The Walmart lessons…

The Walmart lessons…


Let’s see what I have learned…

Occasionally I will venture out to Walmart. Rarely does this turn out well. I am almost always in a situation where I have to go, not want to go. I look at Walmart like a foreign entity occupying american soil. You should get a visa, passport and shots before you go. Lately I have been keeping track of my visits so that I can have a filter in place to let me know when I should or shouldn’t go…

Late Afternoon: So far I have learned that late afternoon Walmart shopping excursions are a bad idea. Too many families shopping with small children. Too much shoving and pushing and just an overall feeling of WHY AM I HERE! Even my mom and aunt on that trip were actively taking the electric carts they were using and in the case of my aunt trying to run people down. Mom was just wide open on the throttle and get the hell out of my way. I was trying to keep up, save small children and laugh at the tough guys who just almost got run over by little old ladies. Also young women wearing spandex… And grandmas wearing spandex and yes, a grandpa wearing spandex and gym shorts. Why grandpa, why! My friend Andrea says the women wearing spandex is payback for the men wearing it. I understand, but it seems to be a vicious cycle… Late afternoons are not good shopping days, I was mentally shot and probably traumatized by the time we got out of there.

Early Monday mornings: No. No. No. Employees and vendors restocking and blocking pretty much every aisle. Half naked women and men in night clothes. I don’t understand… Is it okay to dress in night clothes because it is early? Also lack of caffeine allows me to be extra nervy and impolite and if I am nothing I am polite… Sorry, nearly choked there. So early Monday is a bad idea. Might as well schedule a lobotomy, it would have been the same to me.

Holidays: Oh God. I hope you are coming back before the next holiday trip to Walmart. All I can say is that if you need something that bad pay someone to go there for you. If, as is my case all your nephews, sons, daughters and nieces are too smart to let you hire them, consider adoption. Screaming children. Nasty floors, picked over merchandise. Impolite &^%#’s. Yes, that was a bad word right there, sorry. It made me wish I had gone holiday shopping at Walmart with Mad Max or the Outlaw Josey Wales. No, no, that’s fine Mister Wales… You can shoot the next one too. Maybe Max’s little dog too. That dog was hardcore. So, no Walmart holiday shopping at all.

Late morning Wednesday shopping:Today was the late morning shopping test. Apparently Wednesday mornings are screaming child day, multiple screaming children as a matter of fact with grandparents or people my age who should not be having children at all. I had two boys running up and down aisles screaming and taunting each other… “I’ll get you!” … Slow down!” “Aiiii”
Little $#^&’s. I felt like tripping one and then yelling to the other “Here he is! Caught the little #$@%^&# for you.” Wonder what they would have made of that. But I was good. The second group was a boy beside a cart with grandpa or the worlds oldest father and a kid in the basket screaming. I mean SCREAMING. And the grandpa/father smiling and ignoring them and the boy beside the cart screamed at the screaming kid telling him to shut up. Thankfully they sell things in other areas of the store and so several times I managed to get away from the little kids. That was when I noticed that many of the shoppers were smiling and nodding. Look right at you, through you, smile and nod and whisk right by you and the screaming children and never lose the smile. Hmmm, I thought, which aisle is the Prozac in. I looked but I didn’t find it.
I also noticed that the produce area was inundated with alternate types. I saw a man with a pink Mohawk. A woman with a brush cut and her sleeves rolled up to biceps almost as big as mine. Another man picking over loose vegetables. I always wondered who in hell bought those loose potatoes, beets, carrots, now I know. Really picky guys in too tight designer jeans. It was weird in the produce area, but it was also heaven. The screaming children were not present, apparently all of these folks had been spayed or neutered.
I hung out there for awhile until I realized I had to travel to the other end of the store for soy milk and so, reluctantly I left. As for Wednesday shopping at Walmart in mid morning? Yes if it is produce, no on the rest. Hey, that is my strongest and only Walmart endorsement ever… Enjoy the balance of the week…


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The Mayan Prophecy and other inaccuracies

The Mayan Prophecy and other inaccuracies

The Mayans: (Written when the end of the world predictions were everywhere, the Mayans foremost)

I am not all that pleased with the Mayans. I have been waiting, but here it is creeping towards the middle of January and the earth is still here. What happened? Great mathematicians my… Well you know.

