This one time, at band camp – just kidding. I was at a Publix supermarket the other day, and while I am not a big gambler, I bought into the slogan, “You can’t win if you don’t play.” So, every week I play my lucky numbers at lotto. I’ll admit, I haven’t been so lucky. I stopped at the machine that dispenses my favorite scratch-off tickets, and there was an unusually long wait. There was a gentlemen on a scooter already at the machine buying $100 worth of tickets, and another lady waiting before me with a handful of cash, so I knew it would be a while before my turn. Moments later, this blonde woman, who had just finished purchasing lotto tickets from the customer service counter, cut in front of me. She knew I was standing there, but she didn't seem to care. She had that natural frown that some people have, you know - the corners of the mouth naturally slant downward. I imagine that this happens to people whose laugh muscles have atrophied from lack of smiling, causing the sad condition of permanent frowning. I wasn’t in any real rush, so I didn’t mind. What I did mind, was her lack of patience for the gentlemen on the scooter still buying tickets until his $100 credit ran out. We’re all waiting our turn, and she even got to cut ahead - still, she was huffing and puffing the entire time. She even had the nerve of making some rude and insensitive comments about the gentlemen under her breath ("Take longer, why don't you. Can he move any slower?"). After about fifteen minutes of waiting and whining, it was finally the impatient woman’s turn to use the machine. She placed a twenty dollar bill and then a five dollar bill into the machine. Suddenly, my lovely, informal supermarket friend, carrying a shopping bag in each hand, walked quickly and swiftly in between us, inadvertently bumping the surly lotto purchaser into the machine as she exited the store. Then, we both heard a beep and a card drop out onto the tray – a $20 lotto scratch-off – and not the one the surly blonde wanted. She was so mad, she looked around, arms wailing, “what the fffff,” her voice trailed off on the curse word. She chose her remaining credited five dollar scratch-off and angrily left the store.
I couldn’t help but laugh and smile to myself. I was the last in line, so I was the only one who got to see karma’s poetry in motion. My lovely, informal supermarket friend may as well have been wearing a cape on top of her pretty dress. I know she never meant to bump that woman into the machine, but I also know that she has no idea how she never fails to make my day!
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