Tuesday, January 6, 2009

That Did Not Just Happen

I was in my car at the bank's drive-in teller line. I wrote my check and sent it hurtling through the tube to the inside. Then I zoned out. And then it happened.

A woman on foot charged up to the teller window and started knocking. No response. She knocked again, harder. A teller appeared and asked, "Can I help you?" over the intercom. "I need to borrow a pen," said Miz On Foot. The teller suggested she come inside to be helped. Miz On Foot babbled about not having an I.D. with her. Stunned by this nonsensical response, maybe, the teller opened the drawer and shot out the pen.

Miz On Foot began scribbling her check, hanging onto the drawer as a prop. The teller again suggested that she come into the bank. Miz On Foot was writing fast, repeating that she hadn't brought a pen, didn't have her I.D. but that the tellers all knew her "very well. All of them. They know me very well."

She was done with her check. Her stunning act of audacity, of jumping line outside a bank, at the drive-in teller line, was very nearly accomplished. I burst into a long hardy laugh. I was certain we were being "Punked" or "Candid Camera'ed." Hopefully someone would hand us $100 for not blowing our tops, or whatever all those reality shows do on television these days.

But oh no, Miz On Foot was simply pulling an age old game, a fast one. Or trying. My hooting laughter must have shaken the teller awake or into her authority. She told Miz On Foot to "take your place in line and someone will help you when it's your turn." On Foot looked surprised, feigned astonishment herself. And then walked slowly back to her car.

It was parked in the drive-in line, no. 3 behind me.

I laughed all the way home.

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