“Yes, we’re in Pennsylvania, but it might as well be Guatemala”

I hate it when people talk about the heat.

Joe Blow – Wow Josh, can you believe this heat?

Me – Really, I hadn’t noticed.

Joe Blow – Yeah, apparently it’s in the 90’s.

Me – No effing way?!?!

Yes, Christ…It’s hot. It’s Pennsylvania in July. It gets hot here folks. Blame it on global warming if you must, just spare me the debate about where the warming is coming from. I feel strongly that fossil fuels have nothing to do with it and I accept the theory that the Earth’s climate transitions from hot-to-cold over and over again. We’re still exiting our last Ice Age which really didn’t occur that long ago in the gazillion year history of the earth.

My company has been doing a lot of work for a larger company and I recently had the misfortune of having a conversation about the recent heat wave in regard to rapid mold growth in an abandoned home. The silly rep asked me what I thought was causing the mold to grow. I responded with:

It’s hot and it’s been raining. Mold likes moisture and heat. Put them together and you have one hell of a science experiment

She was silly enough to say “it’s hot in Pennsylvania (they’re from NY)?”

Yes!! It might be Pennsylvania, but it’s more like Guatemala right now.”

I hate having to work for / with anybody but myself or my esteemed business partner. Sometimes I think we’re the only two people with half a brain between our ears.

Complete change of subject…

The local convenience store that I frequent has recently gone through a bit of employee turnover.  Obviously, talented people are not going to work the counter of the gas station forever and I feared the day would come that they would begin to leave, but I never imagined that 3 employees in particular would all leave at the same time.

What makes for a “great” clerk at the local refueling station?  It’s simple.  Fast service, quick-witted banter and a knack for mowing down a line of customers without skipping a beat.  I like to think that I knew what we had and didn’t take it for granted.  One of them joined the Marines, one chased a silly dream called College and the other just plain disappeared.

What we’re left with are two of the most uneducated, mindless, closest-fucking-thing-I’ve-seen-to-real-life-zombies that the world has to offer.  The one is courteous, but is amazingly slow.  Slow in the way that you have to try to be that slow because nobody can accidentally be that incredibly unmotivated.  Seriously, it gets thrown around way too often, but my GRANDMOTHER could run circles around this halfwit.  It shouldnt take more than 20 seconds to complete my transaction.  Even if I ask for a lottery ticket and a receipt.  It just shouldn’t.

More concerning is numskull #2.  I’ve with purpose omitted the name and location of the store I’m referring to, because I plan on quoting our conversation from earlier today EXACTLY and I live in a very small town.  He could singlehandedly make my life miserable should he come to find out exactly how much I despise his existence.

This happened at approx 3:30 this afternoon and it is important to note that although I was the only person in line, there were no less than 10 other customers in the store.

me – Hi.  Can I have a pack of Marlboro Ultra Lights?
him – Sure.  (He begins walking to the smokes rack and halfway there turns and says:
him – How are you today?
Me – Fine.  How are you?
him – Tired
me – Arent we all.  It’s the crux of the modern American life.
him – I have good reason to be tired

This is where I straight up fucked up and took the bait.  I should have sighed, sneezed, coughed, grunted, nodded my head.  Something.  Anything.

me – Why?
him – I decided to try to knock some time off of my “mile” time.
me – Audible sigh (too late!!)
him – I knocked 11 seconds off of it this morning.  It was really hard to do and it was really hot
me – congratulations
him – how fast can you run a mile
me – um, I don’t know.  I don’t run miles.  I drive them.  Usually takes about 60 seconds

He looked at me like I had just kicked his dog.  I mean he threw me a “you’re an asshole for not taking my running as serious as I do”.

I finally got my change and was on my way.  He continued to jaw at me while I walked out of the store.  What about?  I don’t know.  Somehow I think my name just went on his “to be killed” list.

***this dude is creepy.  His posture, his half smile, his delivery of the language, his everything.  It all screams scary, unbalanced, ready to snap***

My point is.  I don’t mid hearing about your day, but it shouldnt come at the cost of wasting mine.  Conversation should stop as soon as the transaction does and I/we should never be the prey of “one-uppers” in customer to clerk conversation.  Just tell me you did some running earlier and you’re spent.  Fine, great!  Hope you feel better.  Fuck him and his 11 seconds.  grrrrr.

**By the way…It turns out that the high in Guatemala tomorrow is only 75.  It’s 95 here.  Looks like I need a new 3rd world country to reference for heat.  Haiti, perhaps?  I’ll take suggestions.



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