This weekend was exhausting, thanks to the newly returned Zoe who has instituted “Bootcamp Saturdays” which meant I spent all of Sunday sore. Thus, I was in no mood Sunday morning when I stood in line at Safeway amidst the cast of Cocoon. The elderly man in line in front of me briefly excused himself to grab some last minute BenGay or Depends, and as soon as he left, it was of course, his turn to be checked out.
Nurse Ratchet behind me couldn’t take this and tapped me on the shoulder. “Excuse me, but please move forward.”
“Oh, well there’s a guy in line in front of me who ran to grab something. He’ll be right back.”
“It’s very rude to call someone a guy. You should refer to him as a gentleman.”
Oh my god.
I was so caught off guard, I could barely muster a response. And all I could come up with was, “Well, I certainly didn’t mean to be rude.”
She sighed. “People of your generation simply have no manners.”
Oh hell no.
Suddenly, I channeled my inner Julia Sugarbaker.
“I am 28 years old, with a career and a mortgage. It is quite literally my job to be charming and have manners, and having been raised in a household in which manners where of utmost priority, I can assure you that it’s far more inappropriate to correct a perfect stranger than it is for me to politely inform you that the DUDE in line before us stepped away for a moment. Perhaps you might want to turn that judgmental eye inward, because you are completely out of line.”
She registered no look of shock or shame, her mind clearly not changed but what I felt was a marvelous statement on behalf of young adults everywhere.
The “guy” in front of us arrived with his dried, pitted prunes. He smiled at me.
I turned to Emily Post in line behind me, “You’re welcome, gorgeous.”
He laughed. “Boy, oh boy. You just made my day.”
He paid for his items and left, leaving me trapped alone with the witch who’s convinced I’m the downfall of civilization. Angrily pretending to ignore each other, I paid for my groceries, grabbed my bags and turned to her one last time.
“Have a lovely day!” I screamed, and stormed out of Safeway, scouring the streets for a little old lady to help across an intersection…