Some things don’t happen every day

So I walk into the store, and a girl says to me, “Excuse me, ma’am, I know this is going to sound funny, but .”

It took me a minute or two to realize the girl was trying to get my attention.

The “ma’am” threw me, I have to say.

When I looked her way, I realized two things – I was the “ma’am” she was after, and “ma’am” is one of those courtesy titles that a younger person uses to address an older person.


She is talking to me.

“Could I buy that shirt you’re wearing?”

I squinted.

I do that sometimes, thinking that it will somehow improve how I process information, including a request from a total stranger interested in literally purchasing the clothing right off my back.

I couldn’t even remember what I was wearing until I looked for myself.

I had on the red hooded U.S. Marine Corps sweatshirt that Better Half had bought me for Christmas at my request. My other U.S. Marine Corps sweatshirt that I wore all the time was starting to look a little ratty, so I decided it was time to expand my leisure wardrobe at his expense, of course.

Ho, ho, ho.

So there’s a reason why this young lady wants to buy my U.S. Marine Corps red sweatshirt with the Marine logo.

She likes it.

And besides, her husband who’s with her, is a Marine.

Very interesting.

Even so, I politely declined.

I explained that Better Half, my husband who was with me, is a Marine, too, having served in the reserves.

Plus I like that sweatshirt.

We just so happened to both be in Marine attire, as Better Half was wearing his Marine T-shirt. We kind of matched.

It was a coincidence, though, that we were dressed his-and-her Marine style, which doesn’t usually happen.

Sometimes we do wear his-and-hers Herald-Star, Weirton Daily Times Community Night Pittsburgh Pirates T-shirts.

We like to think that will improve the likelihood of a Pirates victory.

Play ball.

I told the nice young lady where Better Half had purchased the sweatshirt, assuring her that she could probably do likewise and get one made just like mine.

That seemed to cheer her.

As we walked away from the couple to start grocery shopping, I told Better Half that strangers don’t usually make an on-the-spot offer to buy what I’m wearing.


Chalk that up in the category of things that just don’t happen every day.

Yes, ma’am.

Semper fi.

(Kiaski, a resident of Steubenville, is a staff columnist and features writer for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and community editor for the Herald-Star. She can be contacted at