They’re working me. Working me hard.
The WINCO, I mean.
I really like that place – just about everything about it. I like that it’s employee owned, I like the no-frills atmosphere, the dual-customer checkout lines, that they don’t take credit cards in order to keep prices low, the sense of community and the relationships you form, however fleeting, as you wind your way through the aisles, encountering the same fellow shoppers time and again.
The prices, of course, are simply unchallenged in the valley, generally speaking. And while this may sound somewhat nonsensical, sometimes … sometimes they’re too low. I’m
writing about things like $0.39 for a can of pickled artichoke hearts or $0.99
for the new Lays Festering Flesh® flavored potato chips. Stuff they know I detest, but that I just might buy if the price is right.
I know it’s just a little game to them, seeing what item that I absolutely loathe they can get me to buy, and I don’t begrudge them their fun. Heck, I even have a little admiration for them, and I occasionally get a chuckle upon seeing the case of Bar-B-Q Diet African Hedgehog Tongue gathering dust in the pantry.
I’m a bit concerned about what they’re up to with the newest twist to their tomfoolery, however. They seem to have grown tired of inducing me to buy small quantities of obscure and never-to-be-used products, and have pivoted to efforts of making me stock myself out of my own home.
I first noticed the sale display a few months ago. “Tomato Sauce, 8 oz. cans, $0.18,” read the hand-written sign. It was low-key and non-aggressive, but something about it caught my eye as I was rounding the condiment aisle. “My god …” I muttered, as I slowed to a stop, staring in disbelief. “Get your fat ass to one side or the other!” yelled an elderly shopper from behind me, jamming her cane into my ribs.
I knew that such a sale wouldn’t last long, and, in fact, I fell into a bit of a panic as I saw an employee walking toward me, carrying a sign. Luckily, she didn’t seem to be seriously injured as I helped her up, though she seemed to regard my denial of tripping her on purpose with skepticism as she explained that she was heading to the produce aisle.
Anyway, the 8 oz. can of sauce is just about perfect for someone in my position. It can be used to make a single pizza, or to pour onto a single piece of lasagna, or to make a single serving of garlic cheese bread … oh jeez, this is getting depressing. Let’s just say it’s a versatile product for one who lives as one. The Winco pranksters had obviously done some reconnaissance work in preparation for this.
I purchased a flat (24 cans) that day, and was floored a week later when I returned to find the price still in effect! I marveled at my good fortune as I stacked up another flat, looking forward to being rich in sauce for months to come. And then … the same thing happened the next week, and the next, and the next.
They’re working me. Working me hard.
As of this writing, I’ve got what I conservatively estimate at 800-1,000 cans of tomato sauce. As I try to rationalize this internally, I find that I’m persuading myself to explore new uses for it. It’s been 2 weeks since I’ve brushed with actual toothpaste, and the engine in the Zuke Of Earle seems to have developed an odd knocking since I made the observation that it had a consistency similar to 10w-40 motor oil. It hasn’t done a damn thing for my split ends, that’s for sure.
I hope I can find some control soon. The kitchen is nearly stacked full, and I’m having some trouble navigating the dining room. I don’t hold any animosity toward the rascals down at the store … I’m sure they meant no harm; it’s just that sometimes a little fun can get out of hand, and that’s okay.
God forbid they lower the price of Spam.