Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Thunder and Lightning

His rudeness was monumental. It was harsher, coarser, and more grating than a bastard rasp. His tongue was as sharp as a freshly stropped straight razor. The worst of his special talent appeared when he was driving his car. When the term was coined for “road rage,” he was the poster boy. The fact that he was driving an old clunker, a 1962 Chrysler didn’t boost his feelings of well being.  It was little more than patches of rust held together by putty and paint. The engine just turned over 200,000 miles and had been rebuilt twice.
His vile attitude cost several well paying jobs. He now flipped burgers in a small diner. His work station was the narrow kitchen, hovering over a hot grill. The heat did little to mellow his attitude. He worked alone, other than a mute dishwasher. The deaf man was the only person who could stand to be in the same room as him. He was a great cook and the smallest complaint felt like an unpardonable insult to him.
“I need another burger,” the waitress called. “I got a customer who said she found a hair in her burger and that it wasn’t seasoned enough.”
The hurled spatula barely missed the waitress as she ducked. A string of curses filled the kitchen. He ripped off his apron and stomped on it. The swinging door flew open with a loud bang, almost popping off its hinges. Dishes stacked on nearby shelves rattled.
The waitress cringed behind the counter, holding her breath and waiting for the obvious and inevitable confrontation.
The frail, gray haired lady sat with her back turned toward the approaching storm. Her head was bent over as though she was saying grace.
The thundercloud hovered over her, then rumbled, “What do you mean, coming in here and….”
A withered face looked up at him with tender eyes.
The lightning bolt fizzled, then went out. “Hi, Mom. What can I do for you?”


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