What Happens When You Are the Problem?
There are a few things I’d like to say to the woman screaming at the gas station cashier
Ten minutes after I walked into that 7–11 I thought I was on one of those hidden game shows like “What Would You Do?”.
It didn’t take long for this lady to freak out in line. When she came in, she seemed pleasant enough, holding her daughter’s hand as they browsed the aisles. She’d even offered a, “hello! How are you?” to the young woman behind the counter, who was certainly there to work instead of cater to a fire-breather in yoga pants and Sketchers. The problems all started with receipt paper. They’d run out of it right as they’d tried to print hers.
“I’m sorry!” the girl told the woman, “Give me a second while I refill it, okay?”
Not a big deal right? The average person would’ve been like, “no problem,” right?
Not this lady.
I was behind her when all the action started and had a clear view of her exploding on the girl, who started to tear up right away, about how she needed to fix it, and how she was ruining her day.
All the typical Karen complaints.
Everyone in line and around the store did nothing to stop her, either. They put all their energy into avoiding eye contact. The only one who reacted was me, her daughter tugging on her sleeve to stop, and the little boy giving side-eye by the milk.
The woman was still screaming by the time I got up to the counter.
“I think she’s had enough,” I told her, but it didn’t put a dent in her tirade.
I finished my transaction as she hollered nonsense, doing my best to convey my sympathy through eye contact with the girl, because we’ve all been there.
Fortunately, this is when the woman decided to storm off, but not before ending her rant by yelling, “I’m hardly the problem!”
And as she sped-walk through the sliding doors, child in tow, all I could think was: But what if you are?