I had the best experience at Blockbuster last night.
I've had myself on a pretty regular schedule of watching movies and going to bed at 9 since I came down with a particularly obnoxious cold and, having run out of Netflix to watch I stopped by my neighborhood Blockbuster on the way home from work last night. I selected disc one of season two of The Secret Diary of a Call Girl, a sexy, hilarious Showtime show, and brought it up to the register, where I was greeted by a very tall, lanky boy, no older than seventeen, with a huge smile on his face.
"Hey, I'm Justin! Did you find everything OK?"
"I sure did--hack, hack--just this, thanks."
"Sure, do you have your Blockbuster card or your ID?"
"Here's my driver's license."
"OK, great!" (takes license and rings up video) "Oh my gosh, Gabrielle, this is SO exciting! Because of the Blockbuster Rewards program, you actually get a second disk for free! Want to go pick one out?
"Oh cool! Sure--hack--I'll be right back." (I grabbed the second disk of the same season).
"OK, great! Let me ring that up for you." (scans video, takes my cash, receipts start printing, including a few coupons) "Whoa! You get two coupons! One for a free rental this month and one for a free rental next month! This is so great! You are going to have so much fun watching free movies!"
"Oh great, thanks!" I could actually feel myself getting excited if, for no other reason than the fact that he seemed to be so excited about all my free movies.
"Here you go. These are due back by next Monday. Oh, and Gabrielle? You sound sick. I really hope you feel better. Eat some soup or something, OK?"
"Will do, Justin. Thanks again."
As I walked out to the parking lot and climbed into my car, I thought about what an uplifting experience being rung up by teenage Justin of the Church and Market Blockbuster was. His genuine glee about the transaction struck me as something we could all use a little bit more of. If he can conjure up such unbridled merriment about something as mundane as a video store transaction, the rest of us can surely bring a little more exuberance to our daily interactions. I'm a big believer that happiness is catching, and we could all use a little extra happiness these days.