Packer Game.|
We got about ten minutes away from the Market and I get a call from my mother...who has just read the instructions on her tube of hot glue (something she uses in all of her pictures) and apparently cold is not good for hot glue. So, nope, we're not doing the Market.)
So there we are. It's cold, it's still dark, we're starving because I was going to get donuts at the gas station on the way to the market and I didn't yet, and I'm dressed in enough layers of clothing to be bullet proof. Hubby suggests we go to breakfast. My favorite meal in the world is breakfast in a restaurant. I never say no to that!
We head to a lovely little local spot, The ORIGINAL Pancake House. I don't know how many of these there are, but there's only one close to us and the place is always packed. But we figured it would be less so since it wasn't yet 7 AM.
We were right. The parking lot was empty except for one pick up truck. But heavenly smells floated
out of the restaurant and I knew two things: 1) We were going to wait the 20 minutes it would take for them to open because I didn't want to eat any place else and 2) I needed to get a couple layers of clothing off because I was already sweating and when I sweat my skin gets itchy and when my skin gets itchy I can't sit still and it's VERY hard to drink coffee and eat breakfast when you're bouncing around like you have fire fleas.
Here's the thing though...have you ever tried to undress in a car? Even taking off a coat involves body contortion and removing socks and...yep, long underwear, well that just can't get done in a car seat. I have a great vehicle for changing clothes. You can lay the back seats down and there's plenty of room and the windows are tinted. Unfortunately, on Saturday, every square inch of space was occupied by my Farmer's Market boxes.
So yes, I made sure the coast was clear and I stepped out of my car into the frosty air and I removed three layers up top and a layer of socks and yes, the long underwear came off. I then got properly dressed and got back in the car and announced, "I have a blog post."
To which Hubby said, "You just undressed and dressed with your head on a swivel and now you're going to tell all your readers about it including several people at our church?"
Yep....because at this point while I don't care to have anyone see it, I don't mind telling you about the time I had to strip in the Pancake House parking lot.
But lest you think my life is all glamour and awesome, I had to go to the Sam's Club Pharmacy today...and I didn't time it right. I went after 2. You need to get there before 1:30. After 2 is when all the old people get there after the first movie matinee of the day and before dinner at Perkins.
I get there and I'm kicking myself (which is fun to watch) because there's one woman ahead of me and ahead of her is a man.
But then I get in line, after running a footrace with a gaggle of 90 year olds. No WAY was I getting behind THAT cloud of old. Good news, all those early morning walks paid off. I can out walk a group of people in their 90's...so long as they pause in front of the Depends display.
The old man at the counter has clearly been there for a while. how long? Well, the pharmacist, who would rather just stand in the back and not talk to people, is actually talking to people at a little auxiliary window because this guy has the place backed up....how backed up...worse than a 90 year old on Tylenol 3 during a prune juice drought. (Some of you are howling at that and some of you don't know what Tylenol 3 can do to you.)
Anyway, I'm about ready to be upset by the old guy when I hear the following exchange:
"There's nothing we can do for you," says the snarky clerk who always looks at me like I have warts.
"That's what you people told me yesterday. I waited forever and then you tell me there's no time, you're out, whatever."
Clerk moves the GIANT bag of what I surmise to be his life giving meds away from him and says, "I'm sorry, but you're out so we can't help you."
I don't know if this was a problem with his insurance or what. I'm still getting over the fact that he's been there two days in a row. Wow...
"Oh sure. You all say that. We can't help you. Go over here. Stand in this mile long line. Wait for nothing. But we can't help you."
I WANTED TO KISS THAT WRINKLY OLD MAN ON THE LIPS. THIS WAS MY NEW HERO!
The snarky clerk got the even snarkier clerk over to help her and they both them told him they couldn't help him. While smirking and basically rolling their eyes at him and sharing with everyone in line just how dumb they thought he was. Meanwhile, I was falling in love.
"Oh yeah. You can't help me. You couldn't help me yesterday. "
"Well today is a whole new day," says UBER SNARK.
Seriously? She's all, "today's a new day" and they're doing the same thing to this guy?
They finally get him to move on so that old Lady McSuper slow can inch her walker up to the counter and spend some quality time chatting about how stupid the old man was. Meanwhile, It's like Night of the Living Dead in line behind me with oldsters grumping about standing so long and some sucking on their oxygen very impatiently.
By the time Lady McSuper Slow and the Two Snarks are done ripping my new favorite person (loudly enough for me to hear and I'm behind the sign that tells us how far away we have to be for everyone to have privacy)I've been in line almost ten minutes and I'm grumpy. I walk up and they're going to treat me like their new snarky best friend but no, sorry, I'm not all that enthused about knowing that they yap about customers behind their backs. Sure, the guy was loud, but from I surmised he had a right to be and even if he didn't you don't talk about him behind his back to other customers.
When I get old I hope I have half that guy's courage so I too can tell off some snark infested pharmacy clerk at Sam's Club.
But hey, the highlight of my courage for the week was undressing in deserted sub freezing parking lot. I may not be on the right track.