But really, we are so gullible That’s how these whack jobs like the Mayans get us in the first place. The whole thing probably went something like this…

Bob and Ted Mayan (Well, they were called Mayans, right?) were bored one day. Maybe they had just smoked a little weed, had a couple of ancient beers (Probably not a good European Dark beer, but hey they’re lucky they had any at all), and most likely Bob said something like…

“Hey, man… What if… What if… I forgot.”

“The world ended,” Ted supplied.

“Yeah… Yeah, Man. That’s it. What if, like, the world just ended and… and…” he shrugged (Probably too stoned to think straight).

“Yeah… Yeah… I see it,” Ted nearly screams. “And we all float off into space!”

“Dude!” Bob says.

“Dude,” Ted agrees.

And that was probably it right there. Next thing you know Bob and Ted have started themselves a little cult. Got a bunch of their contemporaries following them. Probably put it on their version of Face Book (The Cave Walls) and that was it. One kid’s a math wiz (At least on their level) and the next thing you know the Mayans are predicting our future. Makes me mad just thinking about it.

So here I am a few thousand years later… I don’t know the Mayans were high that day… I don’t know they had three or four arrests for possession before they were sixteen. Nope. I’m just an average Joe saying Hey What the hell is the deal? And I start to think maybe it’s happening. I’m at work and I turn to Fred my Cat…

“Fred… Fred, does it feel like the Earth is spinning slower to you? … Does it?”

“Meow,” Fred says. Whatever that means. And while I’m on the subject, which I wasn’t. How can a Cat or a Dog express themselves with so few words. This damn cat always answers Meow.

“Fred, what do you think? Were the Mayans right or not?”

“Meow.”

“Really.”

Or

“Fred, I think I hear a dog out there in the yard.”

“Meow.”

“Really.”

What does it mean? Couldn’t once he say…

A dog you say? Well that clinches that. I’m not going out in the yard at all.”

“Really,” I would say, surprised and probably in shock.

“Really? What the hell does really mean? Don’t you people ever say anything else,” Fred asks?

Anyway, the Mayans. It’s mostly our faults. I read somewhere that people who make predictions, by the odds, have to be right 50 percent of the time. That’s pretty limited thinking. Maybe if it’s strictly yes or no, otherwise the variables come into play and who can tell, and that is exactly how they get us. That…  maybe it could be … That… You don’t suppose…?  And we are so fatalistic in our overall views that we just jump on it…

“BARB! Let’s get down to the Walmart and stock up on all the stuff we’re gonna need! The World’s Ending!!!”

And the religious whack jobs? Oh, they’re happy. They just look at you and smile. They’re God is gonna kick some ass now, that’s for sure. You people will starve in the wilderness… STARVE! But God will take care of me! God told me to get a rope and tie myself to the church steeple so that when the world ends, and the Earth stops spinning, I won’t float away…

Good. And when nothing happens I suppose you could use the rope to lasso a cow. Start a life as a cowboy.

We are so gullible. A friend bought a book to me a few years back. He handed it to me…

“Look, don’t pass that around…” He looked around to make sure no one was listening. “It’s the secret to life,” he whispered. “Says so right on the cover… A secret..”

“A secret?”

“SHHHS. Not so loud. It’s a friggin’ secret. Secret knowledge… Read it, I did.”

Or another friend shortly after that.

“It’s the Mayan prophecy, Dude. See this guy that wrote it… Well, he’s not a Mayan, but he’s good with numbers, see, and he says it’s gonna be December 2012…” He looked at me meaningfully.

“Uh huh… December?”

“Yeah… December.”

“Yeah. I got that. I mean what’s gonna be in December 2012?”

He looked at me like I was nuts. “Dude! The world’s ending, Dude.”

“Oh… That December 2012 thing.”

“Yeah, see this guy has a ship full of virgins and he’ll be in the New York harbor waiting to sail…”

“Ah, virgins?”

“Yeah… Yeah, see, to re-populate the world when most everyone dies.”

Gullible. We want to believe it. I personally think if the moron that wrote that book would have showed up with a ship full of virgins he would have found himself in jail. But hey, maybe the Mayan’s could post bail…

Anyway. I’m still here. The world didn’t end, and I didn’t see a single Mayan on T.V. apologizing for the misinformation. Not one. The world is still going and if you went ahead and maxed out your Visa card you’re gonna have to pay it. Next week or the week after that the light bill’s gonna be due, then the car payment, and the next thing you know we will have moved right past those Mayans and their faulty math.

