Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Mean Old Cart Lady

Ok, I like to post in order...and I'm breaking my own rule, but I just needed to go ahead and post about our adventure in the grocery store this afternoon! (And not to worry, I have a very good explanation of why I haven't posted in three weeks! That will come in another post...later.)

Here's the breakdown:
• first MW grabs a tomato from the BOTTOM of the stack....rollin' rollin' rollin'....almost all over the floor of the produce section.
• little miss just starts putting items in the cart...the danger of allowing a four year old to "walk beside the buggy"
• next I got talked into spending $4 on cheese cubes...first MW asked and made a decent case, then T3 starts chanting "cheese, cheese, cheese" from the buggy....cheese it is!
• then we pass by the lobsters and we just HAVE to stop and see them. MW, who is usually quiet and soft spoken is rather loud in describing them and how DANGEROUS they are and that "she just cannot believe it in her heart that they will pinch people!" (All of this is said loud enough that the guy stocking the meats has ceased stocking and is eyeing us and laughing...) Meanwhile T3 is pecking at the glass and making grunting sounds.
• next we head for the frozen veggies, but MW HAS to pick up some cotton candy (and beg for it). "No." She puts it back and knocks down the neon pink sign for cotton candy, complete with purple plastic big deal. We put it back up and move on.
• then we see, hmmm, we'll call him John Doe (though if you recall an earlier post about MW's "boyfriend," this would be the same guy) and MW runs to him and stands there awkwardly, like, "aren't you gonna at least hug me?" When John Doe does nothing but smile at her, she reaches for his hand and kisses it and then runs back to the buggy, red faced! John Doe's Mom says, "oh, how sweet." Great, we're getting a reputation!
• then we pick up a plastic can of orzo (for this yummy soup I'm trying to replicate...) and I let T3 hold it...mistake! He chunks it and the top breaks...oh we're FOR SURE buying it!
• then we pass by the books and MW has to "oooo" and "ahhhh" over every book and animal magazine, etc.
• finally, FINALLY, we round the corner for the final push, the home stretch, passing by all the tables of brownies, etc. to get in line and pay...but alas, there's a little old lady, actually, she was probably in her early sixties (wait, at the check out I heard her say she was born in 42 - she had to give than info to get her senior citizen's discount, that makes her 66, right?), sitting in one of those store provided electric wheelchair buggies, arguing with her husband, who has already paid for his cake.

This is where the bullets must stop and the story must be told...Here we are, stuck behind her. There's no getting around thanks to those tables and her large cart...and she's going at it with her husband, who, by the way, is carrying THREE purses. He's angry with her because she didn't have the right flavor of ice cream and she's telling him to get his own ------- ice cream and I'm thinking, "really, do you really need to do this in public? In front of my FOUR year old???" So I'm patient, waiting, waiting, waiting. I make some noise, move a little, like, hint, hint, move out of the way. Well, they just keep arguing and finally as she begrudgingly moves herself forward, as if we inconvenienced her, and forward, not so that we could get around her, but forward so that we could be behind her in line, she and her husband continue to argue and finally he tells her he just might "fix things so this will be your last trip to the grocery store ever." Hmmm...whatever that means??? (Can you believe this! - Oh wait, we're depraved sinners, so I guess it is believable...)

So we're in line and oh, John Doe is in front of mean old cart lady. MW asks permission to say "bye" to him. I feel a bit hesitant, as she's got to scoot around mean old cart lady, but I gave her permission. She approaches John Doe and they throw their arms around one another and she skips back to my side.

John Doe and his mom finish paying and mean old cart lady drives forward.

"This senior citizens day?" she barked.
"Yes ma'am."

Nothing...we wait...nothing.

MOCL: "Well?"

Grocery Clerk: "Yes Ma'am?"

MOCL: "Aren't you gonna unload my cart?"

Ok, wait a second...that, THAT was RIDICULOUS!!!! She could have SO EASILY unloaded that cart, or her husband could have. After all, he was standing beside the ice cooler watching this all unfold.

So the grocery clerk makes her way around, she's polite about it, and she begins unloading the few items MOCL has. Somehow as the grocery clerk is unloading MOCL's basket, a small can of hungry jack biscuits popped open. Well, oh my! You'd have thought she broke a tray of irreplaceable crystal. MOCL demanded that the clerk go immediately and get her another can of biscuits...

Then MOCL's husband starts fussing at the clerk. That poor girl. She was more than kind and gracious.

Please keep in mind that this was supposed to be a ten minute grocery run for a few items...we were in there for roughly forty-five minutes! Thankfully MW's music teacher was behind us and that kept MW occupied for the most part. T3 was growing restless. MW moved between my buggy and the conveyor belt. And then...mean old cart lady slammed that blasted cart into REVERSE and FLOORED it! I am so thankful those carts make a beeping sound when they back up, or well, it just might've been really ugly. I shouted and jumped back, the buggy slammed into me and miraculously MW was spared. She got a little bump from the buggy, but that was it. Thanks to my motherly instincts, I'd switched buggies earlier so T3 could be buckled. He got mild whip-lash, and thought the whole thing was just great! The most fun he'd had all day!

When you mix embarrassment with a woman who's already audibly fought with her spouse, who's fussed and just been a pain to the clerk, a woman who is clearly, without a doubt a real stinker, it's just not pretty. We did not receive any type of apology, merely a "anybody hurt?" growl of sorts, and then her husband fussed at her and put his cake in her cart. I thought about joking about a possible law suit, but decided it wasn't really very appropriate given her temperment. It wouldn't have mattered much had I joked, 'cause she put that thing in gear and floored it forward and right out the door!

As I eased my way to the front of the line I burst into laughter. Unbelievable! And what a sweet clerk! To put up with such absurdities! She seemed nearly in tears and blurted out, "I hate waiting on them. I've already had a bad day." Together we laughed about things.

MW wanted to walk beside the buggy on our way out to the car. No way! After being run over with an electric wheelchair cart, I'm not taking my chances with my little MW and MOCL , who I just knew was out there somewhere, behind the wheel of a car!

1 comment:

  1. Hilarious... I know it wasn't funny at the time but this story made me crack up. Why do old people have to be so cantankerous?! I talked to someone on the phone yesterday and she wasn't old but she was SO rude and so not nice. I wanted to say, "excuse me, do you know Jesus?" Her voice was filled with such rage and her tone was so short and annoyed with me... and her job was a "customer service rep"... she apparently didn't have a one on one interview. Glad y'all survived! I can't wait to see pictures from your adventure!!