Wednesday, October 3, 2007


And He Was Buying Blueberries

So my s/o tells my to wait in line at the small grocer with my bag of Breadworks rolls while he runs back to retrieve an item he forgot. Ah, the old "I forgot something ... " We all know it. And we all hate it.
This is when I know I am going to have another "Everybody Loves Raymond/Seinfeld" experience.

"Go ahead in front of me," I tell an old man with three items. He doesn't say anything; most people who are grocery shopping are zombies. The next time they cast a movie with zombies in Pittsburgh, they should just go to Giant Eagle on Sunday afternoon.

"You might as well cut in front of me, too," I tell the next man. (Since when do men do all this shopping?) I look at the woman in the next checkout lane who is smiling knowingly at me and say, "Yeah, it's just like an episode of 'Everybody Loves Raymond'" -- as I usher a mom pushing two toddlers in two separate carts in front of me. "Are they twins?"

"No, 18 months apart."

At this point, I give up and just tell everyone to go ahead of me and remove myself from the line (it's Sunday before a Steeler game, are you kidding me?), and continue to wait for a man who apparently can't find his salami.

That's when the tall, handsome, middle-aged stranger pulls me aside. "I'll tell you how to fix this." He's dressed like he just left church and smells fresh as holy water. Not that I've ever smelled holy water. But I'm guessing it smells fresh. Maybe he's got something to say. That was an understatement. "People respond to reward and punishment. And if he continues to do this, the punishment should progressively become more severe."

(Meantime, s/o returns with salami and cheese and responds to my eyeroll with, "They were giving out free cookies." Lucky for him I have more patience than that all those people who waited for Godot.)

The stranger lowers his voice. "If I may be frank with you" (of course, by all means!), "I spank her. We've been married 37 years and I'm happy as hell."


  1. about a month ago, i read about a christian website(from my reading over at shakesville every day) that not only pushes this idea but instructs husbands!

    i have a fine pittsburgh word for them:


  2. This could only happen to you, Ms. Mon! You should have asked the stranger if he'd like to write for Carbolic Smoke Ball. Sounds like he'd fit right in, don't you think?

  3. Sherry: I didn't see that, but I saw a news story about a man selling paddles on the Internet fairly recently.

    Being that it was Sunday, I lent an ear expecting some kind of "spiritual" advice to solve my problem, which, in the grand scheme of things, I don't really view as a problem. Cancer? Now *that's* a problem.

    At first I thought he was yanking my chains but he was completely serious. When he said, "In every relationship, there has to be a dominant partner and a submissive partner" (seriously, who has these kinds of conversations in grocery stores? Judge Rufus is right -- he'd be perfect for the Carbolic Smoke Ball ...)I wondered, "How does this man know I have a flog?"