Shopping Right

My room mate and I have only one thing that we need do together every week and that is because my bad eyesight prevents me from driving or I would not ever do that one thing with her. If I could drive, I would do the food shopping without her. This time spent together is unpleasant, even on the good days. There was even a year or so when I was so tired of doing it with her that I would walk back and forth to the grocery store twice a week, carrying my groceries, rather than have to be with her. While this made grocery shopping more pleasant it also created more problems because she constantly had to be reminded to purchase the items that were too heavy for me to carry, the most important of those things being cases of water. We consume two or three cases of bottled water every week. We live near what was once a polluted swamp and drinking water from the faucet is not an option. I sometimes feel itchy after just showering in the tap water.

I wake up an hour early on Saturday nights, which is one of her two nights off from work, and we shop. I pay for the groceries in exchange for her driving and then dropping me off at work. Saturday nights I can not take a bus to work and if I do not get a ride from her I would have to pay for a ride. It is a deal that I make with this Devil, but I have accepted it.

More than half of the weeks, she will sit in the car and play with her phone while I do all of the shopping. I actually prefer this because I shop quicker without her and I do not have to endure the displeasure of her company.  I am the one who reads the weekly newspaper advertisements to learn what is on sale and which of the two local supermarkets we should visit that week. I am also the one who clips the coupons to save money on what we purchase. All she does is drive the car.

This past Saturday she decided that we are now only going to shop once every other week. She announced this in the morning before I went to sleep, but I reminded her that this was not a new idea. We have had this argument in the past. There is no good reason for her plan, other than she “Does not want to go”, while I have to explain that different things are on sale every week and some of the food that we buy must be consumed within a week or it will go bad. Some of the food, because one of the sad things about our household is that the three of us rarely eat together. Most of my grocery shopping is for liquids and cleaning products. I also reminded her that she was terrible at shopping on her own and we constantly ran out of things without my contributions. A few times each week we would discover that we had run out of something because she had “Forgotten” to buy it. The bottled water? I would remind her day after day, and she passes the grocery store on her way home from work.

When I woke up, she continued to argue for her bi-weekly trips. It was not really an argument but something that she announced. She is the one driving the car and I can not stop her from being stupid, no matter how much rational explanation I can try and convince her with. She simply does not want to go. What will she be doing during that time? She will play with her phone while sitting on the couch instead of in her car. Her argument was not that she had some conflicting plans that night, which would have been acceptable. I am a reasonable man. She simply does not want to go.

The reasonableness of my being reasonable was pushed past the limit and I told her that the only people who have stupid arguments are stupid people and those of us like me who made the mistake of marrying someone stupid. She is stupid and selfish and in this case she is losing more than she is gaining. A stupid person turns a 30 minute grocery shopping trip into an argument that lasts all night and into the next morning because I work the night shift and sent her angry text messages every half an hour or so and then I was waiting for her at home when she woke up so that I could curse her out some more.

When you enter into an argument, you have to be ready for the person you are arguing with to take it to the extreme. Is her bi-weekly shopping plan important enough to her that I have to replace her? I will cancel our co-living arrangement. When threatened with that, she backed down.

The punch line? I did not really need to go shopping this week. The only thing that we need are extra large garbage bags and they are not even on sale. Everything else can wait.

Don’t tell her that. Or, maybe she should know?

I was fighting just because I was offended by her argument and the way she tried to institute a new rule for me to live by.