Anyone who has spent any time on my blog knows that I am pretty much good for nothing. I complain a lot, and I’m relatively good at complaining… in fact, if complaining were an occupation, there is a good chance I would finely be at the top of my game career-wise, ’cause I am, in my humble opinion, a top-notch bitcher. Ok, so I’m not good for nothing! I’m a good… no, a GREAT… bitcher! Man, if only the world could compensate me for this talent. That’s what I want on my tombstone: “Not Good for Much, But Boy Could He Bitch!”
Anyway, I had an experience a couple of weeks ago that got the complain-mechanism in my brain all fired up and ready to go. In fact, I was so torqued, I had to wait a couple of weeks just to prevent this post from becoming a spewing geyser of venomous hate… which it still runs the risk of becoming. I promise, I’ll try to be civil.
I was feeling adventurous and was going to try our a new recipe. In order to follow this recipe, I needed some Italian sausage links. Since we had none of these links at home, I was forced to drive to a grocery store. The closet grocery store to my house was a local store called Panhandle Coop, so I drove to Coop in an attempt to save time. I figured I could pick up about 3 packaged of Italian sausage for about $3.00 each.
I walk into Coop and head to the meat department. I walk up to the section that contains the Italian sausage and the crap is like $5.00 per pack. I turn around, grumbling loudly to myself and I leave the stinking store. “Hometown friendly my $#*!,” I grumble.
I drive a couple of blocks over to Safeway. I almost never shop at Safeway, because I feel like their name should really be “Wanna-Shop-Here-Then-Bend-Over-And-Take-Our-Exorbitantly-High-Prices-Like-A-Convict-Reaching-For-The-Soap-Way.” But maybe… just maybe… they are having a sale or something. After all, I have one of their pain in the $#*! Club Cards! I like to think of people who shop at Safeway as mostly mentally-deficient, because only those with brain damage would pay twice what something is worth just have the store pretty much to themselves while they shop.
Ok, so I walk into Safeway and I make my way to the meat department. I walk up to the Italian sausage section and… GLORY… they have Italian sausage on sale for $2.99 a package. I grab 3 packs from right behind the sign (this is particularly important and will come into play a little later) and I head to the counter.
I’m fumbling through my wallet searching for that stinking Club Card as the pimple-faced checker rings-up my sausage. I hand him the card and he swipes it.
“That’ll be $17.97,” croaks pimple-face.
“Should be like 9 bucks,” I tell him. “It’s on sale.”
He looks over at the cashier next to him and holds up my sausage, “Is this on sale?” he asks.
“No, not that one,” says next-door pimple-face.
“I’ll show you,” I say and I start walking back to the stinking meat department.
Me and my pimple-face get to the meat department and I point triumphantly at the sign which boldly proclaims that Italian sausage is on sale for $2.99 per package… and then I notice in very small print that it’s the Safeway brand of sausage that’s on sale. I had grabbed Johnsonville, which isn’t on sale even though the Johnsonville is the only sausage I can find in the meat cooler.
“I want the stuff that’s on sale,” I say.
“Yeah, we’re out of that,” says pimple-face rather a little too smugly for my taste.
“Then why is the sign still up and why is the Johnsonville piled up behind the sale sign?” I ask. “Can’t you honor the marked sale price with the product that is displayed?”
“No, that sausage isn’t on sale,” says Smugly van Pimple-face.
“Screw Safeway,” I say and make for the door, grumbling and unleashing expletives as I storm past the manager at the customer service counter as I realize that Safeway having a customer service counter is somewhat like Payless Shoes having an airplane repair counter.
“But Payless Shoes doesn’t offer airplane repair,” you may say.
I get in my car and I drive five mile to stinking Walmart. I get out of the car and hike like 1/2 mile to the meat department. I grab 3 packages of $3.00 Italian sausage and go to the checkout. I don’t have to get dig out any stupid cards, I pay my $9.00, and I leave. If I had just gone to Walmart in the first place, I would have saved time, I would have put less wear and tear on my car, and my blood pressure would have stayed within a safe range.
Ok, so the safe bet is to avoid all of the other retarded grocery stores and shop at Walmart, right? Moral presented in a solid fashion, correct? I thought so, until a couple of days later.
The family and I decide that the dry, itchy skin we are all experiencing needs to come to an end, so the oldest boy and I head out to buy some water softener salt for our water softener (which has been out for awhile because… uh, well, because I’m lazy, I guess.) But the boy and I play it smart. We don’t go to Coop, we don’t bother with Wanna-Shop-Here-Then-Bend-Over-And-Take-Our-Exorbitantly-High-Prices-Like-A-Convict-Reaching-For-The-Soap-Way, we head straight to Walmart. We park the car, head into the store, and make our way right to… where… the… water…softener… salt… used… to… be…
“Where in the crap is the water softener salt?” I ask the boy.
