Thursday, April 30, 2015



My friend Paul Corey was doing some routine shopping the other day and found that he had bought a nice story in the process.
Paul is a professor of stats but he's much more interesting than that sounds, a gifted teacher who is easy with people even when he suspects them of being infected with BS.
So he was shopping, on orders from his wife Mary, who has adjusted to his ways. He was in Bruno's, that fancy supermarket with the fancier prices (the one on Dundas near Royal York) when he found the store's electronics had crashed so he couldn't use his credit card.
He discovered this in the middle of kidding a young woman behind him who had switched to his line only to be stalled too.  She replied the credit machine at the other checkout was out of order too.
He confessed to one and all that he didn't know what to do with his groceries which totalled around $62 in cost because "my wife hasn't given me my allowance yet." (There is a possibility he wasn't kidding because Paul has been known to become exuberant on purchases especially when it is the discovery of a great new wine.)
Then the young woman said she would loan him the money and he could mail repayment to her. She had nice eyes to go with that kindness, Paul remembers. He said he lived nearby and it turned out she did too.
Paul then fished out his wallet and found to his surprise that he actually had $50 and some change. He handed it to the cashier who told him not to worry about the rest because he could pay  the next time he was in.
Wow! Doesn't that restore your faith in good old T.O! No wonder this big cold city is now up there in the surveys as the greatest place to live.
Now cynics might argue that this did take place in the pleasant paunch of Etobicoke, the best of suburbia in the GTA. And Bruno's may be known for its great selections in fine food but also for its helpful staff at the four locations. Paul and Mary are regular shoppers, because as great entertainers they are used to buying gourmet goodies for expansive dinner parties. So Paul may be a familiar face.
But to hell with rationalizations.
I think it was a generous moment on a quiet Thursday because of a trusting lady with nice eyes - and we men are accused of always looking somewhere else - and a cashier, Daisy,  who should be promoted or at least given a bonus for her astute judgment of some old fart from U of T.
Bruno's saved me with a delicious turkey and all the fixings one Christmas when Mary and I were both limping around  but I really am a Costco fan, especially for the meats.  I have found courteous service there when I have glitches but no Costco clerk has ever offered to let me pay some of the bill the next time I'm in.
What fine service to go with fine food!

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