I am not sure what it is about men and grocery stores, but those long mysterious aisles seem to present a conundrum to a lot of men. Or maybe it’s just my husband.
I joke that his idea of Friday Night Date Night is taking me to the grocery store, where we spend ‘quality time’ together.
Me, pushing a buggy, weighing produce and wondering why they don’t put prizes in bran cereal for the grown-ups. For my husband it means disappearing to the magazines, where he stands, reading about guns or cycling.
Cole stays by my side, helping with the buggy duty until he spots a free sample, which if there’s a food sampling in a store, Cole will find it.
When I finally make my way to the check out, I am frantically searching for Lamar. Where is he? Why can’t I find him? He’s MIA, as usual. He somehow appears as soon as I head the buggy towards the door.
The festivities continue when we get home and I get to put up everything after he brings it in. He digs out the turkey and makes himself a sandwich to partake in the entertainment of me stacking cans of green beans and putting Eggos in the freezer.
Not my idea of a Friday Night Date Night exactly. I grit my teeth and feel my blood start to boil.
“You know, you could help me put these groceries up,” I mutter under my breathe to the back of his head.
“I don’t know where you want that stuff.”
That’s his excuse for not folding laundry, for not putting up the dishes – he doesn’t know where I want ‘that stuff.’
It’s not that hard to figure out. The canned goods are on one shelf, the cereal and breakfast food another. It’s not rocket science, it’s non-perishables.
I feel like my efforts are unappreciated. I feel like my desire to be a happy little homemaker is being grossly taken advantage of. So I of course, say something.
“I’ll get the groceries then,” Lamar said.
So he went to the store the next week to get the groceries.
First, he left the list at home, so he had no idea what we needed.
So he called me from the store so I could verbally give him a list.
“Are you going to be able to remember this?” I asked, knowing the truth despite his answer.
A few minutes later, he called. What aisle is the coffee on? he wanted to know. I told him. “Where’s that?” he asked. I told him next to the cereal. He wanted to know what aisle the oatmeal was on; I told him that. He still wasn’t sure.
“Tell him how many aisles over it is from the magazines,” Cole suggested.
A few more minutes went by and he called again.
This time, it had to do with the kind of yogurt I wanted. Namely, they didn’t have it.
“Then get this brand,” I advised. Another call. “They are out of that too.”
“Then get whatever kind they have as long as it’s not strawberry banana flavored.”
An hour later, he returned home.
He had a 50-pound bag of dog food from the pet store; a gallon of milk, a box of Little Debbies – because Swiss Cake Rolls are a meal into themselves, a box of pasta, a jar of sauce and a box of Life cereal. Nothing on the list.
Nothing I can eat, having celiac either.
I told him of this.
“Well, I figured you don’t eat at home a whole lot anyway. Just dinner, so I can get you a chunk of meat somewhere. But the rest of us have food for the week.”
And a gun magazine with a shiny pistol on the front for reading entertainment, which is probably what made him take nearly two hours.
I looked at my child, who was already putting on his jacket to go with me to the store.
When I gripe and complain about my Friday Night Date Night being spent in the grocery store, I remember it could always be worse.
My husband could offer to do the shopping for me.