Mysterious Ways

Tonight was the last night of my grad school class, and after several weeks of frantic communication with my group members, I was more than ready to be finished with this presentation.  It was only after I arrived that I realized we were only one of three groups who had to present on a project that was long, disorganized and misdirected in ways that are too tiresome to revisit here; each one would prove to be nearly an hour long.

So, about halfway through the first one, I stumbled out the door intending to go buy a coffee.  One vending machine was marked "out of order."  I swiped my student ID on the other one several times, and after a succession of beeps and flashes, realized it wasn't working.  No matter; I had one tattered dollar and some change, which I fed into the machine only to find that while it happily accepted my currency, it was still unwilling to surrender any caffeine.  The coin return lever jiggled loosely about, and I could have sworn I heard a faint giggle emanating from the faulty mechanism.

Enraged, I dialed the number on the side of the machine.  ("Having trouble? Call us!")  No answer.  I dialed again.  Nothing.  My color rose.

I re-entered the room just as my group was taking the stage and hissed an abridged version of the story to a classmate.  "And I never even got my coffee!"  I glowered in conclusion.

"Yeah, but it worked, right?  You don't look tired anymore."

I couldn't argue with that, although I sure wanted to.