Husbands should not be allowed in the grocery store.
Yes, I said it, and I’ll say it again: Husbands should not be allowed in the grocery store.
I’m not talking about men. I’m talking about “men whose wives normally do all the cooking and shopping but who, for some unknown reason, feel they need to have a say in Thanksgiving dinner preparations and who don’t know where anything is or anything about grocery store etiquette,” those Husbands.
Of course, some would argue that grocery store etiquette is an oxymoron and that some would include me. You want examples of an inability to perceive spatial relationships and demonstrations of “alone on the planet syndrome” look no further than your average grocery store aisle in which you are likely to find a cart parked smack in the middle, or perhaps even cross wise. So no, grocery stores are not secret havens of good manners and consideration for one’s fellow human beings.
That said, nothing, nothing is more useless in a grocery store on the weekend before a major cooking holiday, and Thanksgiving is the major cooking holiday in the U.S. calendar, than someone who 1) can’t be sent to fetch things because he doesn’t know where anything is, and 2) has no concept of how to get in and out in the fastest time possible.
No, Husbands want to browse. They want to compare. They want to know why this brand has to be bought instead of this other brand. Husbands fail to recognize that for their wives the object of the grocery shopping errand is mostly likely to get in and out as fast as possible.
And they’re in the way. They’re an extra body that those of us who tend to shop at the about the same time every week now have to navigate around in aisles that are already way too crowded with displays that manufacturers think are going to boost sales or stock that still needs to be thrown even on a Saturday afternoon because store management is too cheap to pay for clerks to do it at night when the store is closed.
I realize that it is a tad bit sexist of me to label these people Husbands just because 90% of them are male. The fact is that in my household TGF hasn’t been to the grocery store but a dozen times in as many years. This is not to say that I do the cooking. In fact, it’s kind of scary when I cook outside my comfort zone, but I am the one who sacrifices herself on the grocery store altar each week for the simple reason that I’m the one who hates the task least.
This week’s grocery run took two hours instead of the usual 50 or so minutes just because there were so many extra bodies to navigate around, not to mention the extra bodies that felt the need to have their own carts. That additional hour spent matters when it already looks like midnight outside and it’s only 5:30 p.m.
So please, for the love of whatever god you happen to believe in, don’t think that if you don’t normally do the shopping that you’re “helping out” by coming along this week. You’re not, and you’re just making people who don’t know you even more tense than they would normally be anyway.