the following was written in about ten minutes time using the twenty words that are marked as node links. The idea came from and was a pretty cool writing exercise. Be gentle.

"All Aboard The Express!" was the commercial slogan for the new Supermarket with a capital S. Didn't feel very much of an express as I stood there in a long line at the checkout counter. So much for truth in advertising. The commercial continued to guarantee everyone would feel a visit to "Shop Satisfied" would be a "Voyage of Adventure and Discovery!" Who came up with this stuff, I wondered. It looked more like a pregnant warehouse on the outside, but on the inside there was pretty much everything one could want.

I stood there in line with my shopping cart filled with all my groceries. Raw spinach for salads, bread and mustard for sandwiches, some new steak knives, quantities of potassium rich bananas since my back had been feeling sore lately, and a bottle of liquid detergent. Unfortunately, ahead of me in line was a Mommie Dearest clone who looked like she'd recently been embalmed but was not intelligent enough to accept the cold hard fact that she was dead. She argued with the cashier at every turn. She accused the store of raising prices again. Something that surprised me since the store had just opened a few days before. She demanded to know when the freight trucks were due in next because they were out of stock on something or other and she needed to know immediately when they'd be in. Every word that came out of this mouth rang of misdirection to me; like she was committing an embroidery of the truth, and purposefully putting on a show for either her own benefit or someone that couldn't be seen. Like the woman was paranoid she was being watched and actively putting on a display to prove she was not phased by it, and her paranoia was contagious.

The cashier's response was priceless. She just stared at the old crone with her name tag on at a slight angle and her spiked multicolored hair and eyes that sparkled with mischief, and when the old bat demanded to see a manager, the cashier stood there like a stone gargoyle facing a rainstorm. "Ma'am I've been instructed not to do that," came the cashier's mousy reply.

"How dare you? Have you any idea who I am?"

"Mrs. Gilbert Magnus. We all been told to ignore you, ma'am," the cashier was fighting a smile. I wasn't fighting mine.

"This is an outrage! I swear I'm going to write my congressman!"

Then the cashier winked at her, "Right to free speech. First amendment. Wunnerful thang ain't it? You're holding up the line ma'am you got a credit card that works or should I call security?"

Me and the ten other people waiting in line applauded the cashier, as a gentleman in a nondescript suit with a name tag on straight seemed to appear out of nowhere and escorted the old lady away. Sometimes it pays to be sarcastic.

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