Sunday, August 18, 2019

Meijer and the anti-goodbye

most people I know have a talent that truly baffles me.

when it's time to say farewell to a visiting friend, a beloved family member, or to an unrequited love spanning decades in a rural airport in France (☚ oh yeah, that's definitely a scene for a new Nicholas Sparks novel/movie), 99.9% know exactly what to say. 


it's as if a Shakespearean ghost whispers the perfect adieu that warms the heart, and conveys the deepest joys of the time spent together during that Labor Day weekend BBQ; or the heart-wrenching, unspoken sorrows/regrets at that rural French airport. 
*quick google search if there is such a thing as a rural airport in France* 🤔 👍🏻

you might think that someone with a blog spanning 14 years, and 95 published posts, should be a veritable whiz with the words--hurling them about with dexterity, capturing the beauty of each moment with an existential imagery that lingers  l o o o n n g g g  after the words fade.

well, you'd be wrong, because I suck at goodbyes.  


I'm ashamed to admit it, but over the years, I've developed a pathetic coping-mechanism for my "goodbye impotence." I smile, give hugs, and utter these unbelievably trite and seemingly insincere words (feel free to join me for a pre-emptive overt eye roll)...

"This isn't goodbye, there's always ("the phone" circa 1981-1990, "email" 1994-2003, "Facebook" 2004-2010, "twitter" 2010-2011, and now...) Insta!" 


so with that background info, imagine my jaw-dropping shock at my latest goodbye predicament propped inside Meijer's entrance/exit airlock--

my first thought was to drop to my knees, raise my fist and shout at the Meijer gods, 


but that would make me a Meijer/Starbucks crazy, so I opted to stop, stare, then woodenly point my phone/camera. #forposterity

the beloved Starbucks, hipster-tucked unassumingly in Meijer's corner is... gone. and that-- that sign, that Starbucks goodbye... was the ultimate anti-goodbye.

no whispering ghosts, no imagery, no unrequited chest pangs of hope and/or regret as the AirFrance commuter jet slides from the gate (I'm serious Nicholas S, this needs to be a novel/movie--call me). just the Starbucks Siren perched atop a white placard, Meijer font in Meijer blue and Meijer red, with a date. 

hours later, after going through the 5 stages of grief (one of the perks of being shallow is a quick grief turnaround time), I whispered, 


then sipped my tall, coconut milk hot chocolate, no whip, on the patio at a Starbucks, a quarter of a mile away from... Meijer, the superstore.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Meijer and the forgivable sin

225,000 sq/ft. that's the average square footage for a Meijer store. 

having a hard time visualizing that number? have a look see...

for my farming/suburban peeps: 4.59 acres 
for my big-city folks: 2 blocks

and you laughed when I compared the superstore to an ultra. #sillyyou

when the task of picking up groceries becomes necessary, I have a full-on, in-my-head pro/con debate about which grocery store to choose. 

Kroger 's size is a hop-skip-and-a-jump experience compared to Meijer but, lacks product variety and quantity, and no apple-pay(!).

Whole Foods is the middle sq/footage option, but... they have a different product variety hurdle--it's for a very specific customer/demographic. I call this customer the "Vegan-Hipsters-That-Reject-(but participate in)-A-Capitalist-Society," #veghiptracs (☚ I would love to see that # trend). on the pro side, the veghiptracs are seriously into apple pay. 🤛🏼

and then there's Meijer, the behemoth Moby Dick superstore.

so, when I inner-debate the options, and choose Meijer, it's because I have convinced myself that the apple pay option #nopurselife, and marathon experience will be worth the assumed product variety and quantity.

insert *overt eye roll*

I review my list, you know, mentally GPSing the most efficient route for this inevitable heater-skelter experience:
parchment paper 
fairlife milk
unreal crispy dark chocolate peanut butter cups
vitamin D gummies
zip-ties the long ones (not the teeny ones, and not the medium ones)
LED bulbs
mio: orange vanilla w/ vitamins
T-straight pins
halo ice cream: peanut butter cup or (2nd choice) mint chip

(side note: I'm analyzing this list to see if I'm revealing too much about myself to the world. it does come off as some sort of pretend health-nut list... but then the LED bulbs, long zip-ties and T straight pins lean... w e i r d. #letmebeclear #Ileanopposite #totheweird #kindofweird)

and here's the result:
cauliflower ✔︎
garlic ✔︎
parchment paper
fairlife milk 
unreal crispy dark chocolate peanut butter cups 
vitamin D gummies 
zip-ties: long ones (not the teeny ones, and not the medium ones ☚ gobs and gobs of these sizes!) 
LED bulbs ✔︎
mio: orange vanilla w/ vitamins  
T straight pins  
halo ice cream: peanut butter cup or (2nd choice) mint chip...

I'm the very picture of fuming disbelief--I pro/con-ed this trip! I push my pathetic two-tier cart with its contents of two root veggies and a box of energy efficiency towards the freezer section.

my foot throbs--all the petulant foot stomping, my hair is in disarray--all the bending over to see if my item is in the waaaaaay back of the shelf, and my tongue is sore--all the biting to keep my blankety-blank frustration from escaping. 

the motion sensor lights behind the glass freezer doors flicker awake as I pass. a pleading mantra loops in my head.

"peanut butter cup--that's all I want. please have it. please!"

trust me, I'm soooo aware that if a person's inner-mantra is a desperate plea for a particular flavor of ice cream, well... that person has lost it. 🙋🏻‍♀️

my cart rolls up to the halo section, I open the frosty door, metaphorically morphing into T-800, my eyes flip to hyper-focus search mode (HFSM), hands disregard their natural aversion to cold, and rapid-sort through the options. 

"no!" my frosty heart-wrenching gasp of disappointment stamps the death-knell into my mantra: 

I regroup, grasping for a modicum of hope, 

"mint chip?" !

I drop into a squat, continue my search, angrily reject the toppled, always left-behind flavor: oatmeal cookiepuh-lease! for the love of creamed-ice, halo(!), put the oatmeal out of its misery!

I reach deep into the frozen closet and pull forward what I know will be a disast--


heretofore this moment... I've never seen, much less tasted the blueberry crumble.

I like blueberries.
I like crumbles.

my  angst dissolves. 
the pain in my foot? gone. 
my hair? feels aright on my head.
my tongue? pfffft(!)--all it feels is anticipation for this flavor curiosity.

walking to my car, I review Meijer's unforgivable sin, only ~30% of my list?! but then, I grip my Meijer emblazoned bag tighter, and glance down at the golden-y tops of two pints of forgiveness.