A Cowboy’s Faith: Old must look young

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“You can’t buy this without proper identification.”

The now-seemingly-inexperienced checkout woman insisted that when items were spread on the counter.

Smiling, thinking the checker wearing fingerless knit roper gloves was jiving: “You can surely tell who’s an old man.”

Attitude became very serious demanding: “A driver’s license or other proof of identity is required.”

While one little bottle had a round tag: “ID will be checked,” it still seemed like a clerk’s prank.

“Purchases of this stuff have been made here before plus buying other things many times. Besides, despite wanting to be young again, old is obvious without a piece of paper verifying it.”

Loudspeaker came on loud as the now most aggravated waiter publicly announced: “The manager is needed immediately at checkout.”

No spoofing, a young fellow who really couldn’t have been of age came dashing to the cash register. “He doesn’t have any identification,” the woman pointed at the want-to-be customer.

With a certain intended power of authority, the young sprout declared emphatically, “This cannot be purchased without an ID.”

Things were also becoming more heated on the intended purchaser’s side of the dilemma: “Legal age is 18 isn’t it?”

Well what the heck, it isn’t worth the hassle and too lazy to go up the street to make purchases. But don’t give in without one more rebuttal: “It’s too cold to go outside, because this credit card is as good as the next.”

Anyway, driver’s license was presented, but the scowling clerk must have been bumfuzzled (that’s a word according to certain dictionaries). She kept turning the bottles over and over in apparent utter confusion, finally giving into processing the payment. Certain a mistake had been made, but grudgingly just let it pass, vouching to go another place next time.

Still rehashing about the ordeal days later, maybe they thought their customer was an outlaw. Better yet on the positive, perhaps the old man looks 50 years younger than he is.

Yes, young people buying booze and smokes are a problem requiring age verification. Likewise, it’s said certain adults wrongly attempt to get senior discounts, thus requirement to prove maturity before receiving lower rates.

Upon review, checkout calculations were wrong, but no gump to attempt correction.

Reminded of Exodus 10:9: “We’re taking young and old, everyone counts.”


030615-franksmug2Frank J. Buchman is a lifelong rancher from Alta Vista, a lifetime newspaper writer, syndicated national ag writer and a radio marketing consultant. He writes a weekly column to share A Cowboy’s Faith.


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