Sunday, March 13, 2011

Groce, Dude

The feeling of excusing ourselves for long writing absences seems to have become commonplace. We should start every post with a Simpsons-couch-gag style apology. Today's flaky excuse? One half of the Sometimes (sadly) has left Chicago for literal pastures, but things have now settled. So, let's get blogrolling.


Just as the Bulls and the Sheens begin to embrace the word "win", the season that starts with the same three letters is making its well earned exit. Snow is about to enter its annual "why do I even bother?" phase, and the Sun, having finally lost those extra Holiday pounds, is feeling hot again. Soon, attractive women will begin to come out of hibernation, and men around the world will rejoice.

National Geographic Presents: The Cave of Babes

Yep, everything is really coming up Derricks.

Here's usually where you'd see a negative twist brought upon by a positive introduction, but damnit all if things aren't feeling just a bit better these days.

I mean, it's almost picnic season! The time to sit in the middle of an emerald colored park, on top of a plaid blanket with frisbee in tow, is nearly here. Can't you just smell the games of pick up badminton about to end with heated arguments regarding the meritsof Pauly D's DJ certification? It's the type of family atmosphere that can only end once the cabs are, in fact, here.

In true MTV Cribs circa 2004, and even Yogi Bear fashion, let us dive into heart of our day out -- the pic-a-nic basket.

You've got your sandwiches, ranging from egg salad to chutney. Your wines, coca colas, and more wines. Your grapes, nuts, grape-nuts, and Chex Mix. Oh yeah, you've got it all.

Along with all of these delectables by your side there is, however, a belief that the food you've brought with you is going to be consumed now-ish. Fresh sandwiches don't tend to do well in the real world. Ever seen one try to do it's taxes? No? Wait one second. Oh, Tom!

Why you should always save the pickle for last

My mom has always been in charge of the picnic menu, and lately I've been missin' her kitchen. Having recently moved away from Mother Jones' fabled cooking, I've found myself in food limbo. The high quality nourishment that I'd become accustomed to has suddenly disappeared, and the old adage of working to put food on the table has become an ironic punch in the jejunum.

The circumstances have led me to my local grocery store. It is here that I've discovered something. Given a lack of unoccupied fridge space, and a weakness for gimmicks, my shopping cart mocks the world's dietitians.

Let me break it down for you, as a list of my "must buys" at the grocery store:
- Flamin' Hot Cheetos, the perfect compliment to a Subway sandwich.
- Diet Coke, all the brand name without any of the flavor.
- Scooby-Doo and/or Spongebob fruit snacks, they're gelatin free!
- Granola bars, mostly just to rationalize the rest.

That's pretty much....oh, and Pretzel M&M's...what I regularly self-checkout. (Just a quick aside, wouldn't it be perfect if all self checkouts had full size mirrors?). During the "payment method" screen, while coming to terms with the fact that secretly we all share a 3rd grader's diet, is when I made a bit of a discovery.

Peeking over, legally, I think, at what's on the conveyor belt for other shoppers, I've found that it's startlingly easy to pick out who shops for one.

Required reading for last week's rose ceremony

Dead giveaways to finding a solo shopper? How's two lists in the same blog post sound?

1) Frozen dinners. These flavorful sodium injections are a mainstay in a lonely man's cart. At least with a name like Michelina, the illusion of eating with a woman is there.

2) Giant bags of miscellaneous chips. If you're thinking that no one pony tailed man could possibly eat all of those chips in a single sitting, you'd be right. Mostly, it's for the convenience of having them Xbox-side during fictitious video game sporting events.

3) Hostess brand anything. Sure, Ho Hos and Twinkies have delightfully playful names, but the last time they were enjoyed around people, Billy Madison was trying to trade his banana for a Snack Pack.

Health peanuts of the world, I call on you! If we want supermarket sweeping change to come to our aisles, we're going to need your help. The Sometimes is making a plea to all you attractive women out there to do your part. If you see a bachelor shopping, his cart barren of essential nutrients, place your palm on his shoulder, lean in, and whisper, "you could use some vegetables." Don't be alarmed if everyone around you is aroused... you're just that good.

We're telling you, these sensual messages will be the first great stride towards a leaner country! You can do it ladies -- you have to. The fate of summertime beach bods depends on it.

Checking out,
Tapan Jones

[Art, as always, by Thomas Glass Jr.]
Click to maximize the pictures!

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