(originally posted 10/12/2019)
“Do you want your receipt?” asked the young man behind the counter.
“No thanks” replied the older businessman.
“Are you sure?” the young man asked again.
“Yes. You can chuck it.”
There was a long pause, but instead of depositing the receipt into the trash as requested the young man hesitated, looked at the receipt and then looked at the businessman. Finally he asked “How are you going to remember what you bought?”
“I have this to remind me” the businessman said and lifted up his right hand, which held a bacon, cheese and egg bagel. His face had a ‘game, set, match’ look on it.
“What about when it’s gone?”
A look of irritation crossed the face of the businessman but before he could offer his rebuttal, which would have include a rather graphic and unpleasant third option as to where the receipt could end up residing, the young man behind the counter continued.
“Do you remember your prom?”
Not one to back away from a squabble the businessman took a moment to remember his prom. He only went to one; his senior year. For a moment he forgot all about the piping hot bacon, cheese and egg bagel clutched in his right hand and fumbled for pertinent particulars of that magical night.
“Do you remember the name of the girl you went with?” the young man inquired.
Ignoring the fact that he had no idea what the connection between his prom night and a bacon, cheese and egg bagel could possibly be the businessman played along.
“No” he said, “But I do remember distinctly that her dad sneezed when I was waiting for her to come downstairs. He sounded just like the blonde girl in a horror movie when she opens a closet to find her best friend hanging there with her throat slashed. I’ll never forget it.”
“But you did forget the name of the girl you took?” asked the young man again, careful not to sound in any way that he was gloating.
“The problem with the girl” the businessman plowed forward, eager to explain, “Was that her feet were too big. She was the only girl in high school who didn’t want bigger breasts but instead looked into a foot reduction.”
After he was done offering this explanation the businessman realized that it was still no reason not to remember the girl’s name. “I remember her dad’s name. His name was Chuck.”
The two men looked at each other.
The young man slowly extended the hand holding the receipt.
The businessman took it.