Ok, I have a confession to make.
I have a very real and tangible fear of going grocery shopping. I always put it off as long as I can until I can’t subsist on the scraps in the pantry any longer. Most time I have to force myself into going because my desire to eat finally outweighs the fear but some days are worse than others.
Some days I get in the car after work with the plan that I need to grab some groceries on the way home, only to start the car and say “Nope” and just drive home.
So what exactly am I afraid of? What has the ability to leave me so paralysed with fear that I refuse to do something as simple as grocery shopping even if I desperately need to shop so I have food at home?
Yep. I’m convinced that some people have zero ability to be able to walk into a grocery store and not completely act like there aren’t any other people there. In fact their stupidity seems to start as soon as they get into the carpark.
How bloody inconsiderate to you have to be that you stand there with your door open, chatting to someone, and as I start to pull into the spot next to your vehicle you do nothing to move, even though you’ve seen me there waiting? Then after I wait 20 seconds out of courtesy (I know it was 20…I counted…slowly) and you’ve still made no attempt to move you get upset when I beep my horn?
And then you have the audacity to proceed to claim that I should learn to be more patient claiming you “were only going to be another minute”? WTF!?!? There’s cars lining up behind me and I can’t back out or go forward any further to let them past until you close your door and you want me and the several cars behind me to wait even longer so you can finish your chat! Close the bloody door and then chat as long as you want! Have some basic consideration for other people FFS!
Geez…I haven’t even gotten inside and already I’m being bombarded by stupidity? My head’s starting to hurt. Bugger this I’m turning around and going home…no wait…I’m hungry and my ribs are starting to show so I need to go in and get some food.
Dammit! Alright…breeeeathe. Time to man up…LETS DO THIS!
So I eventually get out of the car after prying my hands from their death grip on the steering wheel and make my way inside. But I find myself walking very slowly because I’m stuck behind two people who are slowing everyone else down by walking side-by-side so that no-one can get past in either direction. Of course they’re chatting away oblivious to anyone else so, short of pushing past them or asking them to move, the rest of the banked up shoppers and myself just take it in stride getting slowly more frustrated…but the door is in sight so I just grit my teeth and try to think happy thoughts…
Now, I just need to grab a trolley and get this over with as quickly as possible. First stop, fruit and veg. Oh FFS! I haven’t even gotten five bloody steps into the store and someone is standing in the middle of the isle chatting away oblivious to the fact that there are other people trying to get past them.
I’m not taking the long bloody way around so I politely ask if I could get by with a quiet and gentle “excuse me”. But I nearly lose my shit when they look down their nose and give me a “how dare you” look. You know the one, like I just walked into their socialite meeting wearing pluggers and a “wife-beater” singlet and asked “where’s the beer?”
Stay calm…happy thoughts.
People that know me understand that I like kids. I really do. I seem to be able to relate to them on their level quite easily, which probably has something to do with having a similar mindset. And I do remember what utter little shits we could be when my brothers and I were young so I try and be as tolerant as I can.
But there is a level of misbehaviour from some feral little kids where my blood pressure starts to boil. What makes it worse is I see their parents looking at them adoringly with smiles on their faces while their little terrors proceed to run up and down the aisles, screaming at the top of their lungs and knocking things off the shelves.
I did however get a little bit of joy from slipping a pack of condoms into their shopping trolley as a little friendly symbolic suggestion.
And it’s wash rinse and repeat as I go up and down the aisles. More people not aware that other people can’t get past if they stand next to their trolleys and stare blankly at the stuff on the shelves. More screaming kids and another condom packet slipped into another unsuspecting couple’s trolley.
The end is in sight. The checkout awaits and thankfully the queues are short so I feel like it will soon be over. I take a quick glance over the quantity of items in each of the other shopper’s trolleys and make an estimated guess that line A could potentially move a little faster than line B. It’s a guessing game really so I’m not too upset if it takes a little longer in one versus the other.
Just as I’m about to reach line A the bloke at the end of line B quickly jumps queues and cuts in front of me. Hey, no problem. I’ve put up with much worse today and even if it was bit of a dick thing to do, that’s quite a minor irritation in the scheme of things. The ordeal is nearly and there’s still about the same in both so I make my way to the end of line B, happy to be a step closer to leaving.
So I wait patiently for my turn, start loading my stuff onto the conveyor when I’m able, making sure not to crowd the elderly lady in front of me. I mean that’s the courteous thing to do right? I even offer to help lift the heavy carton of soft drinks onto the conveyor for her (hey I’m a nice guy).
My turn and things are progressing smoothly…until the guy behind me impatiently pushes his trolley within millimetres of me while I’m standing there paying for my groceries. I could feel the trolley brushing my leg. I look at him incredulously and ask him “You right there mate?” He honestly has no idea what I’m talking about. So I slowly look down at my legs, then slowly to his trolley and then back to him. He still has no idea that his trolley is up against my leg so I let it go.
I’m sure it would be like trying to explain manners and personal space to a monkey. Actually he looked like his lineage wasn’t that far removed from the apes so perhaps I would have gotten through to him if I’d offered him a banana.
I feel like its déjà vu as I make my way out of the store behind two people walking slowly side-by-side. But then I get to my car to see the lady who was in front of me, the one who I helped with her carton of soft drink, loading her groceries into the car next to mine. Yep the half-wit who was standing there with his door open was her husband waiting in the car while she did the shopping.
So he’s sitting there in the driver’s seat watching her load the groceries and I get there in time to again offer to help with the soft drink. She smiles and thanks me with old mate still sitting there watching us in the rear vision mirror saying nothing.
Geez I felt sorry for that nice old lady being married to a grumpy inconsiderate prick like that. I wonder if I should have slipped some condoms into her trolley to give her the hint that she should give the old bloke a root to help him loosen up a bit.
I know I’m always happier after a root…I think. It’s been a while so I might be remembering it wrong…