On a mission to expedite Saturday errands, my husband and I were at a big box store as the doors opened. Ten minutes later we headed toward checkout when a cashier, standing in front of her empty lane, motioned us over with morning cheerfulness. She offered a bit of friendly chit-chat while processing our items. Overall, it was a pleasant shopping experience: fast – efficient – friendly.
But that changed as a man approached the line. With a place for your cart and a place to pay, the man inadvertently put his cart in the wrong lane. As he did, the friendly cashier with a smile, welcomed the man and asked him to please put his cart through on her side.
A not-for-publication expletive came from his mouth, as he strongly pushed the cart in her direction, hitting her from behind. There was a collective pause. She looked at him, we looked at him, other customers and employees looked at him. What seemed long, but in reality was a few seconds, was the waiting to see if this was going to escalate into an explosive incident.
It didn’t. Obviously angry at the world, or life, or something, he’d reacted quite inappropriately to a minor request. I doubt he intended to hit her with his cart; perhaps that error in judgment caused him to step back a bit. I’ll never know, but what I do know is this: for a few seconds, I wasn’t the only person watching to see (continue reading →)