No blue light specials here


I made a major martial gaffe this past week.

My better half actually gave me the option of visiting — or not visiting — my favorite big box store so we could restock our larder.

And instead of saying no, I agreed to go — against my better judgment and apparently hers. Or perhaps it was a moment of sheer stupidity.

But I knew if I didn’t, it would be another checkmark on that list she keeps in which I don’t do anything to help out when it comes to shopping.

And I guess I thought maybe they had widened the aisles to boulevard width at the store everyone loves visiting since the last time I had ventured there for a major outing trip.

That notion, however, proved wrong, but I did learn some new things while on this latest visit.

For one thing, you can never go into this store and not find employees stocking shelves. Not on a busy Saturday morning or a busy weekday evening or even in the middle of the night. I guess that just demonstrates how quickly things fly off the shelves and into people’s cart.

I also learned that people feel it is perfectly OK to stand around and talk to others or talk on their cellphones and block the aisles while others are shopping. Either that or one young guy was having such a hard time making his cheese selection that he needed some help from an outside source.

Being the kindhearted person I am, I decided to let him continue to debate the merits of each type of cheese and check something else off my wife’s shopping list. But after circling around for a couple of laps, I returned to the cheese aisle and found someone else having trouble making their selection. Seeing all of this activity around the cheese section made me doubt myself and my ability to do this on my own.

I also learned that if you want to buy something small that has a price tag of more than $30 or so, you’re going to need to be ready to check out because it’s under lock and key and a store employee will be escorting you to the cash register to complete that purchase.

And back to the width of the aisles, I’ve also learned that no matter how wide you make them in this store, they are still not going to be wide enough to accommodate every shopper. Heck, you could make them wide enough to land a Boeing 757 and they still wouldn’t be wide enough.

While standing in the checkout line after the end of our 10-hour shopping marathon, my wife informed me she was actually hoping I would have picked the first option to begin with and decided to go home instead of shopping with her.

I’m not sure if it’s because of my impulse buys, my constant whining or she just didn’t want to spend time with such good company.

And $200 later, my wife told me it had probably been at least two months — if not three — since she had made a major shopping excursion to the store. That made me feel a tad bit better because I figured she had been spending that much every week or so at the store.

After piling all of those plastic bags in her vehicle and fighting through the traffic, we were free and clear — or so I thought.

As a reward, we decided to treat ourselves to getting carryout instead of cooking at home because of a job well done. But while visiting one of our favorite fast food joints, my evening didn’t get much better when I asked for one of my favorite desserts — the apple empanada — and learn they had recently been removed as a menu item.

Maybe I should never go shopping or eat out again.

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