On Sunday, my wife took off to work on a recording around 3:00. This left me with two cranky kids for the evening. In this situation, I usually try to get outside so at least their whining is not bouncing off the walls and amplifying in a small space. The fresh air and exercise, also, do wonders for crankypants.
I decided to put my son in the stroller and walk with my daughter down to the local grocery store. I needed parsley for the meal I was about to cook, and I had some coupons to use before they expired. The walk was fine, but when we hit the store, my daughter’s incessant babbling started to erode what little sanity I had left. I got the wrong items, tracked back and forth across the store, and was in a fine sate when I got to the checkout.
I settled for the self-checkout as I had less than 15 items in the cart and the other lines were packed. The cart in front of me was packed to the top with well more than 15 items, so I allowed myself a moment of feeling superior in that I could read the signs. And the world laughed at me.
It really started to go downhill when my daughter dropped a package of blueberries which dispersed as widely as possible in the area. Everyone was stepping on blueberries, and I was not cancelling my order to walk yet again across the store to get another package to take advantage of the buy-one-get-one-free sale.
Then I got out my coupons. I saw this train wreck coming. Coupons and the self-checkout lane do not mix well. I plunged on vainly scanning my coupons and having the screen either not acknowledge them, freeze up, or demand a cashier come to assist. Any last neurons were left amidst the squished blueberries on the floor. At least the berries were being swept up by a kindly clerk. My brief moment of feeling superior, also evaporated as this shopping trip now became overly expensive as coupon after coupon did not work.
Next time, I take the regular checkout lane and put the berries on the belt myself. This time, I slunk away with my tail between my legs. Humph.