I hate returning beer bottles. It’s one of those menial tasks that you have to do because your garage can’t fit normal garage-y things anymore because your empties have taken over and declared WW3 on your household. I’ve been getting bitched at for the last 3 weeks to do it, and the level of bitching finally surpassed my desire to not return them.
Why is it that every time I go with cans, the can machine is broken. And when I have a ton of glass, the glass machine is out of order! Well, today I had glass, and yet again…BROKEN. The kind 16-year-old employee was already on it, which was a good sign. Instead of ditching the bottles due to sheer impatience, I waited. Behind 3 other people. UGH.
So the last guy goes—the only one standing in between me, my bottle returns, and my penultimate freedom from Stop and Shop. He’s old, balding, in his 80’s, and can barely move. I don’t understand why he doesn’t let ME go first, I thought. He clearly has nothing better to do than be here right at this very moment wasting my time! He slowly empties his entire shopping cart of bottles and as he works, I can’t stop thinking bad things about him. He finishes and turns to me: “I went as fast as I could!” with a smile.
Oof. I felt kinda bad. He has a family that loves him, I’m sure. I hope strangers are nice to my dementia-stricken grandfather when he’s out in public. Ok… Old Guy – 1, Nick-0, and I may also be going to hell.
I finish up, collect my $2.15 and decide to go for a coffee in the convenient grocery store location of Dunkin Donuts. What the hell else am I going to do with $2 dollars? I head to DnD. Old Guy is slightly in front of me, in a scooter. I don’t want to pass him, cuz that’s awkward, but I don’t want to avoid getting coffee for fear of one of those “Hey, are you following me?!” bad jokes either. Then the worst happens: he goes into the DnD line.
I’ll keep my distance behind him so he won’t see me. I just really don’t want one of those awkward run-ins with the locals. I feel even worse about my previous impatience, seeing as the guy is in a scooter and can’t really walk that well.
But then he orders a coffee. And muffins. AND a half dozen donuts. THEN he pays with a credit card.
And all I could think was: You fucking bastard.
Old Guy- 2, Nick- 0. Game, set, and match.