When those doors slammed shut a year ago, I was fortunate to have a lovely cellmate. We were in a prison of peace, love, and understanding. (Mostly.) Funny how refreshingly interesting a spouse of 45 years can be when you’re doing nothing but time together. I hope you were as fortunate.
Sprung at last, I sprightly approached the restaurant door.
No masks. No service.
Before COVID that door displayed a different sign: No shirt. No shoes. No service. I often wondered why there was no requirement for pants. Would I be served with no pants on?
Anyway, I didn’t mind the mask requirement. After all, the CDC was waffling. And, besides, once seated we were allowed to unmask.
We were chatting about the pandemic and the economy when suddenly our server (masked but unmuted) went on a spitting rant. (Thank God for her mask!)
“Our country is in big trouble. We’re headed for disaster.”
What do you mean? I asked.
“We’re running out of gas, cars are lined up for miles, nobody wants to work anymore, everybody wants to sit at home and get paid by the government. ‘Help Wanted’ signs are everywhere but there’s no help to be had.”
She took a breath.
Well, I think most people would like to work if the conditions and wages were right.
“I doubt it.”
I paid my check and left a 100 percent tip. (These are still stressful times for restaurant servers.)
I walked down the street to the coffee shop. (You can’t go in, so orders are taken and served through an open window.)
How’s it going? I asked the proprietor.
“Terrible,” he said. “I’m shorthanded and can’t get anyone to work. They’d rather stay home and collect unemployment insurance.” (That’s the shortened, sanitized version.)
Well, I think most people would like to work if the conditions and wages were right?
“I doubt it. What would you like?”
I was wondering if you’d mind posting this flyer on your front door window.
I gingerly handed him my “Book Launch & Signing” flyer.
He took one look and said, “Cool. I will.”
And he did—by himself.
What a nice guy with a very cool business!
He deserves a hand.
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For information on my new book, 80 Dispatches from the Devil’s Domain, click here and scroll down.
See Paula’s photo “Redbud Sunset” on the home page. Posted May 9.