City Paper is not for tourists
Last night, I was standing in line at the Safeway on Columbia Rd. & 18th St. I was preparing to trade 11 dollars and 70 cents for two cans of soup and six beers. A man to my right began to gesticulate forcefully. “Fuck you!” The man screamed. “You’ll never work at Safeway again!” He moved very close to a man in a black leather jacket, a black shirt, and a black winter cap. This man said nothing. “Fuck you, motherfucker! The man screamed. “Don’t ever try to check me without a badge!”
The screaming man pivoted and zeroed in on a cashier. “Are you the manager?” The man screamed at her. “Are you the manager?” he repeated. She was not the manager. “You better watch your job if you’re employing people like this at Safeway!” He was referring to the man in a black leather jacket, a black shirt, and a black winter cap.
A security guard began to direct the man out of the store. He flailed briefly, stuck himself in the doorway, and screamed. “I don’t need to steal anything!” The man screamed. “I’ve got plenty of money! I’m a millionaire!” The automatic door shut upon him.
“That will be eleven dollars and seventy cents,” said the cashier. I paid him and exited the supermarket. The man was loitering outside. He gestured absently at a line of cars. “You better watch out for them. You. Better. Watch,” the man said. I smiled at the man and walked away. That man is a millionaire, I thought.
“You’ll never see me shopping in Safeway again!” The man screamed after me. He was probably right.