Stepping up to the register is the first mistake.
You’re never ready to order
and you’re never ready to respond
to the trick questions the cashier lobs to you,
even though it goes just like you rehearsed.
They raised their hand lackadaisically,
and you hustled on stage for your cue.
Then, before your audience of two,
you forgot your lines.
It takes a moment
of dead stares, silence, and avoidant eyes
to realize you’re losing the crowd,
and the time comes to ad lib a new order.
“One cheeseburger, with grilled onions
and no pickles, please, I hate pickles.”
They smile, take your money, and pretend
not to notice that you forgot to order for your date.
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