Me, to the convenience store clerk: Do you sell chocolate covered pretzels?
Clerk, confused, coming out from behind the counter: Pencils, ma'am?
Me, tired but amused: No... uh, chocolate covered pretzels?
Clerk, concerned, very gently: Chocolate covered pencils, ma'am? I think, maybe not, ma'am?
Me, beaten: No, of course not. You're right.
Sarah Elovich is a writer and performer based in Oakland, CA.