Semper Fi

Keep it Real Wednesday

October 14, 2020

Semper Fi

Today, I want to share something with you that happened to Wade and I on a trip to a local big box store this week

In the checkout line, we noticed a woman with a teenage daughter launching a vicious and vulgar verbal attack on an 80 plus year old man in the check-out line.

They were side by side in separate lanes.  The older man softly asked the woman, as her mask was dangling off her ear and laying on her shoulder, “Aren’t we supposed to wear masks in this store”?

The woman became unhinged at the man and began yelling obscenities.  Her teenage daughter joined in and soon the person behind her in line took off his mask and started yelling at the man too.

We quickly alerted the staff who stood shell shocked and didn’t know how to handle the situation.  We then alerted another employee who said she would call someone, but no one ever arrived.

I approached the gentleman, placing my body between him and the people yelling at him, and placed my hand on his shoulder and asked if he was okay.  He said he was fine, but he was visibly shaken.  

Things seemed to quiet down for a moment so we continued with checking out our items in the checkout line.  

I withheld commenting until I just couldn’t help myself anymore.  I said something to the Mom and daughter about their lack of respect to this gentleman. Their tirade was now directed at me, full of F bombs, again while the staff, and other shoppers, bowed their heads and said nothing.

It took every ounce of my energy to withhold engaging any further.   I glanced at the pulse on my fit bit and it was 92 – ready for battle pulse!

Wade and I quietly left the store behind the older man as we followed him to his car to make sure he was okay. He asked us if we felt they were going to assault him?   Wade told him they would have to get through us first.  He smiled through his mask and his eyes welled up a bit.

Once he was safely inside his card, we said our goodbyes and we noticed the bumper sticker on his car –

The lightbulb went on.

His veteran cap, his Semper Fi bumper sticker.  My own eyes welled up a bit as I reflected on what his life journey may have been like.

Thank you, Sir, for your service and I apologize for the world you are witnessing today.

This is not what you fought for.

We can all do better.

(note, this post is not about masks – it’s about treating each other with respect and caring)

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