Tag Archives: shopping

I’m Going To The Grocery Store

Can you see me? Click to enlarge. Source: Wikipedia.

Can you see me? Click to enlarge. Source: Wikipedia.

I’m going
I’m going
I’m going
To the grocery store!

They got edible cactus in a jar
Mixes and accessories for my bar
Breakfast cereal that comes in a box
Bagels, cream cheese and even the lox
Fruits thoughtfully sealed inside of wax
Winged feminine products sold in packs
Only forty-two varieties of Wheat Thins
Toilet paper with gels squirted in
Everything you ever needed and more
You’ll find it all at the grocery store!

A wise woman once said, “I learned a hard lesson this day. … [N]ever and I repeat NEVER EVER take Tom shopping again!!!” This person was my wife of two years ago. Not my wife of today. Apparently the two have never met.

Our story begins and ends in a grocery store…
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Priced as marked

price“This post doesn’t have a price tag? It must be free, right? Ha ha ha ha ha ha!”

In response, the Abyssian customer service associate doesn’t lose his shit and calmly points at the the wall. “Clearly you did not see our sign.” It reads:

“The next customer to crack the ‘it must be free’ joke on an unmarked item will be stabbed in the eye. Thank you for shopping Abyss Inc.”
–Our humorous sign (patent pending)

And no, this post is not free. By reading this far, per our implied EULA buried on some other page you’ve never visited, you already owe me $2.99. I’d immediately quit reading if I were you.
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Apple Bamboo

iphone-jerkWe recently hosted a quasi-invited guest. (She sort of invited herself. It was a Thanksgiving kind of thing.) We took this person downtown for shopping, out to dinner and put her up for the night. But this guest wasn’t alone. She was possessed of an uninvited interloper. It was an iPhone.

Introducing the “bamboo” sound.

DA-DA DA-DA DINT DA! Thwap!

The sound was a lot like that coffee commercial jingle only a lot more woody, with a strong, robust finish. It was like Juan Valdez had chugged too much tequila and was getting jiggy on the marimbas.

DA-DA DA-DA DINT DA! Thwap!

That sound haunts me. It chases me in my dreams, where it is the size of the Death Star and I’m running but making no progress. “The rebel base will be in range in 15 minutes.” Only, in this dream, there was no Luke Skywalker to eject a torpedo pulse into a tiny little hole and save the day. The floating space-suited black helmet dudes fired that sucker and blew me and my planet up. And guess what? The sound the Death Star beam made? It was the iPhone bamboo.
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Black Friday Deals Week

montoyaBusinesses are out promoting and conducting “Black Friday” sales more than a week before Thanksgiving?

Inconceivable!

Black Friday is, by simple definition, the day after Thanksgiving. It is decidedly not the day before. It is not an entire weekend. And, in the name of Zeus’ butthole, it is not the entire third week of November.

Your attempts to redefine the day to satisfy your own insatiable greed is crass and immoral. You know, contrary to that whole Christmas spirit thing which is, if you think about it, the real reason for the season.

I’ve often thought about taking a crack at the retail game myself. My spin would be to insult the fuckshit out of my customer. Yeah, I think that is the approach that would work for me. My style would be loosely based on Dick’s Last Resort Restaurant only on steroids and much more likely to cause my clientele to break out the nunchakus.

bananaInstead of a button on my website called “Place Your Order” my checkout would say something different. “Idiot Want Stuff?” is a top contender. Or, perhaps, “Monkey want banana? Monkey see button. Monkey push button! Monkey get banana.”

Mmm, mmm! Banana!

My store would have a “no bullshit” policy. For example, “If we say it’s in stock, go ahead and push button, monkey. We have it. If not, we’ll give you the motherfucker for free. That’s our no bullshit guarantee.”

The point is, at least I’d be insulting you to your face with dignity, honor, style and grace. I wouldn’t do it like all sneaky subversive like the rest of those namby pamby “Black Friday” giants like Walmart, Best Buy, Kmart, JC Penney, Old Navy, etc. Big box? That’s what we’ll need to bury them in, yo.

Just remember that from the moment they’ve attempted the Black Friday gambit they’ve already insulted you right to you face. And you lap it up like Babe being led to the bacon farm.

I decided to run some more of their bullshit through the universal translator to find out what these stores really think about the marks, fish and dupes who decide to go shopping in the hollow halls. This is all part of my commitment to edification of you, the lowly loyal reader.
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Because You Ask

krugeBecause you ask, the answer is no. This is a friendly cousin of an old favorite, “Because, you wish it!” which I picked up from a happy-go-lucky Klingon Commander in the movie Star Trek III: The Search For Spock.

It’s a simple policy I find to be remarkably effective.

For a limited time, I’ll explain how it works.

Step 1: Find someone to ask you for something. This usually isn’t too hard.

Step 2: Say “no.” The phrase “Because, you wish it!” is optional but provides a certain undeniable flair.

If you can’t find someone to ask for something, try going grocery shopping. 99% of the time (or so I theorize) the amount of your purchase will contain a fractional amount of dollars. (I’m in cents about that.) That’s when the happy-go-lucky clerk will loudly ask, for all to hear:

You’re not such a selfish sack of shit that you’re unwilling to “round up” for charity, are you? Huh, huh, huh? Greedo! I must be Han Solo because I’m firing first. I dare you to say no. It’s for “charity” and that’s always good, right? Am I right or am I right?

Listen, fuck face. I’m doing you a courtesy by shopping in your establishment. And you respond to that by trying to guilt me into some action that will ultimately make you look good?

roundupI decided the best course of action is to carry an actual bottle of Roundup® Weed Killer on my belt. (Who says Monsanto can’t be handy?) When some snot nose practitioner of psychological warfare asks me if I want to “round up” I’ll happily reply, “Don’t mind if I do!” and spray that shit right in their face.

