Frank and I got to go on an exciting shopping trip to Costco last night. WOOHOO! I love that place. We bought only things we needed, such as pork, chicken, chai (for Frank who loves chai and has many fond memories of drinking this delectable drink), quiches (for when we have guests), Listerine mouthwash (for when we have guests), a box of 64 Always Maxi Pads with Wings (regular flow variety, just in case you were wondering), a bag of chocolate chips (for when I make cookies–a definite necessity) and this awesome spinach pasta (yum!). Our trip was going well until I spot something out of the corner of my eye. There–with a heavenly light shining upon it–was something I immediately lusted after. Glimmering in this light which was heaven-sent, next to 80lbs of paper and gallons of mayonnaise, resting on the shelf over the 14lb bag of shredded cheddar cheese–was a sleek case filled with 48 sparking gel pens. FORTY EIGHT you must be yelling right now, shocked that there could be so many beautiful, heartbreaking colors in this world. Forty-eight, I say to you. Perhaps you are in a cold sweat that I might be in possession of such glorious pens. Perhaps you are turning hunter green with envy. Perhaps you are plotting my demise so that you, too, could have such pens.
Envy no longer. I do not own such beautiful pens. I merely covet them.
Last night, as the autumn night became cooler, the sky darker and the world just a little less loving–my husband said words that stained my pure, innocent heart. He said, “No, we don’t need those pens, gosh Emily! No no no!!”
I won’t lie to you, I won’t tell tall tales. I won’t tell you I took this news well. I won’t tell you that I didn’t beg and plead. I won’t tell you that I didn’t pull aside SEVERAL Costco employees, ganging up on my husband to change his mind. “No no no” he said. “For my birthday???” I asked, my lower lip jutting out sadly, my eyes looking up to his cold, hard face.
“Em, we have to get going. Costco closes in 10 minutes,” Frank said sternly. “Sir, can’t you buy her the pens??” asked well-meaning Costco employee, Ed. Then Ed leaned over and whispered, “You should throw a tantrum. I see it all the time. Five year olds on the ground, kicking and screaming. Very effective. Unless…” He paused. “What??” I asked, desperate for any advice. “Unless he’s a walker-awayer.” A what? “A walker-awayer.” What is that? “You know, the parents that pretend that the screaming child isn’t theirs. The ones that look at the child with contempt and seem to ask the question, ‘Who is raising this child? They should be put to death!’ And before you know it, they’re over at the meat counter.” Ed shook his head, dismayed. “He looks like a walker-awayer.”
Frank, who had left me standing in the middle of the store, clutching my case of 48 amazing colors, was now on a mission to find one more much-needed item. I sullenly returned the pens to their shelf.
Maybe next year. Maybe next year.