Friday, February 15, 2008
Two Cents and Coffee
There's a little Starbucks in the basement of "Whitehead," the reaserch building connected to mine.
Today, as the cashier dug at getting out my change, I noticed that on the wall behind her hung a new large calendar without a single scribbled-in event.
“You need to start writing things on your calendar,” I said, offering my totally unsolicited opinion, but then the dear woman had already allowed as how she’d chip in the two cents I’d forgotten, once again, for making easy change.
“Well, my boss wants me to take it down. But, The People in the building put it up.”
These people (scientists) are also, presumably, the ones who have put up the sign: “No animals may exit this door.” - a sign that stuns me and to which I take personal exception every time I go for coffee.
But, getting back to the calendar, What was one to do?
It appeared she’d decided to do nothing.
She just sat there in her quiet, Southern, secretly amused Black manner.
She wasn’t going to take the calendar down, nor was she going to actually use it.
I thanked her for my coffee and moved on.
As I added my half and half and stirred in my sugar substitute, images of the one and only time my sister gave me a driving lesson came drifting up.
Traffic was kind of heavy when suddenly Sandy yelled, “Get over!”
So, I did. I jerked the wheel and just like that we were in the right hand lane.
However, there was no placating her.
“DON’T EVER change lanes without looking! Jesus!”
“Well, you said 'GET OVER'!”
Then I heard the soft replay, that gentle (tired?) voice of the coffee cashier.
“It’s confusing, ain’t it.”
I loved her gentle detachment. It was perfect Presence.
I started chuckling, my first laughter in awhile, and made my exit via the door that animals are not supposed to use.