Human acute toxicity is dose related. Acute fatal toxicity has been reported in deliberate overdose. Epidemiological studies have not found associations between long term low level exposure to glyphosate and any disease.

Based on an assessment completed in 1993 and published as a Reregistration Eligibility Decision (RED) document, the EPA considers glyphosate to be noncarcinogenic and relatively low in dermal and oral acute toxicity. The EPA considered a “worst case” dietary risk model of an individual eating a lifetime of food derived entirely from glyphosate-sprayed fields with residues at their maximum levels. This model indicated that no adverse health effects would be expected under such conditions.

In June 2013, the Medical Laboratory in Bremen published a report that glyphosate was present in human urine samples from 18 European countries. Malta showed the highest test results with the chemical showing up in 90% of samples and the average for all countries was 43.9%. Diet was stated as the main source.

Thanks for the assist, Wikipedia! :)

It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it. “Won’t you round up that wee bit for charity?” That sounds a lot nicer than the reality: “Gimme some arbitrary amount of your cash for our cause that you know nothing about. Our admin costs are only 98%. Ha ha ha!”

Or, worse: “We’ll use this money to fight against you, your core beliefs, and every cultural warfare front on which you stand opposed.” On second thought, maybe I shouldn’t be shopping at Chick-Fil-A and/or the Boy Scouts after all.

What’s wrong with asking for a little charity? Mainly that it makes it your decision and not mine. What could possibly be wrong with that? Only that I have absolutely no idea what my money will be used to support. Duh.

Recently a dude came to my door and asked for marriage equality support. That’s one of my pet causes. I gladly told him we already signed the petition when we enjoyed a “free” concert in the park. (Ha!) He said, “That’s great. I also need $60.”

“I don’t know who the hell you are.” Worse, the dude was a paid canvasser. Bothering me in my own home was his job. Somehow that rubs me the wrong way. It’s feels like spraying Monsanto on those alleged grass roots.

Long story short, me and the dude had a 45-minute conversation on my front porch and we connected. I ended up violating my own rule and giving him the oddly specific amount of $60. It didn’t hurt that this was a cause I believe in. What can guru say? Guru is often too nice.

A few weeks later, though, come to find out there are two different groups operating in the state, ostensibly for the same overall goal, but employing differing and contradictory strategies. Holy crap. Which group did I agree with? Which strategy did I end up “voting” for with my money? Did I agree with it? Or was I on the wrong side?

This is why giving to charity should be an outgoing decision, never incoming. Ever. To choose to do so is akin to voluntarily flushing your money down a toilet. Or worse.

So sell me my groceries and shut the hell up. I got hit by enough beggars just by walking into your store. That should have been my first clue, I guess.

IKEA wouldn’t want to BEYA

ikiea-st-helensOn Saturday, November 9, 2013, I visited an IKEA.

I have dubbed the trip Grouchy With A Chance Of Meatballs.

Per standard operating procedure I was lured into the midst via deception. “Let’s do brunch,” said my wife. Then, after my tummy was slaked and my attention wandered, suddenly our car was pulling into the gaping maw of Hell.

“What the Hell?” I stammered redundantly.

Yes, it was the IKEA super mega store on steroids. (I think they call them STOROIDS.) Lest there be any doubt: The “holiday season” is upon us.

Cars were flying in every direction. People were running and screaming. Their hair was on fire. Vendors were pumping out hot dogs. A dog barked. A garish clown on stilts juggled live babies. It was the peak hour of the peak day of the week and the peaking holiday season was upon us. And we were now in the epicenter where Swedish style and design meet in the supercollider of Want.

GRUNDTAL! You’re welcome.

Step one of shopping at IKEA is not navigating the labyrinth or even following your nose to the nearest deceptively aromatic meatball. No, before those phases may begin one must find a temporary storage location for one’s Volvo. I’m talking about, of course, the PARKERINGSPLATS.

But then, something unexpected happened. Call it a Hobbit’s journey, if you wish. I call it a Very Guru Christmas. It was time for a new Festivus tradition henceforth to be called the Random Act Of Kindness (To An Asshole).

For some it would be a confusing time.
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Everything with John

everything-saleI used to have a really good friend named John. (And yes, this one time, I’m using a real name.) I often wonder what happened to John. Please do not recommend that I use the internet to find him. Do you understand the futility of googling someone named John? Maybe I should hire Dawg the Bounty Hunter. Just don’t rough him up, okay? I want our reunion to be joyous.

Something happened yesterday that make me think of him. Then I felt sad that he still isn’t in my life. Big time. Cry.

The memory trigger was a tweet by one of the supremely important people I follow. (They are all important. Why else would I be following them?) It was a bit of humor about the classic “everything” sale where some items are excluded. See? That’s not “everything.” It’s just the kind of thing that would set John off.

The “everything” sale has feasted my soul for years. It must have been decades ago when I first became aware of this phenomenon. A department store (that used to exist at the time) had an “everything” sale. The fine print, of course, excluded things like: linens, housewares, electronics, automotive and jewelry.

I remember thinking: What the hell else is even left in that store? Certainly nothing I ever wanted.

My mind grappled with the illogic of it all. How, in the greatest country the world has ever known, can an advertiser come out and issue baldfaced lies in the name of profit? I assumed some government agency would swoop in like Inigo Montoya and say, “You keep using that word. I dunna think it means what you think it means. Prepare to die!”

But that never happened. A little naive innocence in your guru died that day. There is no truth fairy.

In that vein, I now present three short stories involving my friend John. Enjoy.
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