So this morning I set out to visit Fry’s (a giant supermarket-cum-Target sorta store) and Costco, whereinat to get…
Pick up new glasses
Reload the cash card with next month’s budget for CC purchases
possibly a new whiteboard
1 small bath rug
1 long-sleeved shirt, red
$80 in walkin’-around money
Sounds pretty easy, doesn’t it?
The Fry’s is on the way to the Costco.
They do have bath rugs…in eye-popping hideous colors. Okay, I knew it would be hard to get a pale purple (we mean “lavender”) rug in an era when the couleurs du jour are battleship gray, eye-searing white, and crudely produced teal. But…jeez.
Rubbing alcohol: that’s a Costco purchase: I can get two bottles for little more than one would cost at a regular retailer, and since I use the stuff liberally in the making of window and tile cleaner, Costco is the desired vendor.
Chocolate chips: no problem, though they’re running low on the favored fancy varieties because of the holiday.
Shirt in the desired color: not a freakin’ CHANCE! Reference the colors of 2018, above. Ugh.
Turtle wax: nope. Any number of other car polishes, but no Turtle wax. Car polish is not what I want. What I want is effin’ carnauba wax (which is what Turtle wax is) with which to renew the aging surface of my beloved office whiteboard.
Dog food: noooo problem.
We come away with one package of dog food and a bag of bird seed that we happened upon, offered at a price that puts Walmart to shame.
That was it. Yes. One (1) item of the six things we went in there for. SO PISSED WAS I, between not being able to find 99.8 percent of the things I needed and getting behind some broad in the fast-service line who decided, as I pushed my cart up to the cashier’s conveyer belt, that she just had to run all the way back to the far south wall of the store to pick up something she’d forgotten, THAT I forgot I needed to extract a little cash. So…what we have here is a fuckin’ waste of my time. Of the first water.
And so, away!
Heading catty-corner across the gigantic eight-lane intersection to the Bed Bath & Beyond, I dodge effing entitled rich people every inch of the way and risk my life to get into the effin’ parking lot.
Into the BB&B, a kind of Magical Mystery Wonderland for the housewife and the homeowner.
Yeah. Yep. They had the desired lavender bath rug: Twenty-six dollah and change. Add the tax (10% here in lovely uptown Arizona) and it would come to something over $30.
For a shower mat.
Don’t think so, White Folks.
At Costco I retrieved the new Rx shades — having prepaid, it was just a matter of asking. BUT…contrary to past practice, staff there refused to reload my cash cards at the service desk. They instruct me to go through one of the checkout lines to get that done.
You understand: the parking lot is SO JAMMED that I had to park in the Penney’s lot to deposit my car and then hike hundreds of yards to get into the goddamn Costco. This means the lines at the checkout stands are halfway back to the meat department.
“Thank you,” say I. “I’ll do my shopping someplace else.”
So I figure the Home Depot on the way back toward the ‘Hood will have the carnauba wax. And the Walmart will have the rubbing alcohol. These are the only two sorta urgent items on the list. (I really, really do want to repair and resuscitate the beloved whiteboard!)
Cruising into the HD parking lot (some miles — read, “quite a few miles, in the context of a city”) — I’m reminded that an Auto Zone resides there. Hot dayum!
Park, go inside. I know they have Turtle wax there (I’ve bought Turtle wax at auto stores before), but of course can’t find it. The two (count’em, two) staffers are occupied at the customer service/checkout desk, serving (if you can imagine!) customers. The guy in front of me is trying to buy and install a spark plug, but he has a little problem: he knows NOTHING about spark plugs. The CSR is trying to instruct him, right down to showing him how to apply a pair of pliers.
Oh. Dear. God.
I wait and wait and wait and wait and wait and wait and wait and wait and finally break one of the two staff folks loose. This person instantaneously produces the desired can of Turtle wax, giving me an escape from a frustrating expedition across the parking lot at the Home Depot.
Filled with great joy, I proceed to the Walmart.
Searching for the rubbing alcohol, I discover — did you know this??? — that Walmart’s pharmacy shuts down over the lunch hour on weekdays.
Follows, doesn’t it?
Their clientele in that hardscrabble neighborhood includes not just the usual crew of welfare, Medicare, and Medicaid recipients, but a fair number of actual working stiffs. You know: the sort of folks whose jobs require them to freaking BE THERE to collect their piddling hourly pay. Which in Arizona, a right-to-work-for-nothing state, you may be sure is piddling. Right. This requires them to do their shopping for prescriptions during the lunch hour or — their only choice, if the shop at Walmart — after a long day’s work.
Not that it mattered to me. It was just a subject of astonishment.
Moving on: I do find the rubbing alcohol, very cheap. Very pleased. And over on the other side of the store, I find a different variant of alcohol, which as you may have surmised by now, I also purchased.
Bogle. Best cheap wine on the market.
So now I’ve blown the whole goddamn morning, I’m half-starved, and I’ve accomplished almost nothing of the chores I set out to accomplish.
Since that was how my day had gone, can you guess what happened next?
No, I did NOT crash any of my fellow homicidal drivers on the way home, or run over any of the locals’ small children as the little creatures played in the street. For that we may be grateful to God and to ingrained suspicion.
Now I get home and haul the junk out of the car and…and…find Cassie the Corgi. One of her hind feet is encased in petrified dog shit, cemented with a skiff of quarter-minus.
This, I did not see before I left home. But since she couldn’t have gotten outside to embellish her new boot with gravel while I was gone, she must have accomplished it before I left, and I must not have noticed.
My poor little dog.
This stuff has turned to concrete. But that has not stopped her from pissing all over the house. Luckily, she’s confined her pissing to the large incontinence mats I’ve thrown down in her favorite pissoires and shittoires. So it’s fairly easy to pick up. Damn good thing I acquired another Lifetime Supply of the things at Walmart yesterday.
I cannot wash or scrape said concrete off her little foot and hind end.
So I have to find a large cap of a large jar — thank goodness for Little Old Lady habits that do not allow one to throw away a container, no matter how much space it occupies — fill it with warm water spiked with Dawn, and force her to sit still long enough to soak the stuff off her foot. This is a trick, but fortunately (??) she’s too ill to put up much of a fight. Manage to soak and scrub her more or less clean. Fill up the garbage cans with incontinence mats and brown wet paper towels. Feel very, very happy for Bogle Vineyards.
Get onto Amazon and look up purple bath mats. And by God, there it is! Yeah. There it is. For about 1/3 the price Bed Bath & Beyond expects to collect.
How do these stores stay in business at all? Even if I had to pay for the delivery (which I do not), it would still come to less than BB&B was charging. And it’s exactly what I want. Not approximately what I want.
And that’s how my day has gone.