I’ve been eating fumes this last week so finally made a run to the grocery store. It was down to the last crumbs at my apartment. Literally, I had crackers and chocolate chips for my mandatory snack last night. I’ve been living off Taco Bell, church potluck, and free food from family. Though a few days ago I found expired powdered potato flakes in the back of a top shelf that were “Best by May 2010.” Over a year old, they still tasted good after rehydrating. Back in May 2010 they must have been phenomenal.
Speaking of this grocery store raid, it put a dent in my cash reserves. I’d forgot how expensive food is. When you’re used to only spending $2.45 per meal at Taco Bell you forget the damage a grocery store splurge inflicts. The upside is I’m all restocked on junk food now. (Munching on pre-made cookie dough whilst writing this…) At the grocery story I had to keep reminding myself I’m on a fixed income of $0/month now. Fortuitously, the cookie dough still made the cut.
Speaking of buying, I was shopping for a pair of flip-flops the other day. “Weird purchase,” you say? Not really, I’m going to Haiti next week and want to fit in with the locals. The locals wear flip-flops. Anyways, I started my search at a store I thought would be cheap: Wal-Mart. They had nothing like what I was looking for so I grudgingly worked my way up to Payless Shoe Source (theirs were too flimsy), Famous Footwear (theirs were the wrong size and too expensive), and finally JC Penny’s. I cringed walking into Penny’s because I know prices there are ridiculous. For instance, there were these snazzy jeans I saw that already looked worn out going for $47. Heck, didn’t they know you can get jeans like that at Goodwill for $4? Though come to think of it, last time I tried that trick at Goodwill the ones I bought were too short when I got home (they were probably too short at the store too, but for that price I hadn’t bothered trying them on). When I realized the jeans were the wrong size I was at first perplexed, then had a Eureka! moment realizing I could cut the factory hem out of the bottom. With my pocket knife that was no problem. Sadly, it only made the already worn-out jeans look even worsely ridiculous, plus they were still too short. Then I was in a real dillema… should I donate these now mutilated jeans back to Goodwill? Or just throw them away? I decided on the latter option (hey, they were only four dollars). But I digress, back to my flip-flop story: so I found the perfect flip-flops at JC Penny’s and would you believe it? they were only ten dollars! Oh yes, I do love deals. Though as I write this I’m wondering if I could have made flip-flops from those jeans I threw away.
Speaking of deals, the deal with flip-flops is they flip and flop a lot. Probably that’s how they got their name. I’ve noticed sometimes they even flip right off my feet. They also occasionally stick the gas pedal down wide open while driving. I’ve never owned flip-flops before and though I’m finding them dangerous (already dropped something heavy on my big toe, received itchy bug bites on my feet, and nearly wrecked my car) I really like them a lot. In fact, enough to where I thought of giving them personalized names. Was going to name the left flip-flop John and the right flip-flop Kerry. But then I… changed my mind and ended up naming the left flip-flop Flip and the right flip-flop Flop as that seemed to fit them better. By the way, I don’t know if Kerry’s record was all that incongruous, it’s just what the radio told me and I remembered.
Speaking of people being gullible, while meandering through the mall the other day I was approached by no fewer than two strangers in separate stores thinking I was an employee. I must look more professional than I feel! One guy in Radio Shack gave me his whole spiel, “So I have this Samsung digital dealy that needs a new power adapter bla-bla….” then he stops and gives me a closer look before adding, nonchalantly, “Oh, ok, so let me guess, you don’t work here… right?” I’m thinking to myself, “Yes, that guess would be more accurate than your previous guess, which was wrong, which isn’t to say I couldn’t probably still help you, this store isn’t that big and I doubt the power adapters are in hiding.”
Speaking of wrong guesses, I was talking to my brother on the cell phone a few weeks back while returning to camp. My signal started fading and I knew it would get worse the further I drove so pulled off down a dirt road and parked in front of a cattle gate. About two hours later a police officer pulls up beside me with lights flashing. I do a double take, thinking, “What have I done wrong?” (Why don’t we ever wonder, “What have we done right?”) Mr. Scaryman gets out of his squad car and approaches my window. I’m like, “What’s up?” and he asks, “Is everything ok?” Thinking about this carefully… “Uh, yep, at least it was… Why do you ask?” “Well, we got a call there was an unconscious victim in this vehicle. We’re just checking to make sure everything is ok.” I reassure him I’m quite conscious now and was before too (perhaps he has the wrong vehicle, maybe he should look up the road a bit for other unconsious victims?) I asked if he would like me to move? “No, you can keep talking, you’re fine…”
Speaking of talking, I’m supposed to talk for 30 minutes at church this Wednesday night. Yeah, this Wednesday, as in two days from now. What should I talk about? I have nothing to say… I’m dry as dust. Didn’t even know I was in the hot seat until last week when I randomly checked the website and saw my name plastered on the schedule. Talk about heart attack material, that’s probably how bank robbers feel when they see their want ad in public.
Speaking of having nothing to say, on Facebook I’ve noticed people have plenty to say. There is a group I’m subscribed to where folks talk about how church ought to be done. As you can imagine, that’s a windy topic. A couple days ago a question was raised on the subject of musical instruments that generated a firestorm of over 100 comments. I even weighed in with pointed observations based on many years of wizened experience. Not surprisingly, the conclusion at the end of the discussion was inconclusive.
Speaking of the number 100, I had almost that many people over for supper this evening. Ok, so there were only 9 of us, but it seemed like 100 in my one room apartment. This is what the place looked like before the tornado swept through:
Seeing those matching plates (and mismatching cups) reminds me of having lunch at my grandparents today when I was shown a set of matching plates Grandpa still has he’d bought before marrying Grandma. That plate set was over 60 years old! I wonder if my plates (shown above) will last that long? Check back in 60 years to find out.
In conclusion, if you find a point to this post please let me know because I don’t. I just felt like writing… about things that have happened, not necessarily how I felt about them. The feeling stuff I’ll leave for others more in tune with their emotions. I just report the facts (slightly embellished).