Since my son is obsessed with MP3 players, I stopped at Best Buy to humor him. I planted the three other kids in front of the wall of TVs and then assisted (ha! I know nothing about MP3 players) him in his search. When his allotted fifteen minutes was up, I informed the three stupefied kids that it was time to go and then marched to the front of the store to await them there. But they didn’t come.
As I stood there tapping my foot and plotting evil consequences for the disobedient twits, I observed from the corner of my hooded eyes a salesman staring at me. He glanced in my direction several times and then, rubbing his hands together eagerly, he bounced over to me.
“May I help you, ma’am?”
“No thanks, I’m fine.” I said, with a careless wave of my hand.
“Are you sure there’s nothing I can do? Because that’s what we’re here for, you know. To see that you get what you’re looking for. We want you to find whatever it is you need, no matter what. So if there’s anything I can do for you, please just say so and—”
Alright, oh geyser of helpfulness, I thought. If you REALLY want to help me:
“Can you please get my children for me?”
“Now that I can not do, I’m afraid,” he chuckled, deftly dodging my challenge. “But! Anything else now, just say the word. That’s what I’m here for, you know…”
While making yet another batch of roasted tomato sauce, I received a call from a telemarketer who wanted to speak with my husband.
“He’s not here. May I take a message?”
“I’d like to speak with your husband, ma’am.”
“He’s not here,” I repeated wearily.
“Ma’am? I’m having trouble hearing you. Can I speak to your husband, please?”
I changed tactics. “May I ask whose calling?”
“I’m sorry, ma’am,” he bellowed cheerfully. “But it’s really hard to understand you! It sounds like you’re under water!”
“Yeah, that’s because,” oh what the heck, I thought to myself, just say it, “I’M A MERMAID!”
“Alright ma’am,” he yelled, “I’m going to hang up now! Bye-bye!”