Monday, April 11, 2011


One of the funniest things happened the other day. While I sat in Starbucks, a person who frequents the same location approached me explaining that we had a mutual friend. I see this person there almost every day. He sits with a group that engages combative political discussions and other mindless prattle.

I abhor this crowd and always take the seat farthest from where they sit yelling and screaming at one another, pretending they understand the issue. In reality, they all repeat the words of the pundits they see on TV.

After the introduction, he said in rapid-fire sequence, “I’m writing a book. I don’t know how to use a computer very well; in fact, I stink at using computers. Our friend “name withheld” said you write books and use the computer all the time.”

My neck twisted into a tight spring-like coil as I sat motionless, wondering what he wanted.

He continued. “I have Open Office. Can you tell me how to use it?”

I thought for a second and said, “I use Microsoft Office. It has ribbon format that’s intuitive. All I do is sit there, look at the menus at the top, and figure it out. You can but a Home and Student version for about $120.00.”

All the time I’m thinking, if this person wanted to learn how to use a software program, he could stop engaging in the dialog with his entourage and go to the library to learn it. Why should I take my time from my activities when he could easily spend his time more wisely?

After a few minutes, he finally realized my skill set was in MS Office, and I couldn’t help him with Open Office.

Thankful he left to return to his argumentative circle, the tension left my neck. I resumed reading, thinking we’d have no other contact.

Unfortunately, the worst of all situations has arisen. Now when I enter the store he says, “Hi Rick.” He thinks we’re friends.

AAAARRRRGGGGHHH! The horror, oh the horror.
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