When I was little I had one friend who could get me to do almost anything. Honestly, she just had to open her mouth and my brain would immediately shut off. Of course, she would play tricks on me all the time. Her best one, and one that I laughed at a lot later, was getting me to read the menu at McDonalds.
“Hey Cara, what does it say on the bottom of the menu there?”
“Can’t you read? It says Smiles, free.”
She knew she was about to reel me in. I never could resist a good deal.
“Why don’t you go ask for one?”
“What, a smile? It’s just a joke.”
“Oh, no. This is different. It’s special.”
Boy was I excited now. Something other than the Treat of the Week was free and I was about to get one of my very own. I skipped up to the counter. Peering down at me was a very tall teenager. I wouldn’t let that intimidate me, no siree bob.
“Welcome to McDonalds, make I take your order?”
“Yes, I’d like a smile please.”
She looked at me and smiled.
“Ok, could I please have one?”
She glared but her mouth smiled even larger.
“Please? Could I have one?”
She wasn’t even trying now. “Look kid. Very funny, ha, ha. Stop asking.”
I couldn’t understand, I wasn’t laughing. “But it’s right up there on the menu … Smiles Free.”
“I get it kid. Go away.”
“But can I have it? It’s like a treat of the week, only better.”
She would have walked away if she had not noticed my friend and her brother giggling away at me just off to the side.
“Sorry kid,” she said, “smiles are just smiles. Have a treat of the week … and go kick your friend in the shins for me.”