Stupid People Encounters #2

Yesterday, I went to the Amish market to do my shopping.  I was waiting in line at the produce stand when an older woman came up next to me.  She was being helped by one of the Amish girls.  The woman was a white lady in her 40s, and she was looking at two different displays of strawberries.

The Amish girl explained that they came from different farms.  One farm was in North Carolina and the other farm was local, in Pennsylvania.  The Pennsylvania strawberries were about fifty cents more expensive than the North Carolina strawberries.

The woman looked very confused at this simple explanation.  She said, “What’s the difference?”  The Amish girl explained again, very carefully.  “These are from North Carolina.  These are local organic from Pennsylvania.”  The woman looked at me and then shrugged.

“You said these are from North Carolina?”  She pointed to the North Carolina strawberries.  The Amish girl nodded.

The woman turned to me again and said, “That’s not in Mexico, is it?  Because I don’t want anything from Mexico.”

I didn’t say anything because I wanted to laugh.  Last time I checked North Carolina was not, nor has ever been, a part of Mexico.  I know that there are a small handful of people who do not know their 50 states, but North Carolina?  That’s one of the 13 original colonies.  How can you forget that one?  And then assume it’s somewhere in Mexico.

The Amish and Mennonite girls that work in the Dutch market have Pennsylvania Dutch accents, not Spanish accents.  They are all corn-fed white girls.  They don’t look Spanish in the slightest.  I am not sure how this woman came up with Mexico.  I tried to wrack my brain as to where she may have come up with Mexico.  I don’t even think the Amish market sells anything from any Spanish speaking country, unlike regular grocery stores that import produce from Chile or Mexico or someplace.  But whatever.

The Amish girl did not respond to the woman’s stupid question.  (Whatever they are being taught at home, it’s perfect because they never, ever get rude or roll their eyes or anything at the stupid comments I’ve heard made to them.)  The woman ended up getting the North Carolina strawberries because they were cheaper than the local organic ones.

Where do these people come from?

Stupid People Encounters #1

My office building has a cafeteria that serves food all day.  At breakfast you can get pastries, doughnuts, waffles, pancakes, omelets, coffee, etc.  They have stuff that is pre-made, a hot grill where you can get eggs made to order and packaged stuff.  They have large tureens with grits, cream of wheat and oatmeal.

Every morning I get eggs, toast and oatmeal.  Today I skipped the eggs because I brought my own.  I am trying to cut down how much money I spend upstairs.  I try not to get the oatmeal and toast but I can’t resist.  I get a small bowl of oatmeal, a pinch of sugar and a little bit of granola.  I get whole grain toast and four butters.  Two butters for my toast and two for my oatmeal.  I’ve been getting the same thing for the whole two years I’ve been working here.

The line is very long, and there’s a new lady opening up another register.  She’s not new, really, she just doesn’t usually work on the register.  When I go up to pay she says, “Oh, you can only have two butters.”

“Okay.”  I just looked at her.  I assume that I can only have two butters for free and that I will have to pay for the other two.  This is fine.  How much can butter be?  And anyway, who cares?  I want it no matter how much it costs.

She is staring me down.  “You can only have two.”

“That’s fine.”

“You got to put those back.”

“Why can’t I just pay for them?”

She looks at me like the thought never occurred to her that I should pay for it rather than put it back.

Then I said, “And anyway, I don’t get any condiments for my oatmeal?”

“No.  You get cheese with the oatmeal.”


Cheese?  Who the hell puts cheese in their oatmeal?  I know plenty of people who eat oatmeal but I’ve never met anybody who puts cheese in it.  I know people who like butter.  Some people prefer sugar.  Others put in granola, or bananas, even milk.  One guy I know puts syrup in his oatmeal, but cheese?

“Why would you put cheese in your oatmeal?”

“Cheese comes with the hot cereal.”

Presumably “hot cereal” means oatmeal, cream of wheat and grits.  Yes, cheese can go in grits.  But cheese does not go in oatmeal or cream of wheat.  Those hot cereals are sweet.  Grits can go either way.

“That’s just gross.  Cheese does not go in oatmeal, but whatever.  How much do I owe?”

“And anyway, I don’t even know what oatmeal is.”

I am dumbfounded.  Who the hell doesn’t know what oatmeal is?  Seriously.  I know plenty of people who do not like oatmeal.  I know people who call oatmeal by a different name.  I’ve never met anybody besides newborns who don’t know what oatmeal is.  That’s just bizarre.

If you had never heard of oatmeal then how did you come up with idea that cheese should go into it?  How are you a food service employee but yet you’ve never heard of oatmeal?  It is truly amazing the people they hire.  Most of the other employees are special, but even they are not as dumb as this woman.

I see stupid people.