The Annotated Shopping List

imagebot-com-2012042714194724316I never use the last of anything. I will always leave a sip of milk in the jug,  a whiff of gas in the tank and a single sheet of toilet paper on the roll.

It drives my wife nuts but it is what I do.

I can’t help myself.

I grew up in a family of thirteen and learned very early that enormous responsibilities accrue to those who take the last of anything – for it becomes incumbent upon them to replace that which they use the last of.

In other words, they have to go to the store.

In a large family, there is no such thing as going to the store for one item. If you slip up and are forced to go shopping, a cascade of wants and desires suddenly befall you. You will spend the remainder of the day pecking among the grocery shelves for the oddest of articles.

I don’t mind going to the store. Really, I don’t.  I don’t mind the endless scavenger hunt.  I don’t even mind the cryptic grocery lists.  But what I do mind, and what I have always minded, are the annotations.

Here is the list handed to me this morning.

  • Milk: I know we have a gallon but even though you said you didn’t drink out of the jug, I saw you do it and that’s gross. And for pity sake, check the freshness date for once.
  • Bananas: Make sure you buy the regular ones this time. Last time you bought the expensive organic bananas. Be careful, they mix them up. Check the label.
  • Yogurt: My kind, not yours. Mine is in the Greek Low-Fat yogurt in the blue container. Last time you got the wrong stuff. I had to feed it to the cats at my parent’s grain bin site, even they turned up their noses at it. Imagine that!
  • Hamburger: Don’t grab the first thing you see. You say you don’t but you know you do.  If it is already brown, don’t buy it.
  • Snob Coffee: You are almost out and I don’t want to hear your howling in the morning. BTW, why you can’t drink regular coffee like everyone else? A tub of Folger’s would last you a year. Think about it.
  • Cheetos: Make sure you get the baked ones. Check for the word “baked”. If you can’t find the word on the package, don’t buy them.
  • Orange Juice: Check for the blue label that says “Calcium”. Yes, I know we have a full jug but you can’t keep adding water to it for weeks.
  • Diet Caffeine-Free Mountain Dew: If you bring back any other variety of soft drink, you will be watching the grand-kids all day.

My reaction?

“Let’s use what we have before we buy more.”

Author: Almost Iowa

44 thoughts on “The Annotated Shopping List”

  1. HAHA! I have never seen an annotated shopping list, and I love it (in all its annoyance”. At least you have something to read 🙂 new to your blog but definitely following

  2. I used to swear that my parents didn’t use toilet paper often, because every time I went to visit, there were just a few sheets left on the roll. Off to the store I trudged. But then I realized that maybe they invited me over to do the shopping, hah.

  3. Hey Greg; Andrew here from what I’m sure is a very far off memory of your time at the BCA. I couldn’t remember your email address, but I could remember you’d blog url. Hope retirement is treating you well; I’ll have to look back through your posts to see how your septic saga ended.

    1. Hey Andrew, glad to hear from you. We sold the house with the septic mound, so that is all behind us. Did you build a cabin on your land up north?

      1. Hey Greg,
        We haven’t started on any structure yet. We just finished with the main lot clearing, we had hired a local guy to do most of that.


  4. I try to send directions with my husband’s shopping list.
    “Chili sauce: look in the aisle with the spaghetti”
    Otherwise he tends to come home with half the list and the claim that he “couldn’t find” what I sent him for.

    1. I try to send directions with my husband’s shopping list.

      That is a must. Supermarkets put things in the weirdest places. I was a single dad for quite a few years and learned the in’s and out’s of shopping (and cooking, and cleaning, and kids throwing up in the middle of the night), so none of these things are a mystery.

  5. Ha, ha, good one. I sometimes annotate lists before giving to my husband, on those occasions when he goes to the grocery (it’s usually me).

    1. Goodness, maybe I live a sheltered existence but I have never seen milk in a bag. However, where there is a will, there is a way, and I am always up to new challenges.. 🙂

        1. We were thinking of getting a cow but thought better of it. They do home delivery but they do it every day, every single day and you have to be there for it. I like fresh milk but not that much.

