The muffin incident

Shall we start with some foreshadowing? Last week, Leah was nearly run down by an impatient driver in a Whole Foods parking lot; the driver then proceeded to scream at her. In her post, she commented “it amazes me how horrible we can treat each other just because we are strangers.”

*insert ominous music*

A few days ago, I stopped in my neigborhood co-op on my way home from work and was delighted to discover that it was gluten-free cherry almond muffin day and there were muffins remaining. (The muffin schedule varies monthly and seasonally. There’s a gluten-free muffin every day, but usually they are long gone by the time I get to the co-op. It’s been at least six months since gluten-free cherry almond muffins were on the schedule.) I carefully placed the last five muffins in a bakery bag (the muffins freeze really well).

This guy walked up to me and asked if I planned on taking all of the gluten-free muffins. Um, yes, since I just put them into the bag… He freaked out and called me a jerk, then a bitch, then an asshole, then started saying things like “You look like a nice person, but you’re obviously a nasty bitch!” WTF?! He continued stomping around and shooting me nasty glances and saying crap like that as I took my cart and walked down the next aisle. A few minutes later, I happened to look up as I was getting something out of the freezer and he was standing at the end of the aisle, flipping me off and yelling, “Bitch!!!!” I flipped him off in return, grabbed the last few things I needed, and got in a checkout line.

I was really quite freaked out by then and kept darting nervous glances around as I paid for my groceries and headed out of the store. I would not have been at all surprised if the guy had darted out, pushed me down, and taken my bag of muffins! Fortunately, that did not happen – I got in my car, drove home, froze the muffins, and sat down to write Tuesday’s list of things that make me happy. Like Leah, I had a strong urge to “accentuate the positive” and not dwell on the incident.

I’m writing about it now because I can see the utter surreality of the situation. Since the muffin incident, I have been observing people more closely, seeing how easily we lash out when angry or impatient instead of dealing with it, or excusing ourselves, or apologizing, or just being kind to the people around us. I can see where I do the same thing sometimes (although certainly not to the degree of the muffin man), and I’m resolving to be more patient and more aware of others.

Related to being aware of others and accentuating the positive, I knitted a few pieces for the Blanket of Hope that Rebekah’s putting together from some yarn I dyed last summer. Hopefully Rebekah will be able to use these for fill-in bits throughout the blanket.

Besides knitting, some other positives…

*purrrrrrrrr* -C & M

78 thoughts on “The muffin incident”

  1. Let me guess, the Wedge?? What a jerk, some people. I just wonder how you get to that point, I mean over muffins. Well I think your a wonderful person, even if I know you through text..

  2. I still can’t believe this happened to you. People are jerks but I’m with you on the resolution to be more patient and as kind as possible.

    Hopefully we can pass it on! 🙂

  3. WTF! I can’t imagine what he’d be like over something really important. We all have our days, but this goes way over the top. On a brighter note, that’s an extremely cute kitty pic.

  4. OH my god Chris, I’m so sorry that happened to you of all people. You’re like the nicest most thoughtful person I can think of.
    I truly hope that freak of a human being didn’t leave a lasting impression. I swear there are more and more people out there who just can’t handle their anger issues and it’s pretty scary. But I believe that karma will come back to him in some way and make him even more miserable than he already is.
    I wish I could give you a hug right now.

  5. That’s awful. Things like that leave you shaky and rattled – it is awful how we treat each other sometimes! I’m glad you’re okay.

    That picture, however, goes a loooong way to restoring my faith in the world!

  6. What a jackass. And to keep carrying on and on about it? Grow up and deal with the lack of gluten muffins, dude. I’m glad you didn’t leave him any. Attitude like that does not deserve muffins. Kind of creepy/scary though.

  7. That’s absolutely insane! It’s scary how out of control people can get over the littlest things. Maybe he had a really, really bad day and just couldn’t take one more thing. But it’s still no excuse, I’m glad he didn’t follow you out. Next time you have that feeling, ask if there’s a manager that can walk you to your car.

