You know those days where you somehow end up going to Wal Mart twice? Those are the worst days in the world. I honestly avoid Wal Mart like the plague. Yet I always get roped into a trip for some odd item which could be purchased on Amazon but that would take two days to arrive and time is of the essence.
The first thing that happens when I pull into the Wal Mart parking lot, cars just start throwing themselves at me. I almost get t boned in the parking lot six times. Due to anxiety, I park as far as possible from the store- it’s a ten-minute walk from my car to the store.
Before I’ve even arrived in the store someone begs me for money. I think to myself, ‘stay strong, you aren’t a bad person for saying no.’ Except this homeless person has the cutest dog I’ve ever seen and the dog is wearing a t shirt and has a crown on her head- she’s a princess dog. Inevitably this guy ends up with the twenty in my pocket and I walk into the store cursing how soft I am. Wal Mart is already winning.
I can’t see the back of the store from the front of the store. The depths of this store register as an unknown and I really don’t like that. I stumble through the maze that is Wal Mart for what seems like hours. I’m looking for a tarp to put under the twelve-foot pool my teammate Johan impulse bought at this very same store a week before. I realize I’ve found the tarp! Though I also realize that I’m holding an espresso machine, the game of spike ball, and t shirt that says, “not my job”. Once again, Wal Mart is winning.
I didn’t even think to grab a cart. There is no way in hell I’m going to risk finding a cart now; the odds of finding my way back to this aisle are slim at best. Instead I’m carrying everything back the way I came. I’m literally holding the entire game of spike ball by just my pinky finger- the pain is excruciating. I’m hobbling through the store grimacing and people are looking at me weird.
At the register I buy a Snickers bar and a pack of gum. The second that snickers bar gets scanned, my arm leaps across the counter and grabs it. I almost give the cashier a heart attack with this move and she needs a second to recover. While devouring that snickers bar, half of it drops on the floor. I look at the cashier, her eyes are saying, “don’t do it.” I pick it up and eat the rest in one bite. Anything to avoid that inevitable Wal Mart bonk. If germs had a taste, this second bite would have tasted like bear spray. When the cashier tells me how much I owe, I realize I’ll have to eat spaghetti and oatmeal for the next month to survive.
I pick up my supplies and hobble to the exit. From the exit, I would actually need binoculars to see my car. This calls for a change in strategy.
I’m now wearing the “not my job” shirt and have created a cape out of the tarp. I’ve transformed into some kind of Wal Mart superhero. With the espresso machine held beneath my right arm and spike ball cradled beneath my left- I begin to run. My legs are turning faster than they ever have; and possibly ever will. Then, about thirty rows in, next to a bright green Corolla; something incredible happens. With god as my witness and an incredibly dirty snickers bar as my fuel, I feel my cape tighten around my neck and my feet leave the ground. For just a brief instant, I swear I’m flying.
I get into my car, throw all the shit into the back, then reach into my pocket and grab the pack of gum. I turn on the car and with three taps on my phone, Nora Jones’s discography is playing. I carefully put every piece of gum into my mouth until the pack is empty, then I just violently chew the anxiety away.
A man walks by, the one man who may have witnessed me take flight. I roll my window down. “Hey did you just see that?” He holds his pace and flips me off.
I drive back to my teammates house and park in the driveway. I limp around the corner and through the fence. Ricardo is waiting for me in the backyard and says, “Why is the tarp around your neck?” I stare back at him with my now bloodshot eyes. I don’t respond, I just chew harder on the 24 pieces of gum in my mouth. Ricardo responds, “Well anyways, I guess the pool didn’t come with a pump, so we need to go back to Wal Mart and grab one.”