Excerpt from: #ThisMyLife - MOTY

I bought a turtleneck on Amazon. When it arrived, felt like a child's, not an adult woman's size, and it was a crop top-not a super short crop but not meant to be tucked in, it's just long enough to sit at the waistline if you do not move your arms or move at all. I do not understand this fashion concept, I am covering things up for either vanity purposes or because I am cold-but whatever. Not in the description nor was it possible to discern from the photos of the product that it was not something to be tucked in. I checked the Amazon-generated recommendations of the size to buy based on, my previous purchases. Well, data tomata, it was a far cry from accurate. Very cool turtleneck, again, for a child or a very, VERY slim woman with no upper deck. 

I live with a no escaping this upper deck situation-it's not wild or out of control; it is just a thing we have to work around. Yes, there was a time I could not wait for them to arrive when I was like, 12. They did arrive, and it was fine for a few decades. Now I wake up in the morning feeling the heaviness on my ribs and think, "Really? You two? Again?" And I lug them with me to the bathroom as I reremember I am no longer 12. Don't anyone get excited here, they aren't that big nor do I really loathe them, I am just a drama queen. It's part of my affect. 

In Redlands, Amazon accepts most returns via Kohl's department store. A place I would never set foot in, not because of their products or anything; it's a store, and I am an introverted homebody. 

This was before the holidays, the store was busy-not my favorite either-with the frenzied energy of people rushing around. But a different countdown clock was ticking the days left on my return; I had to be there. I was carrying some other heavy stuff, supplies for our ghost kitty that kept showing up after she was gone, and I had canceled the subscription a couple times. My hands were full. 

As I approached the long line, I knew I could not hold the stuff and stand in line, so I announced to everyone, including the customer service rep, "I'm not cutting the line, y'all; I just need to put this heavy stuff down, is there somewhere I can--?" He, the customer service rep pointed to a spot next to him; I dumped them off. 

One lady from the line had a shopping basket and offered it as a potential holding place, but I was all set. I moved to the back of the line which progressively advances. 

The lady with the basket was now at the counter. It's not a HIPPA situation, everyone can hear the conversation between the rep and the woman. "I've never returned anything before; how do I do it?" The line bristles like she is ordering 50 plain hamburgers or the equivalent special order at a drive-through window. The rep asks her to open her app. "App?" He advises her she needs to step aside and download the Amazon app. A blank look falls over her. I volunteered to help. I looked at the guy behind me, "hold my place," like we're in grade school, but people in line are like a pack of wolves sometimes, you know? 

I step to the side of the front of the line at the desk to help her. I swipe to figure out how her phone works; they are not all the same, and I'm old, so it's not like I have the nimble brain of a teenager. I explain as I go, "We have to find the Amazon app in the app store...there it is." I click to download it. But, there is no wifi signal. Her phone is dead in the water for downloading. "Did you connect to the store Wifi?" Still with the blank look. 

A million years ago, I was the first point of contact for a software help desk. Was not hard to read this situation. "No? Ok, let's sign on to the store Wifi." Blank look continues as I click on the things to make the thing, (Wifi) make it possible to download the app and I do so. "Ok, you have to go through the app to begin the return process." Blank look continues. She has to sign in to the app. "You have to be signed in. Do you know your password?" She thinks she does. I hand her her phone and turn my back. Of course, no dice. "I'll have to call my husband." I motion that I'm going to step away to give her privacy while she acquires her password. All I hear is, "A woman is helping me." I am sure he was as uncomfortable at that point as I was. And we're in. 

I show her how to navigate through the return process, "find your recent deliveries, find the item you want to return, and click on it." I continue through the return options menu, we get to the end where you get the return QR code, and her return is not eligible for return at Kohl's; she needs to go to UPS. Of course she does. Everyone in line gasps because we've come so far together. 

The woman is crestfallen, I am crestfallen, I was inches from a clean getaway. "Ok, it's no big deal; just leave the app open, take this to the UPS store; they'll be able to help you." Blank look has never left her, "Where's the UPS store?" For a moment, I envisioned her following me as I drove to the UPS store to finish what I started because I can be tenacious that way-I started this; I'm going to finish it, damn it. That thought was followed by come on, lady, if you buy food anywhere in Redlands, a UPS store will be next to the grocery store-true story. 

Thank God, someone in line spoke up, "It's right next to Von's. You know, by Panera?" Still was not clicking for this lady, and my saved spot in line had made its way to the front; it was MY turn. I handed her off to get further explicit instructions from the next person whose patience had not worn out or might go so far as to let her follow them to the UPS store. 

I held up my turtleneck to the line behind me, the Barbie-sized swatch of fabric, and asked, "Does this look like a woman-sized shirt?" The crowd resounded, "NO." "Thank you, for the validation kind people; this wouldn't even cover my tatas." They laughed, as did I, but for different reasons. Yes, I know I can be  funny, haha. But, the fact that this observation just left my mouth-with zero filtering for public use is what had me laughing. That happens more and more these days. Apparently, my give-a-shit meter is broken or gone; not the one for helping people who need help but the one for caring what anyone thinks of me. I mean not enough to run around with my tatas hanging out of a crop top turtleneck but you get the idea. 

Anyway, I could not stop laughing as I drove home, anticipating telling my darling husband, who loves laughing with me at the silly interactions we have when we are out in the world. That woman had so many red lights surrounding that return transaction. I made that analogy as I had a growing uncanny greenlight situation ALL the way home. My husband was roaring at all of it and loved the synchronized green light travel as he used to commute so many hours of his work life, appreciates all greens like that. "You're gonna write that down, aren't you? It's just too funny." Maybe I will. This my life. XO M