This evening I went to my local supermarket to buy the ingredients for a cake I have been dying to make. I was presenting as male, but wearing a lot of female accessories.
I was wearing off-white flannel shorts (very short) for starters, a blousy white shirt from the beach, a pair of beige pointy-toed slippers, aviators, and a light pink face mask. Everything would be gendered female except the sunglasses, which are very macho.
I did make flirty eye contact with an attractive young woman in the dairy aisle as we both looked for things that were not there. I noticed how pretty her face mask was–it was a tie-dye cloth pink and orange one.
Moments later, I pounced on the first checkout lane as it was almost empty, but when the lady was ringing up my few items, I realised I had forgotten my wallet. I apologised to the woman behind me, who turned out to be the same woman, and she said, “no problem, it happens all the time.”
“It’ll only take a second,” I said optimistically, as the checkout lady was helping me do Apple Pay. Amazingly, there is still a first time for that, but I was set up and ready to go.
The store manager was standing nearby and said, “today’s your lucky day. She’s paying for you,” and indicated the woman behind me.
“You can’t do that,” I said, feeling very solicitous towards her.
“I already did,” she said. “It’s a pleasure.”
“You are so sweet, I can’t believe it. Nobody has ever done that for me. I’m making lemon cake.”
“Don’t worry about it, it’s my pleasure.”
“I just can’t get over it. You are so sweet. Oh, you just made my day.”
Her eyes gave me a huge smile and so did her face behind the mask and I was on my way. Does this happen ever? I would think if a guy did it, it would seem creepy. How often does someone buy your groceries? Was it my outfit? The pink face mask? She didn’t ask for my number. Was I supposed to ask for hers? Was she just in a hurry and impatient? Or was she just a really, really sweet stranger? I think so. I prefer to think of people not having ulterior motivation. The world seems nicer that way.