Highlights From Friday's Pill Counting Action.

I rolled out of bed already missing my dear friend Mr. Scotch, the empty glass on the nightstand being the only evidence of the comfort he had given me the night before. I've always thought of scotch as my guy friend and the elegant martini as a woman. I don't know why. Perhaps because martinis are far more likely to leave me with a headache. The apartment was dark, with a faint smell of secondhand smoke and the headphones in the other room still sending the sounds of  The Dead Kennedys into the air. It was comfortable, just the way I like it when I've barricaded myself in from the rest of the world. I dreaded what I was to do next.

I opened the blinds and saw a rainbow, which as my Judeo-Christian friends know is God's promise not to drown us all again. I wondered why he chose today to rub it in.

I walked through the front doors of work and saw the store's manager standing by the cash register, all alone. Cashier call-outs had left him the only employee in the place. He used to be a District Manager for another chain, and  as I watched him standing there so sad and lonely I marveled at how the mighty had fallen. He was ringing out a 12-pack of beer for a man who said last night's rain meant he wouldn't have to go to his job on the road crew today. He was planning on staying home to drink.

Why did I spend all those years in college again?

So I could give expert advice on people's perspective purchases. Like the lady with the bucket. She wanted my opinion on a goddamn bucket. So I gave it to her....the main advantage is that you can use one to carry water around without having to keep your hands constantly cupped. I shared an insider tip as well; make sure there are no holes in it. Being condescending without actually sounding condescending is just one of the skills a good college education can provide you.

Half an hour into the day the former District Manager turned lonely cashier called to ask if maybe I could let Supertech come to the front for a few minutes so he could go to the bathroom. Only those of you who have experienced the universal idiocy that is every District Manager, in every chain, everywhere, can fully appreciate how much joy I took in having Supertech take the next three phone calls, then mildly suggesting that maybe, when she got some time, she could slowly make her way to the front, perhaps straightening a shelf or two on her way up there.

About 10 o'clock Express Scripts' claim processing computer went down for about an hour. About 4 o'clock, when the problem had been fixed for about 5 hours, we got a message from corporate saying Express Scripts might be having problems. It came in right as I was reviewing a warning that Suboxone, a medicine used to ease the symptoms of narcotic withdrawal, should be used with caution in patients who are narcotic dependent. I miss the days when limits on communication technology meant we actually had to have something to say before communicating.

"I'm at Atlantic and Park Avenue." The man on the phone said. And since there isn't a street by either name in my town, I could only assume I was talking to the little man from Monopoly. I'm happy to report he sounds well for as old as he must be.

I asked the next customer how he was, and he replied "Old and crappy."I instantly had a new favorite customer. I answered the phone and the lady asked me how to spell "syndrome." In your face Firefox spell checker. Some people still appreciate the kind of personalized, hand crafted, spell checking that only I can provide.

The climax of the day though, was every retail workers nightmare. A lost child. It starts with the first request, unique in the accent that is placed on the last syllable. john-NIE? In any language it is understood that this is a mother trying to re-establish contact with her offspring. The woman had been waiting in line patiently behind her stroller, and now that it was time to pick up her prescription Johnny had dropped off her radar screen.

"Johnny? Where are you?" Silence fell over the pharmacy as everyone within earshot discreetly started scanning the aisles.

"JOHNNY......JOHHHNNNNYYYYYYY????"

It was a shade short of panic now. Johnny wouldn't get in trouble if he was somewhere he wasn't supposed to be. Mommy just wanted to find him. Now.

"JOOOOHHHNNNNNNNNYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!"

We have a drill for this kind of thing. Just as I picked up the phone to tell the people up front not to let anyone with a kid out the door, there was a soft, sleepy, "What?" from the stroller. The stroller that had been in front of Mommy the whole time. Mommy opened up the flap that covered the thing and there was Johnny wiping the nap's eye-snot away.

She was picking up Norco. Which is as surprising as the fact that God still hasn't gone back on his promise not to drown us all again.  It's supposed to rain again tomorrow. Hope springs eternal.
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Highlights From Friday's Pill Counting Action.
Highlights From Friday's Pill Counting Action.
Reviewed by malaria
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Rating : 4.5