Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Grocery Store Blues

After you enjoy this video of Snug "reading" Are You My Mother? You can read for yourself about how much fun I think the grocery store is.

I went to the grocery store with four children under four today, and I gave them all cookies. Each and everyone of them. So they would be quiet.

Wait a minute, I don't give my kids cookies, sans the one "oreo" (read; Aldi brand sandwich cookie knock-off) that my daycare kids (age 18 mos and over) get if they eat ALL of their lunch. Why on earth am I serving them in the grocery store?

Because I wanted to remain sane.

See, our local Kroger's has marketed to a young crowd. Snug could croak out the work "Krogers" by the time he was two. When you first get to the store you have a selection of carts to choose from, but when you have four or five children under the age of four along, you opt for the one that holds four children at a time. This is possible because the two front seats are in a "car", sorta like the Little Tykes Cozy Coupe. Snug forfeited his turn in the car section of the cart today because he decided slapping Little Miss E in the backseat was acceptable behavior. Turns out it wasn't. Neither was pulling a jar of pickles off the shelf in Aldi and dropping them on the floor. But I digress.

As I maneuver this insanely large, yet effectively jail-like cart around the store, I must be very careful to not run over displays, other people's small children, or old ladies who take too long in the canned veggie isle. Turning this cart is...interesting, and turning it around, doesn't happen. Not only is the cart almost twice as large as normal, it is usually carrying nearly 100 lbs of children, not to mention the weight of groceries.

So as I carefully avoided disassembling the bread display, I grabbed cookies for all small children. This kept their mouths quiet, their hands and arms inside the ride, and their questions to a minimum as I dashed through the bread, past the bakery, to the deli in my quest to GET OUT as fast as possible. Baby J may or may not have had about 1/4 of his cookie because his mommy was hungry, and he hasn't really had sweets to speak of thus far in life anyway. No need to get crazy now by giving him a whole one.

All was going well and there was an open spot at the U-scan that I headed for until I heard an old man start yelling at me. This guy works for Kroger and was waving wildly at me and telling me to back up (um, sure mister, I'll get right on that). Apparently some "hooligan" had spilled pop (not soda, I assure you it is pop) and he had put some gritty stuff down for easier clean up. Only the spot was about the size of a dinner plate and I was driving a semi. Sorry mister, didn't see it. So as he continued to yell at me and I continued to try and pull my cart out of there I explain that I can't see the floor very well when I use the "car cart". He looks me in the eye and says "They don't use it lady!"

By this time other people have gathered around, as had another worker. Apparently old men yelling at exhausted women in the grocery store is a spectator event. I really didn't know what to say, and before I could stop myself I retorted "well, I can't bring four children to the grocery store and use a regular cart." I said it nicely, but the other worker cracked up and he replied that he had eight children of his own. Then the other worker shut him right up by outright asking him if he had ever helped with the shopping or taken the children anywhere in his life. He had no reply. I had finally backed up the cart and was unloading in another location. We didn't get any stickers (another marketing tool they use on the preschool crowd) on the way out as I just wanted to get out of there.

#1 said not to worry about him though when I talked to him on the phone later. The same man yelled at him (while he was in uniform) for parking (a marked cruiser) in the fire lane. #1 was there to take a theft report from the manager. The man went ballistic on him about not following fire code. #1 informed him if there was a fire, he'd be parked in that spot anyway along with the fire engines and really, you don't tell officers what to do. Perhaps he should have added not to cross mothers with many small children who have crumbs on their faces, a clear indicator that the mother has had it.

**For the record, I do this every week (minus the broken pickles, giving Baby J a cookie, and getting into it with old men) and it usually goes very uneventfuilly...I usually have #1 along!**


The Kampers said...

oh dear! Reminds me of that old janitor from The Terminal with Tom Hanks! Glad you made it out sane!

CFMama said...

Oh my I don't know how you did it. I am willing to bet that you are passed out in bed right now, actually a couple hours ago. Wait, why am I awake? hehe

All Things Family said...

that is TOO funny! I probably would not have been very nice to the old yelling man, and might have even asked for a manager! And bribery for the kids.....let's just say that one of Zaden's words is "teet" which means treat...and by that he means nerds..yep, pure sugar nerds....not often, and never many...but the kid knows what they are, and I know what works to get him to behave!