Stupidity, Super Bowl Sunday and the ATM

My dear readers, today’s post is a blast from my blog past, as I am away at the Northern Trust Open Golf Tournament.  I leave you, once again, in hopes that you will be inspired to think:

What’s this world coming to? Are the stupers (short again for uncontainable stupid persons) finally taking over, like the monkeys did in Planet of the Apes? For a few minutes, I was certain stupidity had staged a successful coup.

I’d ventured out of my home and into the supermarket, figuring that the rain and the Super Bowl, would enable shopping to be stuper free. I was wrong.

My mission was to quickly buy four, 2.5-gallon size, water bottles. A simple enough task. The store had only four such bottles left. I heaved the rather bulky containers into my shopping cart. My sister then telephoned me, and I paused to chat.

As the conversation continued, I parked my cart at the foot of the water bottle aisle. I then walked over to the nearby ATM, mere steps away. Alas, I’d neglected to place a lock on the cart or load it with heavy metal objects. Maybe I should have tied a chain around one wheel and secured the other end to my ankle.

While at the ATM and on the phone, I glanced over my shoulder at my cart. It had disappeared. Barely a minute had passed. Irritated (after all, those were the last four bottles), I ended the call and left the machine. What I encountered was a trail of water bottles, haphazardly running along one side of the aisle. The very four bottles that had formerly been sitting in my cart.

A middle-aged woman pushing a cart approached me.

“Are you looking for the cart with the water bottles? Those four girls got rid of the bottles and took off with it,” she pointed to the end of the aisle.

I saw four indolent, scantily clad creatures in their late teens or so, just turning ’round the corner. I mention their clothing or lack thereof, because the temperature hovered around 48 degrees Fahrenheit. Perhaps the lack of warm attire had frozen what few remaining brain cells they had. Rather than walk fifteen feet to the cart corral, they’d confiscated one already in use.

Since I am a specialist in the psychology of stupidity, I considered attaching dynamite to the handle of their cart took the cartjacking in stride. But this tale gets worse for me before it gets better.

I suddenly had a terrible realization: I’d never removed the cash I’d requested from the ATM. Irritation while talking on the cell phone and simultaneously pushing buttons on the machine had distracted me to the tune of sixty dollars. I admit to hypocrisy in a weak moment, dear readers. Multi-tasking does not work when trying to have a meaningful conversation on the cell phone.

I raced back to the ATM. No $ in sight. I noticed a checker kept her head perpetually turned toward the machine. She knew something. I approached her.

“I don’t suppose some one turned in sixty dollars to you, found at the ATM?”

The checker nodded and barely opened the cash drawer. “Yes, some one did turn it in. A lady thought it was a malfunctioning machine. Here you go.”

It was a malfunction…in my head. Had I been paying proper attention, I would have maintained awareness. Instead, I focused on stupidity and became an amnesiac, leaving my money behind.

The fact that a person actually turned in the money instead of stuffing it in her wallet really warmed my formerly irritated heart. I was truly grateful. It made the stupers look very small indeed. Ever since the ATM mishap, I’ve been exceptionally prudent in fostering present moment awareness. It’s the only way to maintain sanity.

Great minds think.


5 Responses to “Stupidity, Super Bowl Sunday and the ATM”

  1. Elaine says:

    So much for multi-tasking huh? Actually the latest articles I’ve read on this topic said we humans are meant to be multi-tasking yet how can we not? I’m so happy that a good citizen turned in your money, I honestly wouldn’t have expected that either.

    Really like your line, “fostering present moment awareness” think we all need to have that on the palm of our hand and read 100 times a day.

  2. jingle says:

    U Rock in many ways,

    beautiful Post!

  3. Jenny says:

    Awwwwww! I’ll bet she hated to see you show up asking for the dough. But good on her for being so honest.

  4. Ferd says:

    Ahhh, you’re speaking my language here. I am a middle aged man, so multi tasking is merely a theory to my single track mind. I can no longer walk and chew bubble gum at the same time! I make it a habit to concentrate on the moment at hand, to pay attention, to not go into auto pilot mode. I have to, or otherwise I might have an accident and die!

    You chose to focus on the kindness of the anonymous angel who turned in your 60 bucks instead of the stuper trio. That’s the lesson I will carry away from this. Thank you!

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