Why The Syrup Isn't Free

Why The Syrup Isn't Free
photo credit: Gooey via photopin (license)

Cheapskate Charlie comes in every morning.  This guy never buys a goddamn thing, but he always needs something.

Today he shows up with a packet of oatmeal from home.

It's not so much what he "brings" in his lunchbox that bothers Chatty Cathy ringing at the register.  It's what he conveniently forgets that pisses her off on the reg.

Because he doesn't "forget" things - he believes he is entitled to the things.

Yes - Cheapskate Charlie has major sense of entitlement issues.

He struts in, helps himself to a 12-ounce foam cup, 10 ounces of hot water, a spoon, ten packets of sugar, and enough napkins to share at a picnic next weekend.

Cheapskate Charlie stirs his porridge as he heads to the break-room tables.  Chatty C attempts to make eye contact and suggest he "have a great day", but her sarcasm is lost on this clown.  He looks down and heads on out.

Charlie puts the concoction down and returns in a huff.  Apparently, now he's in the mood to talk.

"Hey, you got syrup?"

"Sure Charlie, we have packets in the office"

"Give me two"

Unfortunately for Cheapskate Charlie, it's not Chatty Cathy's first time at the rodeo.

Cathy grabs two syrup packets from the office and asks Know-it-all Nancy how much she should charge for two packets of syrup hold the pancakes.

Nancy drops the bomb heard round the break room.  "50 cents".

"50 cents?!?" Charlie bellows, "that's kinda steep, no?"

Oh, Cheapskate Charlie - not steep enough.  Not.Steep.Enough.

"Each".  Cathy confirms.  She punches a few keys on the register, looks at Charlie, smiles and says, "1 dollar, please."

This revelation confuses Charlie.  He begins to sputter about how "ree-dick-a-lus" it is that he has to spring for two packets of syrup.

"Fine, I'll just take one."

Cathy is determined.  She punches a few more keys.  "50 cents."

Charlie continues to play the "ree-dick-a-lus" card.

Cathy calls for a manager.

Which is when my day begins to head down the shitter.

Cheapskate Charlie tells me his tale of woe.

"50 cents for a lousy packet of syrup?!  You guys act like this is a restaurant!"

I try my best to explain.

"Well, Charlie, it kind of is."

Charlie reaches in his empty pockets and tells me he'll be right back.  He's got to borrow some money now.

He returns, tosses three dimes, two nickels and eight pennies across the counter while he nabs two pennies out of the take-a-penny-leave-a-penny soufflé cup next to the register.  All the while continuing to mumble about how "ree-dick-a-lus" the charge for syrup is.

I put the money in the drawer, hand the jagbag his receipt and offer him my two cents.

"You want to know what I think is ridiculous, Charlie?"

He doesn't appear to care...but today is Charlie's lucky day. I'm throwing in some advice for free.

"What is "ree-dick-a-lus" is that you think you can come in here with a packet of oatmeal from home and help yourself to a cup, hot water, ten packets of sugar, a spoon to stir it all up and enough napkins to wipe up a toxic spill and expect me to throw in two packets of syrup for nothing.  That's what I kinda  think is "re-dick-a-lus".

Charlie is completely dumbfounded.

He grabs his packet and leaves.

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