Wednesday, March 3, 2021

I spent HOW much at No Frills??

"That will be $232.31 - would you like to use your $10 reward from your PC points?" says the teenager cashier at No Frills.

"I'm sorry it was HOW much?"


"Yes. Yes, I would like to use my $10 in reward points." I say as calmly as I can, while inside my head I am yelling at the top of my lungs:


(And just so we're all clear here - I am shopping for two, count 'em TWO people now.)

Last week I made the mistake of shopping at Walmart for groceries - which I don't usually do, because I always spend too much, on account of the fact that I don't know my way around the grocery part of the store and I always see shit that I don't need, but I suddenly desperately want. I had gone for the cheap cans of red and green Thai curry - but had ended up with a quick dry sports bra, a vintage Queen t-shirt, 3 types of gluten free bread products, 2 body washes (on sale), waffle fries (fucking waffle fries?!?), and rice and pasta alternatives, because I might as well stock up so that I didn't have to go back the next week.

While in Walmart, I could feel myself leaning into a panic attack. You know, because all of a sudden you look around and see that everyone in the store is wearing masks and you realize you're trapped in some weird-ass sort of sci-fi version of your life where you haven't been able to see your parents in forever because they're old and you might kill them from the pandemic that's been in Canada for almost a year? That kind of panic attack? The Musac playing over the speakers was All By Myself - not the Celine Dion version, but the original by Eric Carman. Instead of jamming out to it in a delightfully campy air drumming solo à la Bridget Jones's Diary, I found myself fighting the urge to lie in the middle of the vitamin aisle making floor angels while hysterically sobbing.

So this week? No shopping at Walmart. It is No Frills. I will be in and out in 20 minutes. I bring three bags in with me, which is overkill, because there are only eight items on my shopping list (milk, peppers, ground meat, apples, unsweetened chocolate, cheese, sour cream and cottage cheese) - and there is no way that I will have to use all three bags. But I approach the check out lane (63 minutes later) and see that there are WAY more than eights items in my cart - certainly more than three bags will hold, so I ask for a couple more. After paying the $222.31 for the food, I'm in some sort of fugue state as I pack up everything - unsure as to what the fuck I have purchased. I mean, as I'm seeing the items in my actual hands I have no idea what they are and what they've cost. 

On the drive home, all I say is "$222.31, $222.31, $222.31..." like some sort of weird fucking mantra. Even as  the groceries are unpacked on my kitchen counter, I still cannot comprehend what went wrong. Then I look at the receipt, particularly for the higher ticket items.

$7.97 Kitty Litter - wasn't on my list, but... on sale this week! We have three fucking cats, extra fucking kitty litter is a necessity. 

$10.00 Hot chocolate mix - because David loves his hot chocolate and although we are not out yet, by the end of the week we probably will be, depending on how cold the fucking weather is.

$9.47 Decadent Milk Chocolate Chips - see point above, but change "hot chocolate" to "fucking  chocolate chips."

$10.00 Smoked Salmon - but it was for three smaller packs that, yes, are a fucking luxury, but I really like smoked salmon and the per portion price is very fucking reasonable and $10.00 is much cheaper than buying a fucking new pair of shoes.

It goes on and on. And not just higher ticket items. Whipping cream? Why the fuck do I need whipping cream? Because I might make something that will require it. Maybe. Not sure what it will be, but I have read a bunch of fucking recipes this week and I'm sure that one of them had whipping cream in it. Two types of fucking ice cream - one for David and lactose free coconut ice cream for me. Because there is no ice cream in the house and can we not have something sweet as a fucking pick-me-up?!? Licorice tea - which is FUCKING soothing, even if we have six other fucking herbal teas in the cupboard already.

When I add up all the things that were not on my shopping list, but were either just good to have on hand for when I would need them, or sounded like something David might want as a treat or I might like to snack on right when I got home... (Dill Pickle Quaker Fucking Mini Rice Cakes) I realize that I have spent $195.07 more than I needed to today. 


What the actual fuck? I mean, I know that we'll eat it all, but almost two hundred dollars more than I needed to spend? What the fuck went wrong? What was I doing? I can tell you what I wasn't fucking doing, I wasn't actually looking at my fucking shopping list while I was at fucking No Frills. And what I also wasn't doing? I wasn't purchasing ONLY the things that were on that fucking list. 

Oh Jesus... I went up and down all the aisles. ALL of them. You don't do that at the grocery store! You get in and you get the fuck out - that is your mission when you shop. It's not a fucking invitation to lose your mind and buy whatever the fuck you want!!  Give me just a second while I bang my head on the table.  (Deep breath. Shoulders back.)

The good news? Now I can whip some fucking cream (that isn't in ANY way lactose-free) to put on my lactose-fucking-free coconut milk ice cream which I can then cover in salted fucking caramel sauce. 

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