I have had a long and busy and very productive week. I've worked days where I went to work in the dark and came home in the dark. Yesterday I was sitting at my desk at 6:45 AM and driving out after night has fallen. When we got home, I simply wanted to go out for a few minutes just to feel the fresh air on my skin and to relax and have a cup of tea in the local mall. We were worried about getting space, it being Black Friday (why we imported that American tradition, I don't know) and all.
But there was space. I was exhausted from the day so I asked Joe if he'd go and get me my green tea and he agreed. I saw that the line up was long and started to just people watch and otherwise entertain myself. The table I was at had this sign saying that it belonged to the coffee shop and was reserved for customers of the coffee shop. We figured even though we weren't buying coffee, we're still customers.
I didn't see him coming. I was almost dozing - as I said, I was tired. I notice him when he's standing over me. He says, "This is for customers." I say, I am a customer. He looks, and makes it obvious that he's looking, "I don't see any coffee." I said, getting a little pissed now both at the intrusion and at the type of intrusion, can't I just go our for a fucking tea, "it's coming."
He changes tack, "You were almost asleep here,' it's an accusation. "I'm tired," I said, not yet realizing that that's exactly why this has gone on so long, if I'd been more alert this would have gone differently. And probably with a lot more grace. He said, "Why would you be tired? Now me, I work and pay taxes so people like you can spend my tax dollars in places like this."
It was out of my mouth faster than I could stop it. I don't usually swear in situations like this, but I just said, "Oh fuck off, you're nothing but a bigot. You think you fucking know what my day was and where my money comes from? Really, are you a fucking psychic? I don't have to justify myself to small minded pricks like you. I'm buying tea with money I made and my taxes are probably putting your fucking brats through school. Now piss off."
Joe arrives with two teas in his hands. This man is frozen to the spot. I now notice he's wearing an expensive business suit, he looks like an executive that is spoken too in only deferential terms. Joe looks from him to me. I said to Joe, "Ignore him, he's just a bigot with a mind barely big enough to fit the word 'prejudice' in it."
He turned on a very expensive heel and headed out the door. He didn't stop for coffee as I think he had planned.
Ah, poor dear.
I need to admit something. Though I never advocate this way. I think that swearing at someone is NOT an effective way to engage someone or to encourage change. But, if I told the truth. A little part of me, well maybe more than a little, enjoyed that.