March 02, 2006

Show and a Dinner

On my way home from work this afternoon I stopped at the grocery store. Now normally I enjoy grocery shopping because I like to cook almost as much as I like to eat. The store I usually go to is pretty good, mainly because it's very convenient to get in and out. But it also seems to be a magnet for the mentally ill.

When it's nice out, there's one old nut-lady who sits out front and chatters away at everyone who comes and goes. Occasionally she'll wander inside and count the carts.

A very occasional visitor is "the preacher", who will try his best to strike up a conversation with you, which quickly turns religious. Come along about the second sentence you direct at him, he starts slipping random items into your cart. The first time he did this to me, I asked him what he was doing, and he explained that a good christian man like myself wouldn't begrudge a few groceries to someone in need. I had to laugh because he just grabs whatever is closest and acts like you'll never notice what he's doing. That day he caught me in a mixed-goods aisle and he wanted me to buy him a bottle of maple syrup, a potholder, dental floss and a home pregnancy test. He always blesses you, even when you make him take his stuff out of your cart.

Today was the first time I met the new loon. He's a tall thin guy, and at first I mistook him for a regular customer. He came in as I was headed towards the checkout lanes, and got in line behind me holding a bottle of wine. The lines were all hosed up because someone called in sick and someone couldn't stay late to cover and all that happy nonsense that you get when you try to manage a workforce comprised of motivated (hah!) high school dropouts confronted with that inexplicable rush at shift change. Next thing you know, wine-loon is in the managers face about opening up more registers because (as he grandly swept his arm around to include us all), there were important people waiting, and he should treat his customers better. I had to laugh.

The manager grabbed the wine from the loon and shoo'd him out. He came right back in, still incensed about the lines, and this time followed by lady-nut, who was scolding him for bothering people. They were escorted back outside (gently and nicely, kudos to the manager). When I left, lady-nut was on the pay phone (she spends hours talking to herself) and the loon was taking all the carts from the front of the store and neatly putting them in the cart-corral at the farthest end of the parking lot.


Posted by Ted at March 2, 2006 05:12 PM | TrackBack
Category: Square Pegs

Is there a cover charge when they have entertainment like that?

Posted by: Tuning Spork at March 2, 2006 06:53 PM

You are very fortunate. A place like that is the Mother Lode of Blogfodder.

Posted by: Jim - PRS at March 2, 2006 10:04 PM

Yeah, where are all the blogfodder loons when we need them?

Posted by: dogette at March 3, 2006 01:03 PM
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