Thursday, May 31, 2007


Old people can be either the greatest or the worst people in the world. Working retail, I normally encounter the latter. Today, however, a couple came in that will go down as two of my all time favorite customers. Neither could have been a day under 80. I asked if I could help them find something. The wife said, "Yes, this joker wants some kind of book that will help him solve this silly game of his." I asked which game and the gentleman replied "Rubik's Cube."

They both stood before me with the most innocent, childlike faces, and the corners of my lips couldn't help but slowly elevate to the sky. I haven't smiled like that at work in ages.

I looked some stuff up for them, and there was absolutely nothing we could get. I told them there were a few that are now out of print, and there is one coming out later this year. The lady leaned forward and whispered jokingly, "We may not be here that long!"

We had a nice conversation for what probably amounted to less than a couple of minutes. I told them about the scene in The Pursuit of Happyness where Will Smith solved the Rubik's Cube so quickly, and the elderly gentleman told me he used to be able to do that. The lady said they don't go to the "picture shows" much anymore, but their daughter did have one of those new things that you play movies on, DVD's.

They made my day, on a day that needed to be made. I've been thinking about what a terrible old person I will probably become. This damn knee has been bothering me again, and all I can do is complain. As far as "trials and tribulations" are concerned, I've seen very little of what can pass as hardship. Yet at work I can hardly go through a day without moaning and groaning. Most people know me as a calm, genial person, but as the years pass by that seems to fade away.

Maybe I should go purchase a Rubik's Cube.


amydrake10 said...

Craig-Thanks for the good words. I often feel like I see the worst of everyone too (is that the curse of retail?) so it's nice to know some stories end well.

Katy said...

Oh, man. I will be such an old crank one of these days. In some ways, I already am. Thanks for the story!

Brooke H said...

two of my favorite people in waco are in their late 70's. he is retired from the military and she used to be a school librarian. because of military connections, they can get really cheap plane rides and lodging all over the world. and they do. sometimes its a whim. everytime they just go with the flow and see what they can see. and the stories they tell...well, they're just fantastic. a favorite of mine is when they explored the western coast of the US in a van that they remodeled into an RV with a mattress in the back...
i hope that i'm like that someday.
i don't think i have near the adventure in me that they do.
it's good to know these kinds of people, i agree!

Neil Young said...

Old man take a look at my life
I'm a lot like you