For some reason, Tam and I found ourselves doing what every other person does on a Saturday: we had to go to the store. Stores, actually, as our list of crap to deal with was longer than expected and required more than one stop. It’s the end of summer break and starting next week, we’ll be back at our jobs, Tam slinging food to the children, and me slinging whatever lessons I can come up with that will match their IEP’s and help the little darlings make their goals.
Our larder was rather bereft of foodstuffs for lunches, so the first place we planned to hit was the warehouse store for bulk items like tuna fish, bread, whatever.
Ok, let me back up a few days… We decided to end the summer with a last-minute visit to her mother’s cabin at the beach. We left her son to take care of the animals, while we attempted to rid ourselves of anxiety regarding the coming year. It was wonderful, but our timing was crap. We ended up in holiday traffic on the way home, and I’m nothing if not a tense, raving, foaming, ranting lunatic around stupid drivers, and there were several of them out on the roads.
So, while still not completely recovered from the ordeal of driving through all that stupidity, I again found myself behind the wheel of a lethal weapon as we headed out to deal with idiots.
We arrived at the warehouse store about an hour after the floodgates had opened and hell disgorged its contents into the parking lot. Deciding it would be best to not even attempt to find a spot that didn’t require a hiking permit and a supply of provisions, I took the easy way and hit the distant lot.
It was crowded, but only around my car, and only after I parked it. Plenty of spaces. I took one far from the other cars, so why did the idiot have to park next to me, then stand by my door while she argued on the phone with her husband? Because it was hell, and she was one of the residents.
We finally entered the store, grabbed a cart, and Og burst on the scene, insinuating in no uncertain terms that the woman we were now following, was a complete and utter moron. Og has very little volume control, but it didn’t matter. The noise level in that place was reaching airport proportions.
Taking Tam’s lead (mainly because she was pulling on the cart), we went in a different direction than the rude idiot, far from where we wanted to go, and took a nice saunter through Fool’s Land. Tam refused to allow me to push the cart alone, as she feared there would be bloodshed and sticky body parts stuck to the wheels of the shopping cart. They’re hard to push when there are things stuck to the wheels.
I did get one good one in, though, and it was appreciated by an employee. Some manager walked by the checkout stand we were in and barked out, “Mary! Over here, when you’re done.” As he walked by, I looked at him and said, “Please.” Mary gave me a smile that lit up the sky. Manager Dork didn’t get it. Oh, surprise.
Our next stop had only one incident, and I can’t be positive, but there are times I must trust my gut, and this was one of them. We were standing at the paint display when one of the clerks said to the other clerk, “Remember what I said earlier?” and I thought I saw the motion of a thumb cocked in our direction. Small stores in small towns can have some of the neatest people, you know?
Finally, we finished our big adventure at the regular grocery store. That place is once again in a state of upheaval while they remodel, so it takes us a little longer than usual to find what we want. Plus there’s that whole “List? What list? We don’t need no stinking list” mentality we have, which adds a good thirty minutes to every shopping trip. As we wandered alone through housewares, Tam said something and I replied with a kiss to the neck. This was done in an aisle where we were the only people around. I say that last part, because it is important. We were alone.
Until a guy in a turban comes up behind us, and stands there until I turned around. He stuck out his hand and said, “My name is John.” Reluctantly I shook his hand. Then he pointed at Tam, who was pointedly ignoring him, and asked, “this is…?”
“My girlfriend,” I said.
“Um, uh…ah… huh?” Maybe he didn’t understand that I mean girlfriend-girlfriend, and not just my BFF-girlfriend, because English was not his first language and there could have been some confusion. Or maybe he was just freaked out. He stood there for a few more minutes, before asking god’s blessing on us as he
This is not the first encounter I’ve had with evangelicals wandering our local markets, and I’m sure it won’t be the last. Eventually I’ll come up with a snappy retort, but for now that’s as good as it gets.
Our last stop in that store was to check out the latest paperbacks, just in case we were feeling richer than our school employee salaries allowed. Once again, WE WERE ALONE in the aisle, until we were joined by some guy who looked like he hadn’t seen the inside of a book cover since grade school. Even his wife looked a little startled that he chose that particular place to browse. As Tam and I moved down the aisle and away from him, he scooted our direction. I swear, if he’d said anything at all, I was gonna bash him with the cart. Or throw a book at him. Or use big words like, GET. THE. FUCK. AWAY. ASSHOLE.
It was a busy day. Tomorrow had better shape up, or I’ll give Og free reign and let the body parts fall where they may.