the shop worker shops
I’m in a shop
that doesn’t employ me
perusing the condiments aisle
and I see one bottle of tomato sauce
is slightly out of line
with all the others
and my training kicks in:
I go over to the shelf
and I twist it around
so that the label is front facing
like all the others,
when this old lady comes up to me
and she says, do you work here?
and I’m about to tell her to fuck off
when she asks: where’d you keep your fridge chicken?
not frozen, she wags a finger, no.
the FRIDGE chicken?
and I’m about to tell her to fuck off again
but then that initiative kicks in,
that very particular initiative
of someone who has spent
their entire adult life on minimum wage:
third aisle, I hear myself say, because
fridge meats are always in the third aisle.
oh, thank you so much, she says. and thank you
for being open during these dangerous times,
she adds. it’s really appreciated.
then off she goes, towards aisle 3 …
nicest customer I’ve ever had
and I wasn’t even at work.
Copyright ©2020 All Rights Reserved