Saturday, October 15, 2005

Two Gallons of Mayonnaise and a Chainsaw

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I pushed the SUV-sized two-seater shopping cart over the terracotta pavers toward the awaiting maw of the local Costco. The security pass card with my elongated portrait was palmed and ready to flash at the attentive sentries. The sentinel guarding the door leading to the customer service desk appeared to be in her 60s. I figured I could take her if necessary.

The well-oiled wheels on the massive orange plastic-grate cart clapped in time against the bricks below. The Howler monkey gaped with glee. She loves shopping carts, and this particular model was luxurious in its dimensions. Her pigtails bobbed in time with the rhythm of the wheels, and the gusty October wind poured onto her face. This was her first foray into a strong autumn wind. She appeared to approve.

It is amazing what you can buy at Costco. Apart from the ridiculously cheap cases of beer and giant bricks of cheese, I've also been known to bring home Computers, lawn mowers, a 14-piece stainless steel cook set, DVDs, cases of mangos, truck tires, two-gallon jugs of Aronia berry juice, and a parka, just to name a few things...

Today, however, I was there to purchase just one single item. No 12-pack of macaroni and cheese, no case of Australian wine, no bucket of Red Vines, not even a king-size bed. No. Today, the monkey and I went to Costco to buy a car. Yes, a car. While I still refuse to acquiesce to the call of the minivan, the howler monkey has made necessary a larger form of transportation than my little Mitsubishi can provide.

Now, Costco does not stock cars on the shelves, at least not yet. No, they have a service that requires a couple of phone calls and some paperwork, but basically you come away with a no-haggle top-secret Costco-price on a new car. The purchase is scheduled for tomorrow, and I am still a bit doubtful, but I will report on my experience when it is over.

As I sat at the indoor snack facility (with umbrellas over the tables??) reviewing the paperwork, the monkey pointed at passing patrons, calling each one "Daddy" as they walked by. She was enjoying herself, and who knows, she might have been right, my wife having loose morals and all. (Joking, sweetheart, just joking!!)

Anyway, as I sat there, I started paying attention to what the other customers were taking home. Most maneuvered massive carts laden with all manner of consumer nonsense. A few had only single large boxes, one even seemed to be taking home the $5,000 giant screen TV. Then, out of the corner of my eye, I spied him. He was walking my way. He seemed oddly normal in his khakis and flannel shirt, like an accountant in his mid-40s. Normal, that is, with the exception of his newly-purchased goods.

In his left hand, he carried two one-gallon jugs of mayonnaise held together with a blue-plastic carrying strap. In his right hand, yes, he was carrying a brand new chain saw.

Now, what I want to know is how the hell did that happen? Was that his wife's idea? Was the mayonnaise an impulse-buy? Was there an actual shopping list?

1) Chainsaw (check)

2) Two Gallons of Mayonnaise (check)

I don't know. I do hope that he makes good use of the mayonnaise. Regardless though, that man, whoever he is, will forever be my personal Costco hero.


  1. Clearly, his other chainsaw broke while trying to harvest the elusive mayo fruit. With neither mayo nor operative chainsaw, his choices were clear.

  2. I am currious about this Mayo fruit of which you speak. Is it decorative? Would it flourish in a temperate zone?

  3. Jadine has recently discovered the wonders of Costco, and we went shopping this weekend ourselves. I have no idea what I'm going to do with twelve sticks of deodorant but my pits will smell better than I do, long after I'm dead.

  4. Do not mock the double seated groecery cart, my friend. All they need now is one with a divider between the two seats to reduce the "Mom, he's touching me!" "Hey, give me back my free sample of costco stale pastry!" Actually, blinders on the sides would be nice too. Just wait until howler mokey says more than "Daddy" and can pull big glass jars off the shelves the second you turn your back to reach for your case of mangoes....


Be compelling.

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