Handsome is as handsome does. Or, in Mrs. Hillbilly Mom's case, breathtaking is as breathtaking does.
The staff at the gas station chicken store apparently sees me coming. They probably throw elbows and jockey for position in a rush to hide out near the chicken-fryer in the back room, taking their chances of being spattered with grease hotter than the surface of the sun, rather than wait on Mrs. HM. I can't imagine why. I always have correct change, to the penny, for my 44 oz Diet Coke. Unless I'm getting chicken, of course, which hasn't been in about two weeks from there, what with The Devil's fried chicken convenient on the weekly shopping days.
I can't help it that almost every clerk there has made a little (or LARGE error on my lottery tickets. An error which I have always corrected, all mistakes having been in favor of ME, which means I'm saving them money and an a$$-chewing. Except for the Woman Owner, of course. I don't think she'd chew her own a$$. But everybody else had better get some fake buttocks to strap on if I stop helping them out.
Speaking of the Woman Owner...a few days ago, I stepped up to the counter to make my transaction, and she said, "Somebody got your parking space, didn't they?"
"YES! The nerve of them! They took up ALL of my parking spaces!"
There was a dump truck off to the side, by the canal that separates the gas station chicken store from Farmer H's pharmacy, CeilingReds. AND that dump truck was hooked up to a trailer suitable for hauling a backhoe.
"My favorite space is the first one over here. Where it's flat. But that one is usually taken. And then my second favorite was around to the side, by the dumpster and air hose, but every time I came out, people were waiting for me to move to get air. In fact, I got air for myself only yesterday!"
"Yes! We have FREE air!"
I think Woman Owner noticed where I parked, because she was looking out the front window to watch the gas pumps, and saw that I had parked right next to HER SUV. I left plenty of room to fling open T-Hoe's door, though.
Anyhoo...today (Sunday) I parked over by the canal, because my number one favorite space was roped off with a wastebasket and orange crime tape, because apparently Woman Owner had put Man Owner to work filling in potholes with a bucket of cement again.
I had noticed something rolling around on the lot when I pulled in. As I walked across to the building, I could tell that it was a coffee cup. That's not good for business. You don't want your premises looking trashy. I was walking right by it. So I picked it up and tossed it in the trash receptacle between the pumps. I went on it, clutching my $60 winning ticket that I bought the day before (sorry for not breaking the news to you--I can only be bothered with the $100 winners lately).
The owners weren't working. It was the little Asian guy who gives me tips on certain scratcher tickets that have just had a winner, so I don't squander my easy-won money on them. I have questioned him at times on my total as well. I think we are at a draw. He's been right, and I've been right. Not a big deal. I just don't want to cheat anyone. That's bad Karma for winning.
This Guy has not been his usual outgoing self the last couple of times I was there. I don't think I've done anything to offend him. I don't try to be difficult. We used to joke around all the time about him selling OTHER PEOPLE the big winners. And about the soda being OUT of Diet Coke. But lately, we haven't been meshing.
I walked around the back of the aisle to the soda fountain.
The 44 oz cups were the kind with the fat flat bottom. Not the tapered bottom that fits in T-Hoe's cup holders. I reached gingerly to twist one out of the hole.
"Ah-ah-ah! I wouldn't do that! I'll get some in a minute. I haven't had time."
"I know better than to get one out of the box back there." It's a big cardboard box with new tubes of all sizes of the cups. "Last time, I opened it from the bottom! Sorry about that. I won't mess with them again."
"Oh, it's not that. A customer put THOSE in. We don't like to use them." This Guy finished up with his customer. He came back and pulled the fat flat-bottomed cups out. With difficulty. "And he broke some of them." I imagine Woman Owner knows to the tenth of a cent how much each cup costs, and when one is missing.
This Guy held out a tube of the good cups. "Here." I took one. Had to pry it loose with the help of his other hand holding back the one inside it. "Oh, and the soda will taste like bleach, because I cleaned the machine this morning."
"You know, I always think Dairy Queen Diet Coke tastes like Pine Sol. And McDonald's Diet Coke like it's been sitting four hours with ice in it already." I took my regular sip, to keep my magical elixir from seeping out the X in the lid. "Hey. It doesn't taste bad."
"Ha. I'm joking about the bleach."
Yes, This Guy and I had our groove back. I have a feeling he saw me pick up that cup and throw it away.