Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Absurdity of it All - Slow People

A while back (as in 2008) I wrote about something I like to call the Absurdity of It All.  Essentially it  means that in any given situation in my life something annoying will happen. It happens all the time. My wife and I have grown used to it and  now laugh whenever it happens...let me give you an example.

Slow People.

I'm talking about people who are physically slow.  For some strange reason I am always stuck behind that person.  The person driving 45 on the interstate.  The person paying with exact pennies. The person who is paying for groceries with a check. (do people still use those?)

No matter where I go I get behind slow people. It usually happens when I'm in a hurry.  For example.

I want to grab a bite to eat for lunch but I'm in a hurry so I head to Chick-Fil-A.  At any of the Chick-Fil-A's around my house, lunch time means loooong drive through lines. Seeing the line I think, it'll be faster if I go inside.  Before I pull into the parking space I make a note of the last car in the drive through so I can compare which method is really faster. It's a green Ford Explorer. I got you Ford Explorer, I got you.

Inside there is a sea of people. The people at the registers keep the lines moving quickly so that you don't have to wait too long. It's my kind of place! I'm strategically move to the shortest line. I glance out the window to see where the Ford Explorer is.   Not even to the corner of the building yet. I'm so going to win this. 

Here's a quick tip for you guys. The shortest line is not always the fastest. You have to look at a number of things in order to gauge how long it's going to take you to get your food. What is the make-up of your line? Is it made up of hungry looking people or people who could put off lunch all together to ask the cashier every intimate detail of their lives? 

Is your cashier being trained? You can usually note this if they keep leaning over and asking someone where the Coke Zero button is. Also if the apologize profusely. If you have a trainee cashier, you can add at least 5 minutes to your wait. 

None of those were the case on this day. Ford Explorer didn't have a chance. Until....

Here's the one that got me that day. .Are the people in front of you in line looking at the menu while they wait?  My line was moving great until the person in front of me. She was a sweet little old lady. But she didn't even think of what she wanted before she got to the register. She got to the register and began looking over every single item. And she asked questions.

Does the number one come with fries?  
Are your chickens raised free range?
How many lemons are in each gallon of fresh squeezed lemonade?
What is the ratio of honey to mustard in your honey mustard sauce?

On and on and on.  With each question I lose a bit of my sanity.  I glance out of the window. A red Subaru Forrester...whew, there is still time left. 

Then comes the clincher. The special order. 

I would like a number 1, except I want the bun only buttered on half of it. Can you toast just the bottom portion?  I would like no pickles, but I would like a piece of cheese. I also would like half lemonade and half tea. Of the lemonade part I want half of it diet. Of the tea part, I want half of it sweet. I would like the ice to fill up roughly 67% of the cup.  I would like all of my fries to be in the shape of Abraham Lincolns beard....(what?) I think that will be it. 

Behind her I'm going crazy. Not only has every other line gotten down to one person left, but they have also served twice as many people as my line. I feel like I'm in some sort of Twilight Zone episode. This can't be happening. I came inside. I got in the shortest line. It was moving quickly....but TIME HAS STOPPED!

As the lady is paying with a change purse full of nickels I let my gaze drift to the window. There I see a Green Ford Explorer. It's driver is eating a waffle fry and laughing with glee. I stand in line and start to cry.  Just then the little old lady sees me and says, "I know dear, they are so slow here."

Ok so I might have exaggerated a little but I run into slow people everywhere!  Do you? Drop a story in the comments section below and share the absurdity of being behind slow people!



  1. This happens to me all the time (minus the beard fries)at the grocery store when I'm trying to pick the quickest way to get me (and my groceries) through security and on board the plane...

  2. This is making me laugh so hard because I am that slow person! Is it my fault that I always have exact change in pennies and I like my fries beard shaped?