Thursday, July 24, 2008

How to accumulate trash while grocery shopping

(You must have a boy toddler and another boy who acts like one.)

1. Push your cart within fifty feet of the deli counter. That's all it takes for said boys to notice it and start screaming "I want a piece of cheese!" (Say "Can everyone just be quiet please?" and sorta smile as the little one whispers "Can I have a piece of cheese?") And I'd like to go on record here: I did not, on my first grocery store visit with the boys, sidle up to the deli counter and ask the deli worker for a sample piece of cheese for each boy. The DELI WORKER offered it. And since my boys never forget someone who gives them food they like, they now ask for it every time we visit the store. So don't blame me if you're spending a fortune giving away free cheese, deli worker. You started it.

2. Get them their cheese sample, which comes wrapped in a piece of tissue, and when they've eaten the cheese, wad the tissue up and stuff it between the bars on the cart (since grocery stores do not have trash cans ANYWHERE. Unless you're in a Super Wal-Mart, and you aren't).

3. Fill your cart about half full, leaving no room in the bottom of it for a gallon of milk (even though you really need two). PLEASE, grocery store designers, would it kill you to move Dairy closer to the front of the store, i.e. earlier in my shopping trip? Realize that the only place for the milk is next to the littlest toddler in the front of the basket. Threaten him nicely at least ten times not to touch the milk. Get comfortable in the fact that you have gotten your point across. Listen to him say "okay" and watch him happily turn his attention to the Lunchables in the cart.

Then turn your head for a millisecond.

Listen to him say "it's milk, Mommy." Be thankful you are in the furthest corner of the store in Frozen Foods by the organic section where no one ever goes. Get your edamame out of the freezer and into your basket with the speed of a big cat. Then take a look at the gallon of milk, whose lid is awkwardly tilted. The gallon is now 7/8 of a gallon, the other eighth having dribbled down over the groceries in the cart and onto the floor.

Take a deep breath and head to the meat section, which is the only place in the entire store where they have paper towels (and I'm not buying them). Tear off seven towels and start wiping down milk-coated groceries. They also have produce plastic bags; grab one, stuff in paper towels and oh, while I'm at it gimme those little cheese papers.

4. Take a look at your wadded up, milked up grocery list, wad it up even more, and stuff it into the bag with the milk, the cheese papers, and the paper towels. And that in-store coupon you got for hotdogs. Its 55 cents is slowly losing its value.

Tell a stockboy guy about the little present you left him in Frozen Foods and breathe a sigh of relief at how kind he is to you.

5. Get to the checkout, where you know they at least have a tiny office-sized trash can under each register. Without saying anything, invade the checker's space and stuff your bag into already-overflowing trash can.

6. Get out of the store and try to figure out a way to strap your own trash bag on the cart for next time.


Chilihead said...

I'm sure it sucked at the time, but it made a great blog post. ;)

Anonymous said...

That was awesome!!!! :) LOL

Anonymous said...

Christine, that was hilarious!

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of the time when I was little and crashed the grocery cart into a pyramid of glass Scope mouthwash bottles and broke everyone of them. Thought I was in for it but Mom didn't even get mad!