Would token sympathy be too much to ask?

    My shirt smells minty.
    I’m not crazy about this, but I don’t want to drive home to change. Gas prices, you know.
    I stopped at the gas station by my office for a coffee and a cheese pastry. In putting on the lid, though, I spilled the coffee — onto my shirt, making a mess and burning my belly. I grabbed napkins but saw my shirt was worse than that, so I wiped the cup and headed into the bathroom.
    Cold water for the burn would have been nice. The automatic faucets only offered warm water. But there was a high-powered dryer, so I rinsed and dried and called it good.
    When I went back out, the coffee was gone. I asked the woman cleaning the coffee area about it, figuring it might have been tossed. Yes, she said; they thought it had been abandoned.
    Reasonable enough, I thought. “I spilled the coffee and burned myself, and I had to take care of that,” I said.
    Her reply? “Well, you might want to get another one. Other people were trying to get in here and it was in the way.”
    Well, if I’d just made a mess, I’d have cleaned it up myself. If I hadn’t had a burn to deal with, I’d have set the coffee aside, but I was in a small hurry. And I’ve told her what happened, and don’t get even a token “I’m sorry that happened to you.”
    So, I might want to get another coffee? No, I might want to get out of your store as quickly as possible.
    The cashier tells me on the way out to have a good day. “Not likely,” I say, unsatisfied with the words even as I speak them. I’d been having a great day up until I left my car, and the rest of it probably would be fine. What I meant was, “You people are so callous I’m never setting foot in here again.”
    I probably won’t go back there. But am I expecting too much?

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