Two Punches

I have been known to leave important things in places where they weren’t, shall I say, helpful. Like the four or five times I’ve left my laptop computer at home and not discovered it until I walked into my office. Or the countless times, I’ve put my cell phone in my desk charger and forgotten about it — until Nancy tracks me down on another phone and asks why I’ve been ignoring her calls.

But I never forget to carry my Peet’s Coffee card. There’s no way I could forget to have that business-card-size passport to caffeine with me. No, when there’s free coffee at stake, my mind is like a steel trap.

The deal with a Peet’s card is that the cashier punches it every time you buy coffee. Buy nine cups and the tenth cup is free. Nothing tastes quite as good as a cup of free coffee. Although, coffee at work is free and it tastes no where near as good as a free cup at Peet’s. I guess it’s because I’ve earned the free cup by keeping up with my card and remembering to have the cashier punch it.

Recently I noticed that some of my friends — I’m on a first name basis with all of the cashiers (of course, they wear name tags) — have been punching my card twice. I thought I was special. But I worried about it a little bit. I mean, was it fair to other customers that these lovely people are partial to me?

A couple of months ago, I decided to do the right thing and speak up.

“So, what’s so special about me?” I asked.

The young woman looked puzzled. “What?”

“Why are you giving me two punches?”

She smiled sheepishly and tapped a little sign next to the register.

“Senior Citizens receive two punches” it read.

“But I’m not a Senior Citizen,” I protested.

“Are you sure?” she inquired. “You know, it’s nothing to be ashamed of. And you get free coffee twice as fast,” she said helpfully.

“I am NOT a Senior Citizen!” I assured her.

“Okay, if you say so.”

I’ve noticed that she still punches my card twice when she thinks I’m not paying attention. I guess she thinks that I’ve just forgotten how old I am.

I won’t allow this to go on much longer. That’s just the kind of guy I am. And besides, I WILL be a Senior Citizen by Peet’s standards on my next birthday.

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