But listen. Keep this to yourself, but I read this book and it predicts that the real date is a year or so away. Then the whole friggin’ thing’s gonna fall down…. Honest. The book says so…


EARTH’S SURVIVORS

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Fred the cat and home repairs

I mentioned Fred the cat not long ago, and so here is the story of Fred the Cat.

I rehabbed the entire house my mother, aunt and uncle live in about twelve years ago, but over the years things have slid. Three people in their seventies can not keep up the maintenance that needs to be performed on a house as it ages.

So, here I am trying to fix up the house again after years of being away. One of the thing s that had happened was that raccoons had found their way into an old chimney, broken through that into a utility area, found their way into a dropped ceiling in my Mothers living room, and dropped down into her lap (Practically) while she was watching T.V. With her Cats, and all Hell broke loose. Well, maybe not all of Hell actually broke loose but I would say a good deal of it did.

The Cats were upset, or as we say here in the north country, Pissed off. The raccoons believed, like Christopher Columbus maybe, that they had discovered this new place, therefor it was theirs. They did not try to make peace, however, with the natives like good old Chris did with my people (Before he stuck it to us, that is…. Just want to keep the record straight). No. The raccoons believed that both the Cats and my Mother should move.

Fortunately raccoons do not always have good access to legal representation, and these were no exception. So as a result my Brother-In-Law Harry came and sent them on their way and closed up the area they had been coming in through. No problem. My Mother lived happily ever after. The Cats basked in the Sunshine, and I came home to a secure well maintained home. No.

Cats are curious about everything. They are probably even curious about other animals or people, besides themselves, but they would probably never admit that though. So, instead of leaving well enough alone, the Cats decided to find out why the raccoons had gotten in, and how, and if a Cat could do it to, and then of course one cat probably dared the other, and so while one held the flashlight the other pried off the fix and got into the chimney. Oh what wonder! What absolute Joy! A way to get in and out of the house without having to use the door (Cats love things like this). And so the cats had their way in and out. Up the roof, into the old chimney, down the chimney, out the broken block that used to vent the furnace, drop right down on the furnace and then spring out of the utility room as soon as the door opened. My mother, who loves Cats, decided in her wisdom that since the cats had worked this out she should help them along by leaving the utility room door open. Oh those were happy cats (I assume).

Then I came along and the first thing I did was shut up the hole. That was how I met Fred. Fred was the only cat still able to find a way in and out, and Fred did not believe I had a say in it, and, well, as it turned out Fred was right. I blocked every hole I could find and Fred found some new way in. Finally, one late afternoon, I came into the Kitchen after working all day on closing the roof line up and any other spot I could find, and announced to Mom that the house was a cat free zone now. The utility door bumped open and Fred sauntered by me to the food bowl Mom had put down for him. She had more faith in the cat than me, well placed too.

That is how I met Fred. I just declared a truce.I thought, this rough and tumble cat beat me fair and square, he can stay.

Fred seemed like a Male cat. He acted like a male cat. He chased the female cats around, corralled them (Cats do that, perfectly fine behaviors for them. I would not recommend you try that at home) So, I assumed Fred was a male cat.

SURPRISE!!!

Fred is not a boy cat at all. Not only is Fred not a boy cat. Yes, this means I had to give him a quick exam, have you ever had a cat jump up on your lap and turn around and stick their butt in your face? Sure you have. Cat’s do that all the time. They think you Want to see their butt. Okay, it was at one of these times that I noticed Fred was not Anatomically equipped to be a boy cat. Right Fred was missing a few things and had a few things he shouldn’t have had.

“Hey, Ma!” I yelled. “Fred’s not a boy cat!”

“You’re a quick thinker,” Mom said. “I told you he might not be.”

“Might not be,” I said defensively.

“Well I guess I can change that to definitely isn’t,” Mom said and went back to watching General Hospital.

What could I say. Fred cocked her head back to me as if to ask if I got a good enough look. Cat’s are such smart asses, then jumped down and sauntered away.

End of story, except, Fred is looking distinctly fat… Fatter. Mom and I have come to a consensus, Fred the cat is probably pregnant. I said, “Well I thought Fred was just hanging out with those male cats ’cause they were his buddies!”

“Oh, they were her buddies alright,” Mom said wisely.


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