I was putting my groceries into the back on my pickup and the couple in the car beside me arrived with theirs, which was only a small bag. I was on the starboard aft side of the bed and the couple spread out. He headed to the passenger side, she to the driver's side.
When she neared me she said, "Excuse me sir."
I replied in a charming voice, "Why, certainly, young lady." and her face lit up a bit and she smiled.
The couple was in their early 40s and I knew she liked being addressed as 'young lady' by the look on her face.
"What did you call my wife," demanded the husband.
"I called her 'young lady,'" I replied. "She is certainly younger than I am."
"Yeah, well I don't like it." he snapped.
I switched right over to my butler voice. "I see, sir. You are obviously one of those men that likes sleeping on the couch."
He flushed, the woman outright laughed. He started doing a slow burn.
She turned to her husband and said, "The man paid me a compliment and you want to fight about it. Get in the car!"
Then she noticed the 'Minister' sticker in the back window of my pickup.
"You're a minister?" she asked.
"Yes, I am," I replied.
"Where's your church?" she asked.
"I have just retired as a chaplain to Legion Etranger, the French Foreign Legion," I replied, simply. "Sixty years old is a little long in the tooth to be jumping out of airplanes, being deployed to every far flung remote outpost on the planet and breaking up bar fights in third world whorehouses."
Of course, it was an outright lie, but I knew I could get away with it as my life at sea has weathered me so it is obvious I didn't make my career in an air-conditioned office.
"Interesting. Thank you for your kindness," she said and got into the car.
As soon as the car door closed, the wife lit into him. It was not pleasant.She said something like not wanting to spend the afternoon bailing him out of jail or sitting in an emergency room as he got sewn up.
One thing was obvious, though. That jerk was sleeping on the couch for a while.
There is another side to this episode and it took place earlier.
I was going through a checkout and the woman ringing the register looked like she wasn't having a very good day. When I got to her I said, "Hiya, gorgeous! Where ya been all my life?" As she rang up my goods and garbage, I gave her a few cheerful pleasantries. She smiled.
I also noticed a man standing off to one side smiling as he heard me. As I left he followed me.
"Thank you for cheering my wife up," he said.
You can bet your ass HE ain't sleeping on the couch.
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