Buy a sandwich. Get a ticket with a mystery prize hidden beneath a silvery, scratch-off veneer.
First of all, I already hate lunch. It's worthless. It's boring. It's a waste of money and the only reason I do it is because I don't want to be that nameless girl passed out on a floor somewhere while strangers rifle through my text messages under the guise of looking for my identification. Dump out my purse and realize the only thing in there are wadded receipts and markers. Press their chapped lips against my face and honk on my diaphragm.
So the least of the possible evils is this fast-food chain sandwich shop, where I eat every fucking day.
I have these cards everywhere. In the pockets of my jeans. In my purse. Bookmarking pages.
This young girl came up to my table yesterday, stared dully into my eyes and said:
"Do you drive?"
If I gave the wrong answer at this particular sandwich shop, I could find myself abetting a teen-aged runaway. So I looked at her. Stammered something about being physically capable of driving a car, and even owning a car, but not having parked it in a convenient location, so if she's looking to meet up with her internet boyfriend at boot camp, she's out of lu--
"I don't drive," she said, and handed me a scratch off card for 5 cents/gallon off of gas.
I was trudging through the skywalk and a policeman was giving me a weird look. I did a quick mental rundown of the possible crimes I'd maybe committed in the past five minutes and came up empty. I might have looked suspicious. Big backpack. Huge purse filled with nothing. A hat pulled low over my eyes. Or maybe I was being paranoid.
Nope. Still giving me a weird look. Finally he said:
"Could you do me a favor? Could you go into the women's bathroom and see if anyone is in there?"
"Sure," I said. "Is this dangerous?"
"Nah," he said. "Well, it shouldn't be. Anyway, I'll be right out here."
Great. So he could finally hear what it sounds like when an innocent bystander is stabbed. I imagined myself walking in, kicking down stall doors, two girls attacking me with jagged fingernails and vice grips on chunks of my hair. The policeman shuffling his feet and whistling something by the Red Hot Chili Peppers while my bra is snapped and I'm given a swirly.
Anyway, there was no one in the bathroom and I was a little disappointed that I didn't thwart anything.