Andujar: The tyranny of the Grumpies

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This is an installment of Suzette Andujar’s weekly column “As I Was Saying.”

All I wanted was an iced coconut milk mocha macchiato. Instead, all I got was a cold, dismissive stare and a “Next!” in my face. Instead of feeling bad and worrying what was wrong with me, I smiled and cheered a, “Thank you!” because why not? After all, it’s not my fault that she was having a unfortunate case of the Grumpies.

In case you don’t know, the Grumpies is a disease that affects millions, excuse me, billions of people. It doesn’t matter what race, age or gender a person might be. As a matter of fact, I personally know a dog that suffers from this condition. Be cautious, as this illness is extremely contagious and there’s an element of mind control. I could have easily caught the Grumpies from the barista, but because of my street smarts, I was able to prevent the condition from spreading, therefore allowing my mind to be free from the tyranny of this heartless affliction.

My first job was in a daycare, where the disease ran rampant. Toddlers, parents and bosses suffered from the Grumpies. I had sippy cups thrown in my face, sippy cups that paid no regard for the delicacy of my constitution, and coworkers who complained about the injustices of life. When I walked into the DMV to renew my license, well, we’ll just leave that one right there.

We’ve examined examples to excavate the emphasis of the epidemic, now we can explore the expressions. A person with the Grumpies may experience sudden hearing and vision loss. No matter how loudly you say, “Hello,” or how wide your smile is, Grumpysaurus will not hear or see you. Witnesses describe feeling bad about themselves, as if their lives never mattered, but you don’t have to feel this way. Just smile and continue on with your day. There is nothing wrong with you and you did not cause Grumpzilla’s bad day. A person with the Grumpies may also exhibit sudden bouts of sarcasm, eye-rolls, teeth sucking and have an overall attitude. If you encounter one, I warn you, just keep smiling. It may make Grumpystilskin angrier, but will give you peace of mind.

I admit, I’ve experienced an attack of the Grumpies, and when it comes down to it, all I needed was a good laugh to make it through. I like to keep that in mind when dealing with grumpy people. When Willy Wonka got cranky at the end of the movie, all Charlie had to do was give him the everlasting gobstopper and suddenly Wonka was all happy and laughing again. I think I’ll carry around a bag filled with gobstoppers and hand them out when I feel a person needs help. The next time I go back to the barista, I’ll order a white chocolate mocha frappuccino and smile brightly. When she basically throws the drink at me, I’ll silently place a gobstopper on the counter and walk away. Who knows? She might chase me, tell me how wonderful I am and that I’ve won the factory.

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