Tag Archives: CoVid-19

Senior Shopping Showdown

Photo by Rita Mantarro,
National Geographic

I’ve seen some crazy things in my life, been in some scary situations. I’ve been grocery shopping in the Middle East where people were being beheaded across the street from the store, but I’m not kidding when I say my adventure to my rural middle-Michigan grocery store yesterday morning was far more harrowing than that. Honestly, it was the perfect storm: Social security and unemployment checks had hit the banks the night before and it was senior shopping day during a pandemic. In other words: Dante’s Second Circle of Hell.

My only explanation for how I got caught in the Blue Wave – the crush of blue-haired old ladies and old guys praying their prostate would hold up long enough to get through the checkout line – is that I’ve completely lost track of what day it is. Obviously Blursday the Fortyteenth of Maprilay is when seniors get to go to the store first. At some point I’ll be offended that no one stopped and carded me for proof I was old enough to be there. If only someone had!

Seniors are ruthless. They’re taking on the produce department like they’re storming the beaches at Normandy! I got body-checked by an old lady wearing a ski mask and elbow-length Playtex Living Gloves as we were both reaching for the last package of 90% lean ground beef. I now bear the scars of that battle lost. I can only guess that, at that age, there’s not much more to live for than Mexican-blend shredded cheese in a resealable package so screw social distancing if I happen to be in the way of that.

Seniors also have the highly developed survival instincts of alligators which explains why they’ve lived this long. One old guy “accidentally” spilled a carton of fresh blueberries on the floor, I’m sure, thinking that if I slip and fall, it’ll give him extra time to get to the bread aisle before me. The rest of the world is dying of CoVid-19 and I’m dying of blueberry-induced trauma.

On the bright side, God is particularly fond of me so I was able to score an 18-count MEGA roll package of toilet paper. I only bought one, naturally, and to pay my good fortune forward, I loaded one for the grandma next to me. Of course, she could no longer see to drive with it in the basket of her motorized cart but this in no way changed her level of navigational competency.

Needless to say, I will not be back to the store for quite a while. At least not until I’ve recovered from this experience which could take a lifetime!

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