I asked the Costco checker, and did not wait for him to answer.
I just noticed that Costco never has any music playing.
I hate it. We're not allowed to. Except after closing.
Is it a corporate thing?
Is it that way at every Costco? No music or loudspeaker stuff?
Yeah, I think so.
sparkly stud gleaming.
What are you listening to outside of work?
I asked him as he stuck my new wifi router in a cardboard box.
Oh...I listen to a lot of electronic. EDM stuff,
he said in the bored universal tone of someone who knows something other people don't and never will.
Any EDM* in particular you're enjoying?
Well there's lots.
There's a lot of EDM out there.
Is there a DJ, or band or musician who stands out?
Well there's a bunch, it just depends on what you like.
So who is someone you like?
Well there's a lot.
he thought on his feet.
I guess there's uhh...Moto. Yeah. They're cool. EDM.
Rhymes with 'Toto?**'
He looked at me with another universal look that I well acquainted with: you're kind of weird,
and I grabbed my receipt and left.
And I thought of a sad truth that many people never quite catch on to: that a large percentage of the questions we ask anyone throughout the course of the day are not asked for the sake of getting concrete information about something that has a concrete, universal answer; they are asked to build a small moment of connection with a fellow human, and the idea is that there will possibly be a short moment of communication and connection that is personal, dynamic, and flowing two ways, and that leaves both humans just a little more chipper and positive about the day ahead.
Of course, we all have our defensive mechanisms and coping strategies for dealing with situations and people that don't quite go that way,
so I smiled at him as I left and scribbled notes down on my 3x5 paper in my back pocket that has now become this little interaction as detailed above (see above).
Not a bad fella, just someone who managed to make his interactions with humanity less than they could have been at that particular convergence of time and space. But I have bad days and morose moments too, so I shall wish him well from afar, and go out of my way next time to go through his line and see if he knows who Toto is yet.
Now I'm off to crank some Chemical Brothers, who can blockrock Moto off the stage any day of the week in my book.
*EDM=electronic dance music
**initially meant at the time to reference the '80s band Toto who had the monster hit "Africa," but also could point to the Wizard of Oz; a reference I like more and more the more I think about it.