I’d like to speak to the manager. Yes, I’ll wait right here.

Photo of peeled banana on yellow plate and background.

Aleksandar Pasaric photo.

The manager is of course somewhere else in the store, presumably managing, so it takes a while for her to come to the front desk. She has her game face on. The young employee who paged her for me looks on.

“Maybe this is a dumb thing, and if so I apologize for calling you away from your work,” I say. “But in the produce section… the arrangement of bananas is just delightful.”

Neatly stacked, with the yellow bunches that they’ll want to sell today or tomorrow at eye level, and the green bunches less prominent. In between the bunches are single bananas, every one of them placed so they curve exactly the same way. Sorted by size and color.

I wish I had taken a picture.

I tell the manager how, as I was walking down the produce aisle, “I did a double-take, and I thought to myself, ‘Someone worked really hard arranging those bananas.’ So I thought I’d come speak to the manager about it.”

The manager blinks for a moment. “It was the new kid,” she says, breaking into a proud smile. “A 16yo with a good work ethic.”

“Well please let the new kid know that someone noticed.”

As I walk away, I see a third employee approaching. I hear the manager say to this person, “Good job.”

“Are you the one?” I say, locking my eyes on the newcomer. “Was it you?”

Based on the number of customers who stop and stare, yeah, maybe I kind of actually shouted that from halfway across the store, while pointing dramatically, with my arm outstretched.

I turn on a smile, and kind of gesture with my armful of bananas to indicate what I was talking about, but I’m not sure at that point it helps much.

Anyway, the produce aisle really did look nice.

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