Saved by a Donut Dude

Illustration by Norma Jean Zahner

Yesterday was my buddy Bobbo’s birthday.  I stopped at a donut shop to get him a fancy coffee and fritter.  A young attendant nervously approached the counter, eyes as glazed as the donuts shelved behind her.  She mumbled, “What can I get you?”

I asked if she had any fritters. 

“Whut?” she asked, finger twisting her hair, her other hand fumbling around the register.

“A fritter, preferably apple,” I replied.

It was clear she didn’t know a Boston Creme from a Long John, though I suspect she was remotely familiar with the latter.

“Jah-osh, do we have any …fritters?” she asked.

Josh walked over to the racks, pointed to the fritter tray, and said, “You mean these?”

“Oh, yuh, I guess so,” she replied.

Having established she was fritter-challenged.  I shifted from an elaborate latte order to a large coffee with cream/sugar on the side.

She went to the register to ring up the fritter and coffee.  After successive failures, the light dawned.  “Omigod!  I forgot to sign-in on this register!”


“Jah-osh!” she yelled.  “I’m totally not signed-in!”

Once again, Josh ran to the rescue, pressed a couple of keys, then rushed back to his drive-thru duties.

She punched another key then yelled, “Jah-osh, where is the fritter button-thingy?”

“Hit other,” he yelled.  “It’s a specialty item.”

“Rully?” she said, then hit other, studied it, shrugged her shoulders, and hit total.    

Luckily the register did most of the thinking for her.     

I told Bobbo the harrowing tale when I got to his house. He said, “You know my conspiracy theory, don’t you?  The one about 9/11?  While the terrorists were busy crashing into buildings, all our attention was directed to New York and D.C.  When we weren’t looking, other terrorists released vats of stupid into our drinking water, thus numbing and dumbing America.” 

That’s a chilling thought, but it does explain the incomprehensible array of donut diner ding-dongs and Capitol Hill ho-hos.

Josh, if you are reading this, you may be the last one in America who knows how to work stuff.  Make a beeline to Washington and start pushing buttons.  Please.