Monday, October 24, 2011

Why are we terrible at going to the store?

I am a firm believer in combining trips. However I am also terrible at anticipating what we are going to need. I can easily put on the list the things we are out of completely, but I can never realize that if have half a brick of cheese that we are going to need more before next week. Or we do fine on food, but don't check anything but the fridge and end up using paper towels instead of toilet paper for two days. 

And it's not just me. Scott does this too. I can't figure out why two intelligent people have such a problem with this concept. 

Now I would like to keep a well stocked pantry so that we have extra of everything, but I can't do that in a mobile home because I live in a shoe box. I like to buy when it's on sale, and then live off my stash of pasta and canned tomatoes for all time. Unfortunately when you travel a lot you tend not to buy perishable things. This leads to getting home and opening the fridge to revel that you only own moldy cheese and condiments. And frozen peas. And sadness.

We also got a magnetic white board for the fridge so we could make a list of foods that we needed as we went though them. This, in retrospect, was a terrible idea. The problem develops because that system eliminates actually looking around the kitchen to see what were out of. In addition to the above organizational issues, I firmly believe I enter some sort of weird trance when I enter the grocery store. This trance makes me unable to remember any item that is not on my list. I call this problem 'store amnesia.' It's like I get terribly distracted by my desire to get the foods as fast as possible. 

I dislike shopping for foodstuffs, unless the store is really empty. It's like a circus where I have to dodge screaming children, fat isle blockers, the elderly, and the group of like five women that have to take up the whole alley and have to stop every three feet because those cake toppers are just to goddamn darling. I hate all of you. I also tend not to buy a lot without the husband there because I never want to get a cart. They slow me down and I get stuck in shitty cart traffic jams. Plus I have to take them out to the car and hunt down the cart return area while people barrel past me while looking for the best parking spot ever. I just want to get my fucking noodles and get the hell out. 

I think what we need is an app where if I mount a web cam with a flash in the fridge, It will take pictures of what I have and then send them to my phone while I'm in the store trying to decide if I need more soy sauce. Or maybe leave one spouse at home so that the shopping half can call home and start rattling off items. “Do we need more mayo? What about butter? Do you still eat this brand?”

I really don't have a good idea of how to fix the problem, which is why none of my sandwiches had mayo on them for the past week and haven't had any tissues in my office now for about three months. 

But it's okay, because not buying enough food is one hell of a weight loss plan, because hunger is the breakfast of champions. 

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