21. I don’t have to say much

“What drinks do you have?” a customer asked recently.

I recited the drinks list, skipping over the two fountain drinks we were out of.

“OK, I’ll have a (drink we were out of).”

“We’re out of that one at the moment.”

“OK, I’ll have (the other drink we were out of).”

“We’re out of that one, too, I’m afraid; that’s why I didn’t list it.” And after the customer hesitated a moment, I gave him the list again.

The look he had on his face when he got to the window… imagine the kind of exaggerated insulted expression you might see on an old sitcom. Now imagine someone still having that expression thirty seconds after the “offense” happened and holding it for twenty or thirty more seconds to make sure I noticed how insulted he was. And to complete the picture, imagine that the customer giving me this Mrs. Slocombe impression is a grown man with a full beard who’s dressed like a roofer.

This shows, as if I needed any more evidence, that thin-skinned entitlement knows no demographic boundaries.

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