Thursday, January 13, 2011

Qualifying for "Hoarders"

Because I always pick the wrong check-out line at the grocery store (you know, the one where the person in front of you is meticulously counting out kopecks to pay the entire 500 rouble grocery bill...kill me now), I have plenty of time to ruminate on life's Big Thoughts while I'm waiting.

Is Britney's disastrous new weave a disturbing sign that she's about to have another meltdown? Will Kim ever find true love with a non-professional athlete? Is that pack of gum really worth two bucks just because there's a "fruity burst of strawberry watermelon splash" in it? And what exactly IS "strawberry watermelon splash"? the job of a grocery store check-out clerk really as fun as I think it would be?

Okay, I know that like most jobs, it might only be fun for a day. If that. But I can't help thinking while I'm standing there (after my brain has already imploded from all the celebrity gossip headlines screaming new and disastrous hook-ups, break-ups, and breakdowns) that it might be kind of interesting to see what everyone buys. Sometimes its obvious why someone is buying specific products - if all they've got is pasta, pasta sauce, a loaf of garlic bread, and some spicy sausage, it's fairly safe to assume that they'll be having an Italian night.

Other times what people are buying can give clues into their personality or lifestyle. How many times did I wait in line at the London Loblaws back in Canada and laugh at the university guys with shopping carts full of frozen pizzas, ramen noodles, Doritos, instant oatmeal, frozen lemonade, and a few kilos of frozen pre-cut French fries?

As a check-out clerk, it must be at least somewhat amusing to see what kind of food people buy. Or maybe I've just been standing in line too long and have started to go just as crazy as Britney...

Anyways, this post DOES have a point. I just got back from the perekrestok (grocery chain here) and I have a feeling that the check-out clerk was seriously confused by my purchases. First of all, I bought an enormous 5-litre jug of drinking water. Our water filter is super old, and the replacement one Stu bought doesn't fit. So I saw this enormous jug of water that was only 41 roubles (a little more than a dollar!) and decided to buy it. Then I saw that the canned tuna was back!! This might not be that exciting to you, but I loooove canned tuna and I haven't been able to find it at any grocery stores for the past two months. Not knowing when I'll ever see it on the shelves again, I bought seven cans. Then I decided I might as well buy some dried chickpeas, so I bought two huge bags of them. (Can you tell I'm getting a little worried about my protein-intake here? haha)

So when the old man in front of me finally finished counting out his kopecks, the check-out clerk scanned my food, raised her painted-on eyebrows, and gave me a serious look, like "Are you preparing for the Apocalypse?" It certainly looked that way. Big jug of water. Numerous tins of tuna. Bags of dried chickpeas.

Either I was stocking up for the end of the world, or I was getting ready to audition for Hoarders...


  1. My question is, "how did you carry all of this home"?

  2. It was a struggle! But the perekrestok is only about a 10 minute walk away so it wasn't too bad!

  3. A few weeks ago at the restaurant something got screwed up with the order for new vegetables and thus we had no bok choy. I was asked to go and get 32 stems/batch thingies from the grocery store. That was fun times...