Seven Eleven


One of the times I was held hostage inside of a Seven Eleven, I found that my fear of dying wore off rather quickly and was replaced by my fear of getting hungry and then dying. After a few minutes of lying face down on the cold tile floor, I began to crave one of the chocolate peanut butter Balance bars on the shelf in front of me. I wasn’t exactly hungry yet but I knew that with the adrenaline rush I was having, I would be shortly and I would be glad to have that Balance bar. What if we were taken to a different location? Somewhere where there was no food. What if he tied us up? It could be hours before my next meal or my death. I needed that bar. Maybe even two. I decided it was worth the risk of getting shot.
I waited for the right moment to take action. The man with the gun was near the counter, yelling at an older man who was having difficulty laying face down on the floor. To our captor’s dismay, shoving the old man with his machine gun did not make him more agile. I took advantage of this distraction and slowly inched my hand over to the shelf. I did my best to ignore the glares shot at me by the other captives. I silently grabbed two of the bars and laid back down on the floor. As I was about to put them in my purse, I realized that they were the chocolate chip cookie dough bars and not the chocolate peanut butter ones. Yuk. Momentarily forgetting my situation, I tossed the bars back and peered into the box. They were ALL chocolate chip cookie dough. I started to get angry. I removed the mislabeled box and reached for an unopened box on the back of the shelf. After making sure this box was filled with the right bars, I slipped it into my bag and laid down. Victory!
Our kidnapper was busy loading up baskets full of disposable cameras and batteries. As I laid on the ground, proud of myself for thinking ahead, another thought entered my mind. Just Balance bars? This could be my last meal and all I had was a box of Balance bars? I at least needed something salty to go with the sweet. Potato chips! Shoot. They were in the next aisle. This was going to be difficult. I would have to climb over all the hostages. I trusted my own ability to move silently but could I trust theirs? I would have to.
I slid my way over to the other hostages. I placed my hand on one of the arms of the man next to me and he remained silent. I was off to a good start. However, when I placed my knee on the small of his back and shifted my weight onto him, he said “oof” and even though I shushed him, he continued to groan. I glanced up and saw that the kidnapper was looking right at me.
”What are you doing!!?? he roared, “I have locked all the doors! You can’t escape.” “I know. I just… I just wanted some potato chips.” He reached over and grabbed a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos and threw them at me. “There. Now lay down and shut up!” Those were not my favorite chips. So I said “These are not my favorite chips.” I thought about handing them back to him but decided not to make a fuss. I put them in my purse and laid back down. “Aren’t you going to eat them?” he asked. “No. No. They’re for later. If there is a later,” I said smiling. He did not smile back. “Alright! Nobody move! Don’t move! Nobody!” With the machine gun in one hand and the shopping baskets in the other, the man walked backwards over to the front door. He set his baskets down and fiddled with the keys. Now that he was leaving, I wondered if I would get to keep the food that was in my purse. This all happened much faster than I had imagined and I had been looking forward to eating those bars. I decided to open one of the Balance bars and eat it just in case they wanted to take it back. I figured that whatever food I ate during my captivity would be free.
I was wrong. As soon as the kidnapper left, the clerk, who had locked himself behind the bulletproof counter came out and told me I owed him $1.75 for the bar I had eaten and if I didn’t put the other stuff back he was going to call the cops.


4 thoughts on “Seven Eleven

  1. This is one of my favorites. I think I both hurt my jaw laughing AND got hungry… niiiice

    P.S. the art show reception was wonderful, thanks for the invite!


  2. i cracked on the first line….very much unsaid, just hints of a situation letting the reader fill in the blanks…it feels like a 50’s detctive novel meets mr. bean….good…i love you

    el jesus


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