if i ever lose it, i mean fully completely absolutely no doubtaboutit lose it, it’ll happen in the grocery store. what is it with the grocery store? no matter what mood i’m in when i hit the front door, by the time i hit it again i’m hanging on to sanity by one handle & there’s a big hole in the bottom of the bag. maybe it’s the subliminal whinefest of the muzak, which i’m sure is a well-researched whinefest indeed, designed to make ninety-nine % of the population buy shit they had no idea they wanted, while i, as always, inhabit that other %. or perhaps it’s the overwhelming bombardment of marketing messages, which taken as a whole take on a quality of desperation, triggering my codependent tendencies – could it be i feel bad about not buying the ninety nine thousand nine hundred forty seven things i don’t buy? and there’s no way to say there, there, i’d buy your cleverly packaged nonsense if … ok, i wouldn’t, but it’s not you it’s me, nice work though, *pat pat*. or it might be because i can never entirely remember all the reasons i’m there and so failure seems more or less inevitable – once for a month straight i forgot to buy butter. the toast sucked that month.

i mean, i don’t know if it’s just me — does everybody get asked by at least five different courtesy clerks in that earnest, courteous way they have, if i’m finding everything i need? or am i wearing an expression that screams helpme helpme heeeeelp me? and how exactly would i find what i need in the grocery store, when my needs are … aha! it’s the clerks. they should stop reminding me about my needs.

the clerks bagging at checkout are also the way i gauge the extent of the damage of any one shopping expedition – how many times do they ask me if i need help getting my poptarts, coffee creamer and tunafish to the car? once, ok. but if they ask me three different times, like, are you sure? obviously at that point i’m the walking wounded, and it shows.

today the clerk, who was 20 years my senior if a day, only asked me once. i can’t imagine having a working retiree carrying my groceries, but apparently the working retiree could.

really, i’m fine. but i sure wish that online grocery ordering service hadn’t gone under.

11 thoughts on “vonsophrenia

  1. Checking back in at my favorite Office Depot after making a foray to another to pick up something my favorite lacked, the manager asked me about how the customer service compared with her place (a bit laid back, but wonderfully attentive to even a raised eybrow).

    ‘Twas like being attacked by escapees from “The Hamster Dance”, was my reply.

    …and company rules prevent me from carrying while shopping. I’ve always thought that would help back off the ones who follow you around…

  2. i’ve always thought the O.D. hamsters were on commission or something.

    either that or these places do those morning motivation meeting things, where they torture and brainwash the young impressionable staff with little chants and songs to ask everysinglecustomer nomatterwhat andwhenindoubt askagain andagain

    they like, totally do that at wal-mart. i’ve job coached there. it’s friggin’ scary.

  3. …and I may have caught them right as they left their meeting just loaded to the gills on Starbucks!

    No kidding, the one dude vaulted the counter when he saw me come in the door. I mean, it was like I was customer 10,000,000,000 of something. …but when I didn’t see a new car, I figured it was just a medication error.

  4. they never had it in my area — but hey, when i don’t want to shop there’s always papajohns.com — ordering pizza online just rocks.

  5. I master the grocery store by a set of massive headphones (the big ones that cover your ear) wailing away on some obnoxious alt rock, the crazy way I steer my cart into everyone and everything too close to me, and a scowl the size of a small country.

    it works for me!

  6. oh i fix all that by stopping by the beverage aisle at least every 15 minutes. reading all those labels about how this wine goes best with that kind of pasta, or cracking open a newcastle (before buying it of course) and enjoying it while i wander down the vegetable row. i mean, what better way to shop than experiencing the bounty before you buy?

    p.s. i think vons still has the online/delivery gig.

  7. for me, it’s work. which is where i am right now. meltdown expected. the wheat is growing thin. etc.

    am investigating telecommuting options……………..

  8. i HATE the grocery store.. I’m not even kidding.. there’s just too. much. stuff. too much to choose from. 40 diff. brands of toothpaste?? And I saw some signs yesterday in the meat department. The little seperators from the various types of meat that read “not all beef is created equal” I shit you not. *shiver*

  9. I really HATE the grocery store. I usually only get asked about finding things once though, for which I am deeply thankful. But I still hate the grocery store trek – and am almost tearfully happy to know that there are others that feel the same. Too many choices, and I always forget what I really needed and lost my list and end up feeling very inept and harried.

    Meanwhile it’s restaurants that are hell of the Repeated Questioning for me.
    “How are we doing? You need anything? Anything I can get you? How’s your meal? Drink refill? Dessert?”
    Leave me alone! I just want to eat and perhaps have a conversation with someone else!!!!! Without being interrupted every 2 minutes! You’re getting a good tip! Now go away!
    Sorry, I guess I’ve been holding that in for a while….

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