|This isn't Merle, but he kind of looks like him.|
I ran into Merle and Lucy at Kroger the other day. Kay and I were trying to find the cookies when I made eye contact with Merle from mid-aisle. It was one of those deals where you recognize somebody, but you don’t know from where.
Fortunately, Merle knew from where. Sensing my unease he said, “Whataburger.” I just love people who don’t make me guess. I don’t have the stamina for it.
Of course, it was Whataburger. Merle and his wife go to Whataburger almost morningly. They sit with several other of the less young and solve a multitude of life’s preponderancies.
Kay and I occasionally hit Whataburger right before we do some of our in-town chores. On each occasion we’ve seen Merle and Lucy sitting there talking with the gang. I always get a reciprocal smile and nod, but don’t join in. Some gangs have initiations that are quite taxing.
For breakfast at Whataburger, Kay and I always get Breakfast on a Bun… bacon. It’s the best, Jerry. And, get this -- seniors get a discount on their drinks. I can get a small coffee for free! They’ve got the best breakfast sandwich, they play old rock ‘n roll hits on the radio, and they serve discounted drinks to old people. If they put a wading pool in the parking lot, I’d spend the whole day there.
By the by, Kay looks too young to be a senior citizen. They have never asked for her ID, but it would tickle her if they did. Crazy thing is, the girl is two weeks older than I am. We’d look equally young, but I didn’t think to take care of my face… or my hair. Look at me now. Just look at me! Don’t let this happen to you.
All right, let’s get back to Merle. He’s standing there in Kroger over by the salad dressing waiting for Lucy to decide on a brand. – Sidebar: Lucy is not Merle’s wife’s name. I think it’s Lucretia, but I have no idea how to spell that.
So, Kay and I got to talk with Merle and Lucy for a little while in the store. Nice couple. Strange taste in salad dressing. (I just made that up.)
Just this morning, at Kay’s insistence, we went to Whataburger before grocery shopping. Seems I’m a most impulsive buyer of stupid stuff when I’m hungry. My thinker repositions all its saneness back there with the names of the State capitals. A lot of dust back there.
Bottom line, when I’m hungry, I end up doing stuff like buying a carton of Blue Bell Grandma’s Pecan Apple Butter and a carton of Chocolate Grease Nut Cookie Dough. Next morning, I have no recollection of the purchase.
Because of this morning’s Whataburger breakfast stop, I didn’t buy anything stupid in Kroger. Kay thought the pecan pie unnecessary, but what does she know. I told her that she oughtta buy a Stick-in-Mud Pie with Walnuts.
While leaving Kroger I checked on the progress of the HEB across the street. In my neck of the woods, they’re building a giant H.E.B. right across from Kroger. There’s gonna be a battle of the food depositories. It’s a gastronomical perfect storm.
In anticipation of the HEB opening, the Kroger boss is shuffling stuff around. Store bosses go to school to know the best place to put stuff. You don’t even wanna know where they put the crackers. Nor will you. Why is it that no one ever consults me before making major changes in stuff? I know things. Use me!
Before the Kroger shuffle, I had the place completely figured out. I was actually helping old ladies and Californians find stuff. Not now. Now, I’m reminded of a line from Shakespeare’s brother: “Use resides with me not. I am become the asker of where stuff is.” (From “Three Guys of Syracuse.”)
Two big grocery stores right across the street from one another. What will I do? What WILL I do? I only wish I had thought to ask Merle and Lucy their thoughts on the matter.
Me? My first concern in choosing between two competing grocery stores is variety. I don’t want too much, nor too little. Life is too short for too much.
An example of too much variety is breakfast cereal. Last year 38 new types of cereal arrived on the market. Thirty-eight new boxes to overlook on my search for Wheat Chex.
Soon there will grocery malls. – Okay, darling, I’m going to the Cereal Store, while you head to the soup over by the penguin pond.
Too much of a good thing. That’s what came across my mind after making eye contact with Merle. The origins of some articles are just weird as they can be. Fortunately, the articles themselves end up making perfect sense.
By the way, did I mention that Lucy isn’t Merle’s wife’s real name?
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