Conspiracy or Coincidence?

This weekend I have come to realize that there is a great conspiracy afoot among the grocery stores in town to make my grocery excursions as painful as possible, for there is no possible other explanation for why I get the worst grocery cart possible, every single frikking time. There is no way it could happen so often and be random coincidence.

Invariably I start such excursions with the optimistic notion that, despite shopping after 4pm, I will get everything I came for in a timely fashion with a shopping cart in fine operational condition. Rarely does it happen this way.

First of all, both children are likely to be with me because, G*d love them, they haven’t seen me for 6 hours because I work at Job2 on Saturday mornings. Now this, in itself, is not necessarily a bad thing, but because of the hour and the lack of daytime Mom time, you can rest assured that there will be whining by my beloved children and their fun trip to the store is pretty much guaranteed to end with me muttering the sentence “You are N-E-V-E-R coming shopping with me again!”

Now when we enter the store, all will be well. We will find a cart that appears in fine working order, with no obvious bends or wobbles. The children will pile in the cart and we will commence down the fruit and vegetable aisles (which, given our family distaste for most things veggie, takes very little time actually). Around about the bakery, the front left tire will begin to sway. Steering said cart with 2 kids, bananas and bagels will become more awkward, and Rainbow & Dolittle will be evicted from their perch. Now the fun really begins.

One child will hang on my coat. Another will want to be the cart pusher. The swaying wheel, perhaps in protest to the entire scene, will sporadically lock every three feet. The cart will take on a mind of its own and undoubtedly run down some college kid shopping in their jammies, an old lady with a basket of prunes, and a display of canned spaghetti-o’s.

By the time we get to the frozen foods the wheel will permanently stop moving. This means that a) I could not be further from the cash, and b) now I have to P–U–S–H and D–R–A–G a full and resistant cart of groceries all the way to those same cash registers. And my darlings will STILL be hanging onto my coat and pleading to be the cart pusher (a job which would have been taken away sometime around the prune lady was sent flying).

When I finally get to the cash line-up I will be soaked in sweat from my fight with that dang cart, and I will undoubtedly have forgotten some key ingredient that made the grocery trip necessary in the first place. And just when I’m second in the line-up, Rainbow will look up at me with her big blue eyes and whisper, “Mommy, I have to pee. N-O-W!!!”

“Now?” I’ll ask with a look of panic.

She’ll squeeze her knees together and tell me she’s ok, but I’ll feel a wave of Mommy-guilt coming on anyway.

“Wiggle and dance to keep dry pants,” I’ll say, attempting to sound cheerful.

Then, of course, I will get the new cashier. If there is a cashier who hasn’t got a clue within 50 miles, that will be the check-out I choose. With awkward, painstaking slowness, Newbie will scan each item, calling their supervisor over for assistance ten times in the process.

Finally, when all is totalled, and it looks like Rainbow is about ready to explode, I will toss Newbie my money, yell “Parcel Pickup”, grab my kid, and run for the bathroom. As I glance over my shoulder, the guy from Parcel Pickup will invariably be steering THE VERY SAME frikking cart with one hand whilst humming a happy tune.

Random coincidence? I think not.


1 Response to “Conspiracy or Coincidence?”

  1. 1 djn February 8, 2006 at 2:34 pm

    Grocery shopping is the absolute pits. I really really hate it — even when I don’t have all 4 kids with me.

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