Incentives
Beverly Vines-Haines

Sadie Chekouff pisses me off. Slow. Methodical. No angst, no whining, no ambition. My old man used to have an expression for people like Sadie. "She doesn't know her ass from a grape," he'd say. True enough. Sadie has the IQ of a four-year-old. Right now she's pushing all my buttons, plodding around the food court at the Tulsa International Airport, filling napkin holders, adding those little packets of salt and pepper to bins and pushing stir sticks for coffee into a box already bulging with the things. There they go, spilling out on the floor. Ten thousand feet tromp through that spot every day of the world and Sadie's going to scoop those sticks off the floor and put every one of them back in the box. Life's a damn game to Sadie. No furtive moves for her. She waves at passersby and grins at all the kids with her toothless smile. Me? I sell cinnamon buns across the aisle. Pay sucks. Every once in a while I tap the till. Salary incentive, I call it. So one day Sadie appears like a ghost, watching me as I pocket a ten. Even if she tells, who will believe her. She serves sticks off the floor for god's sake. Think I care? Hell no. I don't use cream or sugar. But like I said, Sadie Chekouff pisses me off.


First published: May, 2004
comments to the writer: Knob'sWriter@iceflow.com