It was the week of Thanksgiving, and I was set on trying a new creamed corn recipe for the holiday. Having a large extended family I was going to need a lot of corn – 24 ears to be exact. I knew that the grocery stores would be too expensive for such a large quantity; so my husband and I headed towards a roadside vegetable stand. I was sure that their candy corn, as it’s called, would help me duplicate the dish I had so enjoyed at a New Orleans’ restaurant.
Off we went. We stopped at the first stand we came to, and I scouted out the market to see if they had what I needed. They did and at the right price, too, four ears for a dollar! My husband stayed in the car certain it would only take a moment to make my purchase.
I bagged my corn and took it to the man working the checkout counter. He looked a bit odd, but seemed friendly enough.
“Hi!” I smiled as I placed my corn on the table in front of him. “I have 24 ears of corn in the bags.”
He looked at me while figuring my total in his head, “That’ll be $21!”
“$21? The sign said that the corn is four ears for a dollar!”
“That’s right – $21.” He said with a toothless grin.
I knew he just wasn’t thinking, so I attempted to help him with his figuring. “The sign says four ears for a dollar – that’s eight ears for two dollars, twelve ears for three dollars…”
I thought he would have stopped me by this point, but it was obvious by the unbelieving smirk on his face that he still wasn’t getting it.
I continued, “sixteen ears for four dollars, twenty ears for five dollars and twenty-four ears for six dollars!”
“Naw! You’re tryin’ to cheat me!” was his reply.
I couldn’t believe it! Was he joking with me? Was there a hidden camera somewhere? He was serious and so convinced in his mind to the point that he wasn’t going to sell me the corn!
I asked, while looking around, “Is there anyone else that works here?”
Before he could answer me I saw a couple of men sitting at the far end of the stand. I walked up to them and asked if they worked there.
The owner replied, “Is he giving you a hard time, darlin’?”
“Well, he’s trying to sell me 24 ears of corn for $21.” I still couldn’t believe this was actually happening.
“Man, he hit his head yesterday and must’ve hurt himself worse than I thought. Come with me!”
I followed him as he approached the checkout counter. “Mac, I want you to sell this lady her corn for $6, ya hear?”
He took my corn from under the counter and still hesitated in taking my money. He kept staring suspiciously at me, and when his boss had walked away he said under his breath, “You must’ve really winked your eye at him!”
With that I took my bag of corn before he could grab it from me and quickly got in the car.
As I closed the door and took an exasperated breath, my husband said, “What took you so long?”
“You won’t believe it…”
NOTE: Life is filled with moments like these where we can choose to be angry and frustrated, or laugh! We have laughed over and over about this day; what could have caused an argument, ended up becoming one of our favorite stories to tell. What’s your favorite story to tell?
“(W)e can choose to be angry and frustrated, or laugh!” So true – but it took me over half my lifetime to figure it out. I don’t waste breath and heart space on regret but simply note it for those younger than me. There was a time when I would have been furious, enraged even, if I had been in that situation. I admire your response. I especially appreciate your wonder about a “Candid Camera” hidden somewhere. If we were to wonder that possibility in the bizarre or uncomfortable situations in life, I would guess our reactions would become “camera friendly”. Just a thought for my future consideration.
Sharon, how true! We are quick to act cordially when we think someone may be watching. Thing is…our families always are! Thanks for commenting!