Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Thanksgiving Wegmans Hunger Games

Not today, Wegmans. Because today you are Thunderdome.
A lady named Paula Raymond-Trafton (who lives in my town but I've haven't met her yet) wrote this post after going to Wegmans yesterday to do her Thanksgiving grocery shopping. I went today. It was INSANITY. But then the cashier carded me and that made it all OK. 

So if you've had to deal with the ridiculousness that is grocery shopping pre-Thanksgiving, you will enjoy this:

Sports Booth, with live feed

Bob: We’re here at the Mid-Atlantic Turkey Open, one of the biggest events of the year for competitive shoppers.   Candy, what are we seeing?

Candy: Well, Bob, we’re in Virginia at the Fairfax Wegmans interior. The Qualifying Round in the Parking Lot finished a few minutes ago, and our top two contestants are neck and neck.

Bob: Yes, and what a pair they are! From Long Island, the reigning Tri-State champion Rennie Berbiglia came in a clear first in the Parking Qualifiers, jamming her Yukon into a clearly marked Compact space in the garage. She shimmied out of her custom sunroof and got inside in time to nab one of the smaller, more maneuverable carts. But, Candy, I see she’s in five-inch-heeled boots. Won’t that slow her down?

Candy: Not at all, Bob.  Those boots, along with the extremely tight Versace jacket, demonstrate her pain tolerance and commitment to style. She’ll get extra points from the judges for those. The excessive jewelry is a regional affectation, and you’ll notice she has gone for the six wide gold bangle bracelets, in spite of the potential restriction on her grasp. 

Bob: Opposing her, we have Carolyn Musgrave from South Carolina.

Candy: Carol Lynn.

Bob: Yes, Carolyn.

Candy: That’s Carol Lynn Musgrave, a long-time Southern reigning champion. She’s got 20 years of experience on Rennie, and today she’s deploying sensible shoes to lower her center of gravity.  Combined with the church bulletin protruding from her purse, she has clearly telegraphed her strategy for the day. Now, Bob, Carol Lynn doesn’t fare well in the team events. Other teams have learned they can sacrifice one team member to ask about her grandchildren and she loses critical points to the time delay. But in the individual event, Carol Lynn is a shark.

Bob: But she looks so sweet! I don’t think Rennie has anything to worry about.

Candy: Just wait, Bob.

Bob: Let’s go to the live floor feed, where we see the first real obstacles. In the first aisle, we see Rennie barreling down the aisle and Carol Lynn REACHES directly in front of her for a can of mushroom soup! OUCH! That was quite a hit by Rennie, but no foul has been called.

Candy: That’s right, Bob. For this Mid-Atlantic event, both New York and Southern rules apply, significantly broadening the range of allowable tactics. In this case, Rennie snarled “Excuse Me!” just before ramming Carol Lynn. In New Yorkish, “Excuse Me,” means, “Move your ass before I knock you on it,” and can be used before many tactics that are clearly illegal in the Southern competitions. Rennie advances, and Carol Lynn is delayed.

Bob: Carol Lynn is shaken, but not down. As they approach the cranberry sauce, Rennie successfully grabs the last can of whole cranberry-orange sauce!

Candy: Ah, but Carol Lynn drops an “Oh, Honey,” significantly reducing her losses. And they’re on to the bread crumbs, look, look – yes! Carol Lynn issues a perfect Withering Glare! Nice tight lips, slightly raised eyebrows, eyes narrow but not too much, it’s technically flawless. Rennie is shaken but unstoppable.  Rennie throws  a “Go Fuck Yourself,” perfectly legal in this venue. Carol Lynn counters with a “Bless Your Heart,” a devastating blow in a Southern arena.

Bob: And they’re on to the final challenge! The course designers have really outdone themselves this year. After rounding the end of the aisle, shoppers are confronted with a giant pile of hundreds of “fresh” turkeys.

Candy: Yes, Bob, and they’ve gone for the traditional twist. Those “fresh” turkeys were all shipped on a reefer truck set below freezing, and every one of them is at least 75% frozen. No turkey above 18 pounds will thaw before Thanksgiving.  And that pile consists of nothing but 22-pounds-and-up turkeys. That’s right.

Bob: With one crucial exception.  In that mountain of useless turkeys, there is a single 14-pound, completely fresh, perfect turkey. 

Candy: On each of our shoppers’ preset requirements, a “Sixteen Pound Turkey” is listed. It’s up to our shoppers to figure out that there is no sixteen pound turkey, that turkey leftovers are overrated, and that the single 14-pound turkey is the only realistic option.

Bob: They’re diving in. Frantically looking for a usable turkey. Whoops, Rennie balanced one badly and it hit the floor. That’s a 3-point penalty, but she’s so far ahead it doesn’t matter.

Candy: It’s Rennie! Rennie! RENNIE has FOUND the single turkey, that holy grail, and they’ve barely searched through half the turkeys!  
Wait. I don’t believe it, she’s looking around… NO! Bob, she TOOK HER HAND OFF THE TURKEY.

Bob: And Carol Lynn is ON it. The turkey is IN her hands, she’s GOT the turkey, oh, and Rennie is furious. Carol Lynn’s got the turkey under one arm while she continues to search for a sixteen-pound bird that doesn’t exist! And Rennie is STEAMING.

Candy: Watch their faces, Bob, they’re both realizing there IS NO sixteen-pound turkey.  Carol Lynn is starting to turn to her cart, and this contest is virtually ov----

Bob: IT’S NOT OVER! IT’S NOT OVER! Rennie has grabbed the turkey RIGHT out of Carol Lynn’s hands. It wasn’t in her cart, the turkey was still in play, and Rennie HAS THE TURKEY and she’s headed for the checkout!  It’s a blowout, people!

Candy: Carol Lynn has her cell phone out.

Bob: What’s she doing?

Candy: She’s—She’s—Bob,  SHE’S DOING IT. I can’t believe it. She did it. Carol Lynn has never gone nuclear before, but she’s done it this time.

Bob: I don’t understand.

Candy: Bob. Carol Lynn put Rennie on the Prayer Chain.

Bob: What?

Candy: That’s right.  You heard me. Rennie’s headed for her Yukon, but her career is over. 

Bob: But Rennie’s the Takeout Dialing Champion of the Tri-State Area! She can surely outdial Carol Lynn. Rennie is a three-time holder of the “Speed Dialing With Nail Extensions And Gel Manicure” Crown!

Candy: It’s the Power of Jesus, Bob.  Before Rennie can hit the “On” button, a Heavily Edited Yet Factually Correct, Extremely Unflattering Accounting of her actions today, complete with the deployment of the “Go Fuck Yourself,” will be circulated to everyone she knows, including her in-laws.  It will include a kindly request to pray for Rennie as she tries to cope with the stresses of her life. The description will certainly paint her as a self-centered bitch, and if skillfully done, may even call her mental stability into question. 

Bob: I don’t think this move applies in Long Island.

Candy: You’re right, Bob, it doesn’t. But Rennie’s husband is from Tennessee. If Rennie wants to stage a comeback, she’ll have to attend a Wednesday Night Bible study with her mother-in-law for at least five years, or through the birth of two children.  For a Long Island Catholic, this is a career-ending event. Rennie has won the Mid-Atlantic Turkey Open, but she’s lost everything else. 

Bob: It’s a sad day, Candy.  Rennie Berbiglia: Turkey Open Champion and Pariah. Signing off, we’re Bob and Candy.

(c) Mommyland Blogs 2013

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