Unraveling

I walk into Starbucks this morning. It’s Friday. I’m working a half day then going to a fun party. It is a good hair day and I’m wearing jeans with boots. These things equate to general happiness for me. I grab my coffee and go over to the coffee fixins station. There is a woman prepping her beverage like this…

  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.
  • Lick palm of hand from wrist to fingertips.
  • Add half and half.
  • Look at me to wonder why I am not joining her to fix my coffee.
  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.
  • Lick palm of hand from wrist to fingertips.
  • Add half and half.
  • Look at me to wonder why I am not joining her to fix my coffee.
  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.
  • Lick palm of hand from wrist to fingertips.
  • Add half and half.
  • Look at me to wonder why I am not joining her to fix my coffee.
  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.
  • Lick palm of hand from wrist to fingertips.
  • Add half and half.
  • Look at me to wonder why I am not joining her to fix my coffee.
  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.
  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.
  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.
  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.
  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.
  • Add one sugar.
  • Stir.
  • Sip.

I begin to unravel at the first lick of her palm. My breathing goes shallow. I can’t move forward. I glitch the system by my refusal to prep my coffee in the proper order as I am waiting for her to leave. No one else progresses either, understanding there is a breakdown in the system and not knowing what it is. There are looks of confusion, but absolute silence. Everyone… everything… even time freezes…. until she goes, completely unaware that she has, for a moment, crippled me.

I use a napkin to remove everything she has touched, instructing staff to sanitize said items. My heart is racing. I’m enraged.

Why?

Because I’m not sure who is crazier. She or I.

2 thoughts on “Unraveling

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