"Holy sh*t! I haven't seen you in forever!"
Yes. That's the greeting I received upon stepping from behind a Monster energy drink cooler and a towering pyramid of Busch cases to approach the soda fountain for my 44 oz. Diet Coke. Let the record show that it was not followed by outstretched arms, nor a cordial smile. More like a controlled grimace.
I knew the exclaimer immediately. First AND last name. Even though it's been five years since he was in my class. That would put him at around 22 years of age. An age at which most people would realize that swearing in a place of business where you have just been hired is kind of an unwritten deal-breaker. Then again, most people adhere to social mores and do not have a FTW attitude.
The purveyor of my free refills was assisting Potty Mouth in wiping down the soda fountain and stocking the cups. He greeted me politely, as usual. Potty Mouth acted like he had gotten away with something. Like I have never heard the word sh*t before. Like I would say something to him about it. Like I gave a rat's posterior what he had to say. Like I had to be polite to him and cajole him into behaving in a socially acceptable manner so he would stop his childish attention-seeking behavior.
I spoke to Mr. Nice Guy and drew a draught of my beloved caffeinated beverage, then proceeded to the counter. What Potty Mouth was slow to realize was that, like ticket-scalper and self-proclaimed ladies' man Vic Damone in Fast Times at Ridgemont High, I had adopted the attitude that I don't care whether he comes, stays, lays, or prays. We are no longer forced inhabitants of the same small world. He is of no more significance to me than the puddle of fluid that is a constant fixture under the Monster cooler. An item of which I am wary, and tend to avoid, lest an unpleasant interaction result.
Such is life in the post-public-school world. Burned bridges do not reconstruct themselves. And drivers rarely give them a second thought as they go about their business using an alternate route.