A year or two ago I had the illustrious job of being a cashier at a movie chain that has now declared bankruptcy and closed down. There were several incidents leading up to my resignation, and this is one of those stories.

I had this manager at this movie chain whose name also happens to be John. We were known as the J-Team by the other employees and even some of the regular customers. John was a big man, and I don't mean in height–he was fat as fuck. He also had a full beard, like a mountain man, and long hair; basically he looked (and I'd imagine smelled) like Hurley on Lost. Overall he was a cool dude, and what was even better, he liked to screw with customers as much as I did.

Well one shift, this really old woman walked in about ten minutes before closing. Since I was still in high school and had to get up five hours later to get to class, I was kind of pissed. She was walking slow and just being old in general. She looked like she had already died, like she was a Romero creation. She had no clue where she was going, just began aimlessly walked through the aisles. Twenty minutes later we were officially closed, but our store had a policy of not kicking people out until they had made a selection. The store was losing money at that point, yet they still wanted that four dollars at all costs. My manager slowly shuffled over to me with a smirk on his face, and I knew something was turning underneath all of that face fat. I became excited, because this was one of the most diabolic men I have ever met when it came to fucking with the general public.

He hadn't even told me the idea yet, and I was playing through all the ways we could ruin this old lady's day. Hell, she shouldn't have even been up at one in the morning.  Anger grew in my heart as I watched her squint at the back of every goddamn movie box in the store, then set the movie down just when it looked like her interest was piqued.

Tearful scene
"If I never see you again, my darling, just know that I'll be laughing about this for years to come."
"What's playing through your head right now big man" I said with a scary calm voice.

"Let's recommend a movie for her. Something that will make sure she doesn't come back."

"You got any ideas?"

"This is your department. People trust your opinion when it comes to movies, and you don't look like you would put her in a van and rape her."

"Good point, I'll work my magic."

So I walked out from behind the counter, and I heard music. Of course it was the generic shitty music that plays in every store, you know, that pop music that 14-year-old girls decide they want to lose their virginity to, but it set the tone for me. I felt like I was doing something right. This was my moment of glory in the movie about my shitty job. For the first time in my life, The Black Eyed Peas didn't piss me off.

"Ma'am, do you need help with something?"

"Umm, I am looking for a comedy, what's funny?"

"I have the perfect movie for you."

Slowly, I led her to the drama section of the store. I wasn't sure what I was going to grab, but then it caught my eye. It was perfect. I couldn't see my facial expression at the time, but Big John told me it was one of the scariest faces he'd ever seen. Like I was about to murder my first person, and I was loving every second of the build-up. I tossed the movie on the counter, and started to ring her up at the register.

"You'll love this movie ma'am, it's pretty much the feel-good comedy of 1993. That's when it came out."

I could tell John was thinking of every movie released in 1993, and his face went blank for a second. I handed the old woman the movie, and followed her to the door, locking it behind her. I turned to John, smiling like a madman waiting for the bomb to explode.

"What did you give her…?"

"The feel-good comedy of 1993, Schindler's List."

I felt the space between us being sucked into his lungs, and then spit back at me and he let out a monstrous laugh. He would mutter "no fucking way" in between panting and laughing, and he actually had to go back into the office and take a seat.

"Dude, she's going to come back and complain, I don't know if I can save you from this one."

"Well let's just hope she complains to you, and not to anyone else."

"You might be fucked."

"Yeah, I'm okay with that."

The next day at 5 o'clock, she returned with the movie, and her eyes connected with mine. No old person has made me feel as awkward in my entire life. She attempted to slam the movie on the counter, but kind of let go of it and it plopped onto the counter.

"Young man, I want to see a manager. This… it was… bring out the manager."

I guess she thought she was conveying anger to me, but I just stood there, letting my laughter bottle up inside. Big John stumbled from the office, and invited her in.

"I thought it was a funny movie." That was my argument, and I left it at that.