To the guy who got upset after I refused to smile at his perpetuation of rape culture

Let me tell you a secret
this uniform says I am forced to
remain behind capitalism’s threshold–
behind the machine
in which I place your currency. This
interaction ends when you receive your product.

This company, this country
have made me their moneymaking appendage,
stripping me
of my God-ordained responsibility to tell you
that I have one rule:
I do not respond to jokes.

I have churned out pizzas for this godforsaken
place long enough to know you,
long enough to know your gait,
long enough to know your tone,
long enough to know the twitch in your eyes
which lets me know you have just
briefly dissected my body.

For my honor’s sake, I don’t know
why I have let you infect my mind,
but this is the exchange we have:

“Would you like anything else with that?” I said.
“A new brain,” you say. You
look at me, and I feel your scalpel sliding
over skin, and I feel
small, you asked me if I was grumpy
I am not grumpy
I know you, I am
terrified of your power
“You’ll have to go to
the Wizard of Oz for that.”

Let’s pause and reflect on this for a moment–
how can anyone
turn Oz into something sexual?

“I got kicked out because
I was flirting with all of his girls.”

You, sir, should win a trophy for
making Oz sexual.

More importantly, you have
reinforced my confidence in the fact that
I know you,
I know people,
I know you, and
I know that I should have never
broken my one rule:

I do not respond to jokes.

This company, this country
have sewn my lips shut, so I cannot
call you what I want to call you
when you tell me
I need
to smile.

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