A man's reflection in a glass door

This man came into our store today

This man came into our store today. He spent $5,000. He pulled products off of the shelves for two hours: plates, strainers, martini glasses, cheese boards, forks. He said he wanted to have a party. He said his wife had kicked him out. I said, “Would you invite us?” and he said, “Yes.” I was only joking. He knew that.

When the man went to pay, all of his credit cards were declined. He left us $100 and his ID and said he’d come back to retrieve his things on Monday. We looked him up online. It turns out he’s the CEO of an insurance company.

We worked for 45 minutes after the man left, wrapping his things in tissue paper, filling bags filled with other bags, so nothing would break through. When we were done, I looked at all of those bags. 20 or more. I could barely reach my coat. I thought about how strange it was that all of those products had been made overseas and then flown here so this man could use them as a salve. Then I thought about all of the people out of work. Then I thought of a homeless man I know, who lives nearby in his car. He might have liked to have some of those bags.

The phrase “don’t bite the hand that feeds you” popped into my head. But what about the hand that feeds you scraps? 

A dog behind a translucent door

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One thought on “This man came into our store today

  1. It’s a sad commentary. The real 1 percent isn’t A bogey man but a rich man wanting more. CEO pay is crazy. His bonus would pay for several dozen to hundreds of workers yearly wages. The homes, cars, college others could have but for a guy who will work five to ten years and bleed off what others could make a difference with. His lawyer will get more money for a divorce then you might make in a year.

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