I was standing in line at the cash, just about to unload a full cartload of groceries and happened to notice that the person directly behind me had only a couple of items. After looking up and making eye contact,
"Umm, you can go ahead of me if you want..." gesturing with a sweep to the conveyor belt.
"oh, uhhh sure... Thanks!"
A bit of juggling, during which I noticed that the mid20somethingyearold behind him had a half-dozen of items in her basket.
"uhhh, ... d'you want to too? You've only got a couple of things...?"
"No, that's okay. Thanks."
And then: it happened. My Dad jumped straight out of my mouth:
"after all... you can do better than that!" gesturing with a nod down to the paltry contents of her basket shielding her body. "HA HA ha ha heh heh. erhmmm"
"henh." says her, smiling slightly, no eye crinkles though... humouring the mid40s too talkative Mom. Sad, really...
I turn back and start unloading my cart, mentally OMFGing. I can't believe it!
Later on that day I'm FaceTime-ing with my sister and she says she recently had a very similar experience - at the grocery store too. She thought she was just 'being friendly' with the cashier when partway through the conversation she realized that the girl was just humouring her. She was channelling our Dad too!
It IS genetic! Now I'm really scared...
"ahh, she's still bunched up inside at that age" says my longtime friend. It's true you know. I would've reacted much the same at her age. I think. But then again, having grown up with a father who chatted up strangers, maybe not.