Do you ever get in the grocery line to check out and look at what you have selected. Some days I feel pretty virtuous. Fresh lettuce, cucumbers, green beans, garlic. Fresh baked bread, chicken breasts and low fat milk. Maybe some melon or strawberries if they look good and are on sale. Yeah, I am the model shopper just by looking at what I am getting. Shouldn’t I get a medal or something for being so healthy and smart with my items?
Actually, it just balances out those times I look at what I am placing on that little conveyor belt and hope no one sees me. Oreos, tortilla chips and coke. Maybe those cinnamon rolls in a can and some chocolate milk, too, if I am feeling especially cocky. Do the checkers even think about these collections? Maybe in the beginning -- when they are trying to figure out how to put giant bag of chocolate bars with the chips and giant container of marshallow crème with the extra large bottle of laundry detergent – they scratch their head and wonder, “what is this person doing when they get home?” But, mostly I think they don’t even think about it and leave this pondering to the ones standing in line behind you.
Like me. We all type-cast shoppers, right? The “hippie-types” are probably buying soy milk and organic vegan hot dogs, while the teenagers are buying energy drinks and gum in space-themed wrappers. The well-dressed middle agers go for the nice bourbon and tiger prawns, while young couples nab the nacho cheese dip and wine in the box. Well, at least in my mind.
The other day, however, I noticed one shopper that really had me stumped. I was at the local drug store, which doubles as a liquor store and mini-mart, when I noticed the woman ahead of me with a cart full of stuff. The woman was probably in her 70’s anyway and pushed a cart overflowing with the strangest collection of good I had ever seen assembled. This tall, thin, somewhat frail looking elderly woman had the following things: A case of water. Check. Good, as most elderly do not drink enough and are usually dehydrated. Two packs of liquid supplement drinks. Check and also good. Easy nutrition she can just drink. Four packs of Red Bull (or equivalent) energy drinks. Check and whoa! I could not imagine what she would be doing with those energy drinks. She was barely moving with her cart, so, in fairness, maybe a shot of energy drink would put a little pep in her step! The kicker, however, was the final item… A giant bag of incontinence pads. In total, I was trying to imagine the intersection of these four items and thinking in some way, it made sense. Moving around with all that increase in nutrition and energy makes you thirsty and just in case you can’t make it to the bathroom, well, that’s what the pads are for!
I watched her pay and slowly push the cart out of the store. Go get ‘em, I heard myself say. She is prepared for something, or will be soon, and I’d really like to see how that all works out. But, for now, I critique my own shopping cart, divvying out accolades when warranted and hiding in the self-check lanes when I am not.
It’s been a funny couple weeks. And this just made it more fun.