"I wont'a her" is the best rendition I can do of "I want to hear." Boys and girls, this went past Ebonics and the southern drawl. This went straight to "WHAT?"
On my way to the back to pick up more stock, associates were excitedly huddled together in small groups, whispering. Asked one of them what I'd missed ('cause I'm nosy like that). An escapee. Fellow had been caught shoplifting. Everything was going fine; he was going to jail. He managed to escape the group in the long and narrow room, with people around him, and barreled through the store to the front. Understand he went from 0 to 100 mph within a second. Hit the glass plate door, knocking it off kilter (it didn't open fast enough) and across the lot. Ripley's finest in hot pursuit. A field (farm land) is adjacent to the store and that's where the fight was on. For socks and deodorant? Not one stick of deodorant, mind you, but tons of deodorant. They said he'd just gotten out of the "pen." Guess he's on his way back.
In the back, I'm filling my cart and people are talking as they unload the truck. One of the men had on a walkie-talkie and we could hear bits and pieces of what was going on. "What's your location?" "Front of the store (pant, pant)." Out of the blue, a coworker says, "Slow down. You moving too fast. I wont'a her." She was telling a coworker that he kept moving out of range and she couldn't hear. I looked back stunned and then broke out laughing with and at her. My behind would have been toast if she'd known I was laughing at her. She's a rough character and can probably hold her own.
Evidently I passed "greeters class 101" with flying colors. I got tapped to spell one of the regulars for her lunch. My back doesn't like this position. Developed pains within minutes. Psychological? "Welcome to Wal-Mart." "Have a good evening." People up front are telling anyone who will listen about the "Great Flight." Everybody has a different tale. Two males walk past with a pack of diapers; one has a receipt in his hand. "Have a good evening." Behind me comes "Sir, sir." Damned if they hadn't stolen the diapers. Must have figured I wasn't going to check the receipt.
And to top it off? Older couple with, I assume, grandkids are on their way out of the store. "Have a good evening." The recording "Please step back and an associate will assist you" came on. Damned if the young girl hadn't tried to get out with something on her body. One Security member is still outside wrangling with the diaper snatchers. Anwar, head of Security, gently leads her to the back. The grandparents are looking confused. My relief stint is at an end. Thank you, very much. Putting up stock in housewares is safer, not as exciting, but infinitely safer.
The full moon has passed. It was raining cats and dogs. The crowd was thin. If I were of the thieving mind, I would have waited until the store was full. But what do I know about thieving? I chuckled on my lunch break when the thought hit me--This is little, clean-living, country, Ripley, where nothing happens. R-I-G-H-T.