What Iâ€™m about to share falls into the later category.
On Thursday evening two weeks ago, LCB returned from a trip to Harris Teeter (a popular chain grocery store found in much of the South), put away the groceries, and sat down at his desk, his grocery receipt still in hand. I was working at my desk nearby, so LCB
began a monologue initiated a conversation with me. Suddenly, he looked down at his receipt and stopped talking mid-sentence. His jaw dropped.
He had been given the Thursday senior citizen discount on his receipt.
Yâ€™all, LCB is in his forties.Â
He sat there, stunned into an uncharacteristic muteness, so I tried to comfort him by chalking it up to some weird coding anomaly in the storeâ€™s discount pricing system. I assured him that no one sober and with full mental capacities would consider him a senior citizen.
â€œOr maybe it was a slip of the hand,â€ I suggested, now operating in full helpmate mode.
The next Thursday night, he walked into the house looking stricken.
â€œYou are not going to believe what happened to me,â€ he mouthed while finishing up a phone call and unloading some groceries he had just purchased.Â After he ended his call, I tried to guess what had happened. I threw out a few possibilities.
â€œOh no, itâ€™s way worse than any of those,â€ he responded. He fumbled with his words for a minute, his eyes wider than normal, and then out it came.
â€œThis time, the cashier point-blank asked me if I qualified for the senior citizen discount.â€
Yâ€™all, I tried not to laugh too hard.
But it wasnâ€™t my best attempt.
Clearly reeling from this most recent turn of events in a world now LCB-unfriendly, he grabbed his computer, determined to research the parameters of the senior citizen discount. He speculated that the discount might, in reality, have been softened to include anyone middle-aged and up.
Not really, it turns out. Well, not unless 60 is the new 40, anyway.
The only comfort I could then offer was to suggest that maybe Harris Teeter instructs its employees to offer it to anyone looking even remotely middle-aged, just to be safe.Â
He just stared at me, incredulous at my proffer.Â
I suppose it would be in bad taste to mention that today, on a very fine Thursday afternoon, I shopped at the very same Harris Teeter and was not offered the senior citizen discount.
As you may have guessed, thereâ€™s an abundance of bad taste floating around my house tonight.