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Br'er Juan's Car

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The Promise of A Future
Wednesday, May 01, 2002   By: Br'er Juan

A trip to the supermarket reveals a grumpy old man, an accomodating store manager, and the truth of Br'er Juan's future, a future missing milk and honey.

Br'er Juan slowed his stride to the check-out counter and let the man go ahead of him.

The man had dressed himself in Petty blue shorts, a stained white T-shirt, black socks and black shoes. He'd abandoned the razor at least two days ago. He shuffled with the baby-sized steps and stiff back of age.

The man placed his purchases on the belt thing - a steak browned by too many days in the display case, the SALE sticker  glowing orange- and two bags of prepackaged salad.

"That's the two for one salad," announced the man in a wheezing voice.

"No sir, not that one," said the cashier.

"Oh yes, hell it is. I asked the guy over there and he said it was," pointing towards the produce section.

Br'er Juan sneaked back a step, shuddering in memory of his days as a retail clerk.

The store manager arrived to take charge. He used his key to clear the register, and he gave the old man a two-for-one price on the salad. He paged over the produce clerk as the old man smiled.

The cashier bagged the salad and too-brown steak, as the old man looked on suspiciously. He tiny stepped his way out to the parking lot.

As the cashier totaled Br'er Juan's purchase, he watched the produce clerk in conversation with the store manager. The clerk vigorously shook his head and clearly said he had not told the old man any such price.

Br'er Juan stumbled out into the parking lot thinking "There I go in all too few years. Having to pinch every penny. Hard to get along with."

A sliver flash. Almost run down by a speeding new BMW. Driven by the old man.

Br'er Juan stared after the car.  "But I probably won't have a new Beemer - I'll probably still be driving the car I have now."

According to the factory build sheet, Br'er Juan's car was made in Stuttgart on Halloween Day, 1979.


Tales and Humor  

(c)1968- today j.e. simmons or michael warren