Shop and Save

Shop and Save (1,205)

July 12th, 2011

One of the particular blessings of domesticated life that I occasionally miss in my present traveling rogue profile is the joy of patronizing my local, neighborhood grocer. When I lived at a singular address, I had a store I went to every week, knew the aisles backwards and forwards and could have found the pickled onions for you. I also knew how they handled their discounts, mark-downs and sale items and therefore was able to construct a list of my wants and desires which generally coincided with their idea of outstanding prices.

There is one thing for sure: any establishment that advertises “reduced prices” is usually either not reducing them or offers such a limited and low-quality inventory that it’s barely worth the journey. For instance, Dollar General-ly Useless. Family “Duller.” Or Discount Whatever. The only thing you can really guarantee at any one of those places is that you can discount quality. (I am not a snob. It’s just that my experience has told me that there really is no need to put the word “false” before “advertising.” It’s just understood.)

It happened to me yesterday. Arriving at my location, I went to the local Shop and Save for the week’s groceries. I would have to say that half of the name was true—you were able to shop, but saving was out of the question. However, I have hopefully learned not to walk into this unfamiliar terrain with a pre-fabricated list of nutrients and nuggets that I wish to procure. No, I just walk slowly and carefully, observe what is on sale, what apparently was overstocked and down-priced, or what they have decided they just don’t want anymore, and then I place those items in my cart, fingers crossed, hoping to get through the checkout lane with a livable tally and try to get everything back to my locale—and then figure out what I’m going to do with it.

I know it sounds a bit precarious—but it actually does work. For instance, in yesterday’s excursion, fish, pork chops and several other items were noticeably less expensive—normal-priced, in other words—and I was able to tote them out the door, into my room and figure out how to transform them into my daily bread.

Stubbornness is what’s causing many people in our country to believe that poverty is at their doorstep. I’m not implying there aren’t hardships, but I am saying that great countries and intelligent people always find a way to adapt to what is available instead of what they demand.

Time for an example: when the English put taxes on tea, some renegades ran onto the boat and threw it over the side, which ended up being counterproductive because it just made King George mad. The true patriots simply stopped drinking tea and turned to coffee—thus initiating our national obsession.

It is the American way to adjust instead of complain. Looking at the layout of our society in 2011, that may be hard to believe, because the present national pastime is tossing around off-handed complaints instead of using our hands to work with what we’ve got to make it into something that at least resembles what we want.

I survived Shop- and Save—not because it was a great store with great values, or even great customer courtesy. I conquered because I was prepared for them. I had made a decision before I even stepped in to go with the flow of what was available instead of digging my heels in like a snotty-nosed brat, screaming for a candy bar at the check-out aisle.

I can recommend it.

I do not believe the solutions to the problems in our country revolve around Republicans or Democrats, conservatives or liberals. I think we are a generation convinced by Madison Avenue and lying, hungry politicians to believe that we are entitled. I learned yesterday at the local procurer of produce and poultry that I am entitled to nothing but what they are willing to offer.

But I beat them. Why?

Because I found the deal… and made it into a meal.

Published in: on July 12, 2011 at 12:37 pm  Leave a Comment  
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