The boy shrugs and gets that oh-man-Dad-is-getting-mad-and-is-going-to-embarrass-me-in-public look on his face.
Our Walmart recently went through a remodel, which means that they put down new floors, moved everything in the store to a different location, and cut their selection way back… after all, they have already capitalized on offering a great selection and low prices and they have most people in the area trained to shop there, so why would they want to go through the expense of offering any sort of selection anymore? Walmart know better what you need to buy than you do… trust them, they are Walmart!
Finally spying an elusive Walmart employee, I ask where the softener salt has been moved to. The employee points out that the salt has been moved to the opposite end of the store, so the boy and I trek that direction.
After loading our cart up with softener salt, we head to the checkouts (which, it is not easy to push a cart full of bags of water softener salt through Walmart.) After paying for the crap, we start to make our way out of the store, struggling with that stupid cart full of heavy softener salt. I’m about to leave the building when one of the ‘greeters’ yells, “Excuse me… sir… sir…” and I finally realize that the dude is yelling at me “… I’m going to need to check your receipt!”
“What?” I ask.
“I’m going to need to check your receipt.”
“You think I’m stealing a cart full of water softener salt?” I ask.
“I’m sorry, I need to see your receipt.”
“Of course,” I spew. “I’m shopping at Walmart, therefore, I am the kind of person who would steal, right.” I’m pretty hot. Go into flipping Walmart, spend your hard earned money, and be treated like a criminal for it! I HATE Walmart.
“Well, if you are shopping at Walmart, you are the one that is being robbed,” says greeter-dude. He smiles. He puts his hand on my shoulder as he delivers his lame attempt at calming me down.
The boy pulls the hood of his hoodie up over his head and heads straight for the parking lot.
I’m not a violent man… mostly because I’m kind of a wimp and fear getting the snot kicked out of me… but this Walmart dude is about to lose his hand! And then, in a brief moment of clarity, I realize that this poor sap is stuck greeting ticked-off Walmart customers and making sure that the thieves aren’t running rampant through the front doors of Walmart. His employment at Walmart is punishment enough for his hand touching my person. I let him check my receipt, proving to him that not every nincompoop that graces the front stoop of Walmart is out to rob the stinking store blind (but… if you’ve ever looked around Walmart, you must realize that many of the shoppers in a Walmart are the kind of people that you would search if they spent a few minutes in you house, and by shopping at Walmart, we apparently put ourselves in the same class as this trash, and we should feel happy being treated like thieves by the greeters at Walmart after we’ve spent our hard-earned money to support their employment!)
The boy and I get home and I relay the experience to the wife.
“You shouldn’t act like that in front of the boy,” she says. “You’re setting a bad example… and it embarrasses him.”
So, I’m coming to the holy revelation that I am meant to stay away from grocery stores, and the final anchor in this feeling was pounded home the other night. My favorite ice cream in the entire world is Ben & Jerry’s Pistachio Pistachio Ice Cream. There is no better treat on the planet. We seldom have this treat. I know that 2 of the 4 grocery stores in our little berg do not carry this particular slice of heaven because they suck! That leaves us with Walmart and… heaven forbid… Safeway. After a great meal, the wife says, “Wouldn’t some Pistachio Pistachio be good right about now?”
“Oh yeah, that would be AWESOME,” I say… because I am a dorky product of the 80s.
“Well, Walmart doesn’t carry it anymore,” says the wife. “Since their remodel, they went from carrying about every flavor of Ben & Jerry’s to, I think, like, six flavors.” After all, Walmart knows better what you want to buy that you do yourself.
“What!,” I cry. If Walmart doesn’t carry my Pistachio Pistachio… and stinking Panhandle Coop doesn’t carry my Pistachio Pistachio… and the stupid Nash Finch store doesn’t carry Pistachio Pistachio… that leaves stinking Safeway, where I recently swore not another of my hard-earned pennies would be spent!
Needless to say, I called Safeway, they had Ben & Jerry’s Pistachio Pistachio Ice Cream, and the wife ran to their store and spent, I believe, about $20.00 for a pint of my favorite ice cream.
The moral of the story is… who knows?!? Corporate American SUCKS! Walmart SUCKS! Panhandle Coop and Nash Finch SUCK! I would honestly consider voting democrat if it meant our local grocery stores would stop being so stinking SUCKY and actually put the wants… no, I say, needs of the customers right up there alongside their stinking PROFITS (uh… ok, me vote democrat… hahaha… that may be pushing it… hahaha… I’m upset, I didn’t have a lobotomy.)
I guess the moral of the story has to be the same as the title of this post: Safeway SUCKS!