I study at my bagel shop most Sunday's, buying something to nibble on or sip every hour or so. Life unfolds at nearby tables, most of which I completely miss because I'm buried in what I'm doing. But snippets of conversation drift my way......
Young teenager girl and Dad having lunch together:
Teen: Oh you know how it is with mom, Dad. She hasn't changed since you lived with us. I said to her the other day, "You and Dad have very different senses of humor" and mom said, "Yeah, mine's funny."
Dad kind of laughs.
She's too young to understand the dig. He's wonderful. Never a negative comment and asks lots of questions requiring open-ended answers about what is going on in the daughter's life. Her new boyfriend: has she met his parents? He listens. Really listens. He's honestly interested in her young life. She's a lucky daughter. I wish I could tap him on the arm when his daughter isn't looking and tell him I think what a great Dad I think he is.
Two sisters and a friend, having coffee and talking about one of the sister's upcoming wedding:
Sister #1: Is Dad giving you away?
Sister #2: No, we think that's stupid. No one is "giving me away". He'll be there but he's a groomsman.
Sister #1: Ohmygod, do NOT make me walk with that man. I'm sorry but that is one thing I refuse to do as a bridesmaid. I will NOT walk with that man.
Sister #2: Don't worry, he's walking with his wife, she's a bridesmaid....
Moms having coffee and bagels, talking about kids that just went off to college:
Lady #1: I just opened up another account in both our names and keep an eye on it. When the balance drops down, I just put another hundred dollars or so in it for him. You know, it's no big deal and just easier that way.
Another lucky kid.
Professor and student:
Professor, comment directed at me as the two of them are getting ready to leave: You seem to be working wayyyy too hard on a beautiful Sunday afternoon.
Me, pulling my nose out of the PowerPoint I'm working on and looking at them for the first time: This is my idea of fun. So far they don't have a pill for it.
Nice people. They leave.
Time for me to leave, too. Warmed by the friendly conversation I take pity, looking around for the crabby guy in the green apron as I buy a loaf of bread to take home. I think I'll tell him I've had bad days too, I know what it's like and I really do hope he has a better day tomorrow. Can't find him. Next time I see him I'm sure he'll be allllllllll better.
Or maybe not. Wouldn't be surprised if he threw down his apron and walked to his car crying. The bagel business can do that to a person.