There used to be a time when I absolutely loathed grocery shopping. It seemed a necessary evil that had to be performed on a scheduled basis, unless of course I was indulging in my cannibalistic tendencies. I hated the drive to the grocery store even if it was just across the street. If there was one crucial element of shopping I learned it was from my friend ICMB, it was this: he knew the layout of the store he frequented and would move with a shopping cart at 8 miles-per-hour through said establishment and complete his shopping list in 8.45 minutes. I had a tough time keeping up with him as he moved like a human tornado with items flying everywhere and people strewn about bloody and moaning. I take a similar approach to the chore: checklist made, store layout memorized and speed and accuracy when running people over.
The PK shopping experience is as follows. I drive to the store and proceed to park in the parking lot. Too many times there are shopping carts in the spaces so I must find one that is empty. Nothing worse than having to get out of my vehicle and move a shopping cart ONE space to the designated cart storage lane. LAZY BASTARDS! Also, no matter where you park, it can be the no manâ€™s land of the parking lot, an idiot will park beside you and let their shopping cart roll into your car and ding it after they unload it. My poor auto has multiple dings due to this. It cries out to me for vengeance so I carry three bear traps which I set and then walk away. No other shoppers park next to me now. I did capture one once, but by the time I arrived back at my car, he had chewed his ankle off and had escaped.
I reach the entrance and proceed to attain a cart. I must always attempt to stealthily sneak pass whatever agent of charity is sitting there. They cover both entrances so no one can sneak in. They will get you going in as well as out. You become quite dubious about said charities when you actually ask what they represent. I mean, is there really an â€œAssociation for the Preservation of Crossed Eyed, Three Legged Chihuahuasâ€? I find it quite tiresome so I printed up business cards I hand out declaring I am a deaf, mute, unemployed, nonpartisan atheist. I believe that covers all areas. Still how can you look into the cute, innocent faces of girl scouts wanting to sell you delicious cookies for an obscene price? They receive a business card also.
Through the door is the first of the obstacles. I begin my search in the vegetable\fruit section of the store. This, as well as the meat section, has for utilization plastic bags with which to â€œBagâ€ your ill-gotten goods. The problem I have with the bags are opening them. Some stores are brilliant in that they point to the end that does open. My grocery store does not and with the added handicap of cutting my nails, makes this task virtually impossible for me to accomplish. It takes me 30 minutes or more to discover which end opens and to get it open with my nubby fingernails. By then I am so frustrated I just place the bag over my head and begin to suffocate. Unfortunately, every time someone saves me from asphyxiation. What can they not pay attention to their OWN business and let me die near the onion section in peace? I have even had to go as far as to barter my services as a male prostitute to have someone open a plastic bag for me.
I love the idea that people believe they are the ONLY ones shopping at any one time. As they stroll through the super market, they will park their carts in the MIDDLE of the aisle so you cannot get around them. One of the more successful ploys I use is to speak excessively loud to myself on the subject of meeting a Bigfoot at the International House of Pancakes and his habit of ordering the Rooty Tooty Fresh ‘N Fruity breakfast and ducking out the back each and every time to forgo paying for the meal. I have one other choice and that is to run as fast as I can with my cart towards the offending person and scream at the top of my lungs, â€œItâ€™s all I kin give er Captain, I kin no give er any moor!â€ The collisions are spectacular, people are sent onto the shelves and I KNOW exactly what Scotty experienced in Star Trek in the engine room.
One thing I do really hate is perusing the ads for the store and spying a coupon I can use for a product I really want to buy and get at a discount. Inevitably, when I do a search on the specific sausage I want among the 30 brands and 156 sub categories, I can never find the sausage with the EXACT same wording as on the coupon. This method is akin to looking at a species chart with subspecies and phyla. Not to mention I have to tear the coupon from the ad, and due to the inability to tear along the couponâ€™s perimeter, it becomes an illegible piece of colored paper. I feel like I am back in first grade and using my HUGE pencil and bird scratching lines on a piece of BIG paper. I am so happy I have an opposable thumb. I am back to wearing diapers again but I do love my Spider-Man diapers.
Checkout is the ultimate in the conclusion of the shopping trips. Inevitably you want to use the fast or quick checkout lane that has a finite number of items you can check out. There they are, the idiot with a cart full of groceries checking out ahead of you when you have 1 item in your hand. I just wish they had a line Nazi that would verbally and physically abuse you for being a truly selfish bastard! Maybe a person goose-stepping you in the ass would teach you to use the proper line. Then we have the people who buy an entire cart full of groceries and do not have enough money or food stamps to pay for everything and they have 1 item at a time removed from their total to reach what they can pay for. Meanwhile the other consumers waiting in line are becoming mummified, reaching retirement age and discovering if there is an afterlife. Almost everyone has a card you need to get their everyday low price or some other card to get some bonus on. They even give coupons that unless used within 2 days are invalid. I just bought groceries, how about making them valid for a week or so when I will be buying more groceries at my favorite place to visit. The ATMs have become much more complex asking a plethora of questions such as â€œWhat is your sexual preference?â€ to â€œDo you always dress like that?â€ Then you have 461 ways of paying. In poor areas of town the â€œBloodâ€ option is very popular. The last time I checked out I actually saw an option for launching small scale thermonuclear devices. This is getting too damn intrusive and complicated and does NOT let me chose the target!
When asked do I want paper or plastic, I always ask for paper bags IN plastic bags. This way I am an environmentalist and a scum at the same time. I give them to my neighbor who is a hoarder and I predict by the end of this year, he will not be able to move through the house. I also contribute newspapers to the cause as well as used cat litter.
Well, I race past the person wanting to sign a petition at the exit door to ban dihydrogen monoxide from our community. Do I have the heart to tell the idiot that he wants to ban water? NO! Pack up the food and drive on home. As I put the food stuff into their proper place, I look forward to the next trip to one of my favorite of places, the grocery store.