    And I love, love, love your pieces. I’m so excited for the triangle! I know of at least one other triangle that’s coming. Plus I plan to knit some.

    Now snuggle up with the kitties.

  8. The picture of kitterly love.
    Yes, I have noticed that we are mean to strangers. I have also noticed family members who treat their family like crap but would give a complete stranger the shirt off their back.I think it’s very cool of you to make a concious effort to stay cool.
    I wish we had a co-op. Although, after the muffin man incident, not so much. It’s hard to find good health food in Pennsylvania Dutch country. Scrapple…don’t ask.
    I found a banker last night, hiding in the dust of my resume.

  9. STOP the madness, Muffin Man! I hope he doesn’t have a kitty at home.

    Personally, I probably would have come unhinged on him. Good for you for mustering some composure and class!

  10. Something must have already put him in a bad mood before he saw you with the muffins. I cannot fathom that anyone could get *that upset* over muffins…but if he keeps it up, he’s going to have a heart attack. Can you imagine what he must be like if there’s something worth getting upset about?! I feel sorry for his coworkers or whomever lives with him…egads.

    C&M are definitely the perfect comfort after that episode. It reminds me of that bumper sticker, if I have it right: “the more I meet new people, the more I like my cats.” 🙂

  11. While it is awful to have to deal with a person like that, think how much worse it would be to BE a person like that.

    The other thing I thought was, Someone needs a nap 🙂

    Enjoy your muffins and kitties.

  12. OMG!

    Now that would have made a great first sentence for a beginning of the month post next year.

    So sorry. It is February and you live in an area where SAD is probably among the highest.

  13. omg! the crazy muffin man! eeek!

    having lived in NYC for so long, i thought i’d gotten used to crazy outbursts from people…but that’s *really* pretty extreme, even by NYC standards.

    i’m glad you didn’t give up any of your muffins. i’m generally such a coward and a push-over that i give in to bullying (“uh, okay, are you saying that you would like to split these muffins with me, crazy muffin man?”) and then feel like a complete idiot/sucker afterwards. (which feels, in the end, far worse than running in the other direction, methinks…)

    on the plus side–purrpurr!!! (whew…)

  14. People are crazy — thank goodness ones like the Muffin Man are few and far between. And let’s just hope he was having a bad day. ; )

    I’m excited to see you this weeekend!

  15. my word! OVER A FREAKING MUFFIN????
    I would have waved the bag around infront of his face lol
    Then I probably would have preceeded to get pummelled but it would have been sooo worth it *grins*
    Your blanket squares are yummy!!!! Love those colours together.

  16. Such a big to-do over muffins, good grief. I imagine that if he’d just *asked nicely* you might’ve shared, but that was obviously out of the question given his attitude. Then again, I always seem to run into that sort of person at the Wedge or Whole Foods. Never at Mississippi Market, though.

    I love the blanket squares and strips! The diagonal ones are especially attractive, I think.

  17. Sorry to hear you ran into a gluten-free crazed man. If it weren’t unlikely, I’d almost say he was hypoglycemic and doesn’t know how to deal with his celeriac.Too bad he didn’t ask for just one muffin. It might have calmed him down to eat something!

  18. heh, just chuckling over eklectica’s comment!~
    That was very scary, Chris. We just don’t know where things like this are heading, hearing too much of this type of incident on the news almost every day.
    Imagine for a minute if that man had expressed disappointment in an appropriate way. If he said POLITELY that he had been looking forward to that muffin for ages. You would have probably offered him one of them. He shot himself in the foot.
    Politeness wins every time!
    You must have been shaking so badly!

  19. I wonder what makes people think that they can get away with being so nasty ? That incident would have shaken me up to, and I’m glad that you’re safe. (he sounds like a scarey dude)

  20. EEK. One time I got scared at a guy being an eejit while I was waiting tables. The manager called the cops, and to calm me down said “You’ll go home, get a good night’s sleep, wake up tomorrow and be over it…and he’ll still be an ——-.”

    Best advice I ever got.

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