Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Hemingway says that grocery stores are where the magic happens

I am currently sick and what better way to avoid my hacking groggy sniffly reality--not to mention the deluge of student papers to grade and the impending admissions decisions from prospective PhD programs ominously looming on the horizon--than to watch bbc mini-series and blog about frivolous things.  Things like how much I love grocery stores and corn bread.  The corn bread I just threw in for good measure--what I really love is grocery stores.


The way I feel about grocery stores is similar to the way I would imagine a lot of people feel about cruises.  It takes a certain type of person to appreciate them--to revel in jazzercising with former members of n'sync and to unapologetically sip pina coladas over a continental breakfast--but for most people, its just another enclosed space in which to feel trapped and nauseous. 


It just so happens that I am of that particular breed of looney that delights in throwing a basket over her forearm and casually perusing aisle after aisle of canned goods for hours on end. Indeed, an ideal morning for me would consist of rising at 11AM, consuming several cups of coffee while reading or watching trashy t.v., and then going to the grocery store.   Conversely, the worst sort of day for me would consist of rising at 6:30AM, going to the dmv, waiting tables all day, and then being rushed while grocery shopping at night.  Nothing is more distressing to me than being hurried in and out of the grocery store.  I like to savor every last moment--every last glimpse at jars of marmalade and pickled onion.  

This of course is problematic when it comes to my relationship with Moses, who desires his visits to the grocery store to be as quick and efficient as possible.  And its too bad because I find the grocery store to be incredibly romantic.  There is little else so amorous and tender to me as a leisurely strolling with my sweetheart through corridors of food-packed shelves.  After all, isn't one of the most powerful components of cohabitation detailing your pantry?  But because Moses treats every trip to the store as a competition with himself to see how fast he can collect all the necessary items and dart through the check out line, I rarely get to enjoy this particular element of grocery shopping.  

But no matter, he makes up for it with his willingness to watch Downton Abbey with me and his expressed non-objection to seeing Ang Lee's Sense and Sensibility.


Now that I have made my grocery-store-sentiments plain to you, you will undoubtedly be unsurprised to learn that grocery store transgressions are the some of most unforgivable sins in my estimation.  Why, for example, would you ruin someone's perfectly good shopping trip by parking your cart in the middle of a tight aisle and then furrowing your brow in annoyance when asked to move it? Or worse yet, linger with your cart near the coffee, blocking all others from being able to reach it?  And for heaven sakes, why would you nonchalantly push your cart with a plastic truck fused to its front while your two year old child wails inside of it?  I ask you grocery store goers, really!?


But alas, I digress.  This was not meant to be a collection of complaints about the grocery store but a celebration of it.  For what greater joy is there really than visiting a place where you can buy hand sanitizer, my little ponies fruit snacks, an apple, a bottle of wine, and a mop head?