        1. Being the geek that I am, I had to look this up. The most knowledgeable and indisputably the most accurate (and truthful) source of information, Wikipedia, says this

          Some dairies in the United States used the bags in the 1980s, but today are confined mainly to regional convenience store chains with in-house dairies such as Kwik Trip in the Upper Midwest and other boutique dairies.

          Wow! Does that make us special or what!

      1. This WAS a good post. I smiled. Yet, I…

        Oh, heck. You write a humor blog and I’m about to rant, so just skip over it. Good post, Greg.

        (1) If I spotted you drinking from the bottle or carton, I would spike it. And you’d have it coming,. The same folk who think anti-vaxxers are ignorant can be okay depositing their bacteria into a shared rapid growth medium. Not only gross, but potentially dangerous.

        (2) The same guy who goes apoplectic when a tool-unfamiliar female holds out the wrong socket from the graduated ones not even kept neatly by size, but in a haphazard jumble mixing metric and non– That guy will claim, straight-faced, that he can’t distinguish one brand or type of yogurt from another. Give me a break. It’s solely ’cause he chooses to put 0 attention toward “girl stuff” not important to HIM. Every guy who drinks beer sure knows EXACTLY which type of Bud or Heine or St. Pauli Girl’s or micro brewery ale he favors–truth? And his woman knows it too. Because, in my opinion, the average she is more thoughtful than the average he.

        1. (1) If I spotted you drinking from the bottle or carton, I would spike it. And you’d have it coming,.

          It is the story of my life. I am stalked by karma.

          (2) The same guy who goes apoplectic when a tool-unfamiliar female holds

          Scooter has a similar complaint. He has invested considerable effort in learning rudimentary English, like “sit”, “stay”, “come”, and “quit drooling on me”, while I have never bothered to understand what “Woof, woof, bark, woof, woof” means. [Squirrel at two o’clock]

          But just to prove that this is not a guy thing, my wife does not habla his lingo either.

          1. I like you bunches, so will laugh–while ignoring that your adorable and funny response reduced the significance of what I had to say and its source.

            “Eppur si muove– ingiustamente.”, smart boy. Or dog.

            1. You know that everything I write is fiction – grounded of course in the stragglehold of absolute fact.

              In reality, she has always had her milk (skim) and I have always had mine (whole). She just thinks that my habit of drinking out of the jug is gross. I do a lot of gross things. When company comes, we serve them skim. 🙂

              1. You know that I cannot seem to grow past this permanent freeze the almost-30 years with a soul-vampire placed on my heart. I believe I shall forever remain in permanent over-reactive mode.

                (He did drink and eat out of fridge containers, and modelled for the children disdain at my protests–at least I was wise enough to stop protesting early, since he took only delight in this.)

                Your own container? Slurp it up through your nose, for all I care.

                1. You know that I cannot seem to grow past this permanent freeze the almost-30 years with a soul-vampire placed on my heart.

                  It’s like all kinds of things come rushing into my head to say. I’ve got oodles of wonderful advice and soothing words……but yeah, I got the same frost burn.

                  Most of what I write, I write for my wife. I do it to brighten up her day…. and as long as I am doing that, it brightens mine.

                  1. Big weepy eyes here. Happy for you both. Petty and self-pitying enough to have some envy, too–but only a very small amount outweighed by the happiness.

                    1. Well, it is not all happiness. She treats me cruelly. She yells at me when I fart in public. She won’t let Scooter sleep with us, the list is endless (and will be covered in future posts). 🙂

  6. OMG! Love the annotations on the list! What a hoot! And my guys are famous for leaving 1 sheet on the paper towel roll next to the kitchen sink. Up until then, they pull yards of it at a time to dry their hands – sinful really – but then when there is one sheet left, it could remain for days…. Not sure how they dry their hands, but nobody wants to replace the roll – and they usually don’t even have to go to the store – just the pantry! OIY VAY! I feel a post ranting LOL!

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