There’s no rush.You can take your time. You can browse the different olive oil selections and contemplate the metaphysical difference between virgin and extra virgin. If you like, you can exchange witty and jovial banter with the food samplers. The options are ridiculously limitless.
With young kids? The grocery store is like walking a tight rope with a dirty bomb strapped to your back. There’s a rhythm and if you or your spouse dilly-dally in the cereal section over Honey Bunches of Oats and Honey Bunches of Oats and Nuts, then things can unravel quickly.
And before you build a mental image of what I’m talking about, in terms of a grocery store, I’m not talking about Wal-Mart. That place is the wild west of personal conduct and hygiene. You could write a dystopian novel set in Wal-Mart and never leave the home and gardening section.
Anyways, the grocery store. Alone it can be so wonderful. Sterile lighting, 68 degrees, unimposing contemporary artists like Gavin DeGraw or John Mayer soundscaping your atmosphere. So nice.
But it never is. It never, ever is. Why? Because of humanity that’s why.
That 20% has no idea how to conduct themselves. They spill coffee on themselves and sue the coffee maker. They eat Cheeseburgers dipped in ranch everyday for lunch and sue the restaurant because they grew a fourth chin. They pee in the municipal lazy river and sue the city because of urine content in the lazy river.
The Oblivious Obstructor
Nothing makes me want to punch a hole in the sky like these people. They stand in the middle of the aisle staring blankly at the different kind of Cheezits and dam up the flow of traffic while they fixate on the ever-so-important dilemma of white cheddar, vs. hot and spicy.
Me wearing my headphones at the grocery store is a similar idea to a peacock preening; we both want something. The peacock wants a mate and I want everyone to leave me the junk alone. But still there’s ALWAYS the person who wants to talk despite my headphone/tailfeathers.
(A distant relative of the oblivious Obstructor.)
Oh SNAP! You live in the same small town and you’ve randomly bumped into each other? Que fantastica! That’s so random and raven but that’s also what happens when your town has a population of 55 people.
But, hey, whatever works. Talk until that 2% milk you have in your cart curdles – I truly do not care. But please please PLEASE, GET OUT OF THE WAY. Your conversation does not supercede humanity’s need to navigate the rest of the store.
If need be, I will careen into you like a bowling ball into a fresh rack of pins. Nobody gets in between me and my Donut House coffee K-Cups. NO ONE.
The BlueTooth Shopper
We get it! You work with meat all day and absorb testosterone through osmosis. It’s all sciency and junk. But PLEASE don’t yell at me from 200 yards away about trying the low sodium roast beef.
How about you do you and slice the meat and I’ll do me and listen to This American Life to find out what the hipsters are into? Ok? Ok.
I get it. You are in a sanctuary of food so you want to bust into those powdered donuts. I CAN’T DISPUTE YOUR REASONING. But know this: it’s kind of a social faux pas. Do I wish that I could eat while I shop? YES. I would eat barbecue ribs sans wetwipes while I shopped if I could. But society has conditioned that possibility into oblivion. Thanks again for that, society.
A few years ago, I was at Wal-Mart with my friend Mark and this was one of those Wal-Marts with a McDonalds inside it. Before we started shopping, Mark was really hungry so he ordered some food and ate while we shopped. And even among the hillbillies and hogmollies of southeastern TN, he was getting some strange looks. And these are the people that populate peopleofwalmart.com.
Evidently, unless you are 3 or younger, eating while shopping is like cannibalism; across class and culture, it is frowned upon.
What types of people at the grocery store did I forget?