I recently had to take my laptop for a check-up with the aptly named Geek Squad in my local Best Buy.
Walking in, laptop under my arm, I passed the official greeter stationed at a counter by the automatic doors. Simultaneously manifesting the symptoms of imminent suicide with those of extreme cheerfulness, he nodded at my computer with a smile and ushered me through with a despondent wave.
I strolled past the same counter less than a hour later, computer properly tweaked, to be bade farewell by another greeter who didn't seem to care in the least that I was exiting the store with a piece of equipment tucked under my arm.
Suspicious of all by nature, as far as I was concerned, the computer I carried could have been stolen.
After all, is it not possible that I was a thief? Is this not why there is someone stationed by the door pretending to be happy to see me when I enter and unctuously wishing me a "nice day" when I leave?
Never willing to give someone the benefit of the doubt and, therefore not worthy of receiving it myself, I asked the greeter why he didn't seem in the least bit concerned that I was leaving with stolen merchandise.
"Oh," he laughed, "you don't look like you'd steal anything!"
|The great Don Pardo|
Clearly this guy found me to fall in the category of bland middle age as opposed to exciting, mysterious potential thief. Was it the graying hair, the softened body angles, the sensible shoes? Does my appearance paint a picture of someone who is so harmless that she is incapable of slipping a "Don Pardo Reads the Phonebook" CD into the waistband of her mom jeans.
Does middle age neutralize us? I think not. Did Margaret Thatcher not make her mark in her middle years? Was Gold Meir not her most effective while graying and wrinkling? What about Madeline Albright? Hilary Clinton? Indira Gandhi?
The fact that I compare my likelihood to steal a laptop with these accomplished women of history, in itself not only catapults me from any potentially honorable accomplishments myself but should alarm you, dear reader (and family members) on many levels.
On that note, I am now about to return to Best Buy...my lap top's been acting up again and there's a copy of "Vanilla Ice Sings Rogers and Hammerstein" that I've been, er, meaning to "get."