I got the list, stuff to buy,
walked through the massively crowded supermarket, wearing the mask.
now, coming home, I realize that despite the list , I didn't buy milk.
how could I possibly forget milk?!
why must everything be so awful?
I wait , preplexed. confused as to the next step to take.
go back? wait in line, pay?
come home, without milk?
in the distance, standing in front of me, I see salvation. I see the vending machine.
it has yogurt, of a million brands, all sugary, all terrible.
and one measly slot,G6, reserved for fresh milk, in a box.
I take out my wallet and discover that I only have a large bill. this machine doesn’t eat that elitist crap. only lower end bills, and meager denominstions.
searching my pockets, I find a five RMB bill. I feed it in, press G6 , and the machine rejects the purple note.
I try again. I feed, G6, rejection.
feed , G6, rejection. I streighten the bill, press it to make sure it goes through, but to no avail.
searching my pockets again , I find some coins, and a very crumbly 1RMB note. some more coins , I discover in the wallet, which had a zipper thing.
the coins are not enough. I feed them in, and most of them are too small to be accepted. the machine for some reason, is more than happy to take the 1rmb , but the ‘bank’ I have, does not add up. thinking fast, I try feeding the machine with the 5rmb bill again, hoping for a change of heart. but as I do, the time allotted for the transaction expires and all the coins and the crumply bill are ejected.
I G6 the panel, push the coins in. then the crumply. this time it got rejected.
the fiver was still persona non grata for this machine. the time expires.
I try again. G6, fiver first. the coins, the crumply one.
G6, crumply, fiver? no.
G6 fiver, coins? ejected, no time. the milk box sits there , taunting me. I am ready to scream!!
no one is around to break some change- of course there wont be. a mystical experience like this, deserves to be.experienced alone.
I AM SO ALONE!!!!!
back to work. G6, coins, crumply, fiver. rejected.
G6, crumply, fiver, coins. rejected. rejected. rejecred. rejected......
I meditate on this for a minute . then insert the coins, breathing deeply. it’s a little known fact, the breathing deeply, slows the local part of the universe. it was proven once by einstein, in fact.
breathing deeply, I insert tbe coins, in steely self restraint. Two RMBs , one half. I then streighten the crumply, without fear of the passage of time, without fear of the expiration of this transaction. it goes in. the five RMB note, comes next. I give it a good streightening, and feed it to the machine. key in the requesition. I hear a rumbling, and expect the coins to fall. but no. all I hear is the thud, of a carton hitting the plastic matting, that cushions the fall , inside the compartment.
the universe is finite. things happen. and this happened. there is no alternate reality, where I remembered the stupid milk back in the supermarket. or one where instead of a hundred RMB bill, I had a few tenners and fivers. all there is, is this moment. and this moment is triumph. it is success!!
I am man. conqueror of the machine! bringer of milk!
I bend down to claim my prize, lifting the flap. I reach inside blindly and immidiately know that something is wrong.
what I feel, is the rounded, plastic object that can not be anything but a fucking yogurt.
I Keyed in the wrong thing. G7!!!!