Mar 1, 2007

Brown-eyed sevens

And the girl with long brown hair and big brown eyes standing at the end of the grocery converyor belt, waiting for the rubber rollers to turn the groceries over to her, standing there with her right hand hidden in the open plastic bag, she said:

You know, with Darryl and me? Everything's sevens.

Emm hmmm, said the other girl, a girl with long brown hair and the big brown eyes and one hand on the cash register's keys and one hand sliding the groceries from the black belt over the red light scanner, beep, and onto the other belt. Dozen eggs. Ground beef. Milk, two quarts and two percent. Then the produce - lettuce, tomatos, onions, bell peppers, cucumbers, cilantro, spinach, lemons, grapefruit.

Both of the girls wore green aprons. Stood with their weight on one leg. Hips out. The bagger scratched her nose. The cashier brushed her hair back up over her right ear. She had three earrings. They stood there, in the queue.

Yeah, said the girl at the end. Either sevens or multiples of seven, like 49.

Did you notice, the other girl said, suddenly like it was a surprise, that nothing's priced per piece any more? Didn't all this use to be by the item? It's all by the pound.

Like both of us were born on a seven. Seven months apart. We started going out in July, which is seven.

They were silent, then, and the conveyor belts said emmm hmmm and the rollers turned the groceries down the row, towards the windows. The groceries moved slowly. The girls moved slowly. The three people in line stood there. Holding their wallets, their keys, their food. They stared at where the lights lined up along the speckled floor and the lines where the conveyor belt was scraped from turning. They looked at the candy and the magazines. They looked out the floor length window into the wash of the white of the sun.

I just think it makes more sense by the item. I don't know why they changed it. When did they change it? Did I just never notice?

Yeah, the girl said from the end, everything's sevens. Sevens, or sometimes multiples of sevens. Like I was saying.

So? said the cashier. Maybe it's your lucky number.

I guess, said the bagger.

I don't believe that, said the cashier.

What?

Lucky number shit. That's not true. It's nothing. You just start to notice it all the sudden.

I know, said the bagger. I know. Coincidence or something. I just thought it was interesting. You know, sevens.

Sure, said other girl. Sure. Emm hmmm.