How the Bagger Brightened My Day and Taught Me a Lesson


Going to the Supermarket

The other day I decided to drop by my neighborhood market to get some odds and ends and some food for my dear cat. After collecting what I needed, I made my way to the check out station. As I approached, I saw the cashier and the Bagger working in tandem to get the people through the line as quickly as possible. Both of them I knew for I visit this store maybe twice a week.

The Bagger is an African-American gentleman. A very hard-working gentleman who appears to be close to his mid-40’s. I also believe that he might be slightly disabled. This is because he barely speaks and when he does; he often stammers. However, he always says hello and seems to really love his job.

When I go through his line, our conversations are very polite and not very deep. In fact, I doubt we have ever gone beyond the obvious such as the crowd flow in the store or what the weather is like. But today it was different.

The Book

“Is that a band or something?”

I looked down at my shirt and was kind of startled that he would notice my Flogging Molly shirt.

“Yes, it is a band. A rock band.”

I struggled to think of a way to describe the music to a man who was African-American and in his 40’s. I was smiling because the situation had completely threw me off.

“They are a good band”, I said.

He looked at me for a minute and then leaned into say something in a low stammer.

“Do you know of L-7?”

I was now really thrown off!

I said of course!

“They are good” he said with a big grin and then moved on to the next station to bag the growing line of fruits, chicken, and canned goods.

And the Cover

When I sat in my car, I had to laugh to myself. I had lost of sight of one importance of this world that is often overlooked by most of us. That is the reality that we are for the most part complex creatures with varying likes and life experiences. So just as I view myself as a complex person with a varying degree of values and likes; that others function in almost the same way.

So the Bagger who I viewed as being an older man who did not share anything in common with me will soon be a person I can chit-chat about music with.  Who knows what other commonalities we may share?


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