Every Once In A While I Celebrate

_20140802_183600

Celebrate? Why celebrate? Well, I enjoy getting stuff for nothing, to me that is a victory worth celebrating. So, y’all can obviously tell I am going to be talking about Walmart, which is where we choose to grocery shop every 2 weeks. Why? Where we live, their prices are considerably lower in groceries than all the rest of the big box grocery stores. I will make this a short post for now, but will do my version of a “how to” save money post in the future, I have learned a few bad ass tricks over the years, and it all paid off today once again.

Before I begin this short speil, let me just say that we feed a bare minimum of 4 adults and one teenage boy having a growth spurt, so call it five adults for simplicity. We do not buy any meat, but if I do it is some chuck so I can grind it in to make hamburgers and canned tuna and/or canned chicken to make into sandwich spreads. Other than that, our meat (beef & pork) is purchased from a slaughterhouse/butcher in large precut packages. The other meats, such as deer (venison), wild turkeys, quail, prairie chickens, and wild boar, are provided by my son an I as we hunt the different seasons of the year. I have 5 stand up side-by-side freezers that don’t get bare very often. Sometimes, we are lucky and will have some gator meat (from family) and other goodies. 98% of our meat is provided this way annually. Enough about that for now.

Back to Walmart. In our 2 baskets we had everything else which was going to last us for two weeks which includes food, cleaning supplies, toiletries/sundries, and some back to school supplies for my son. Our total, before coupons and sales ads, was $348.88. After including coupons and sales ads our price was $39.31 with tax included. How? Everything that was on the list had a substantial coupon, meaning, as an example, something which cost $2.79 had a $2 coupon. Plus, everything we buy was the name brand and it is the things we use every day. On some things the coupon was actually more than the price of the item. Pretty much if I didn’t buy the school supplies I could have gotten out of there for under $10 like I normally do.

Now, no, this is not a simple way of shopping, but with a little effort, a little leg work, some planning, and a list, it is worth it. Here is the secret how. First, get a Sunday paper (this is when our coupons and ads are included). Second, get online and visit all the brands you use/purchase regularly and print their coupons. Sign up if you need too, its worth it. Third, go to the other stores. Get their current sales fliers, walk their asiles and get the in-store coupons for items. They are usually on or near the product in some kind of dispenser. Fourth, plan your meals for the week or two, make your grocery list based on the meals you will be serving. Put some thought into this, think outside the can or box. Fifth, head to Walmart because every coupon you clipped, printed, or got in other stores are honored. Does this take time? Yes, absolutely, but you get faster as you get better at it.

For people pressed for time, a slow cooker can provide a full meal which cooks on its own while you are at work or doing whatever you do to fill your days. Yes, I did everything the exact same way before I was laid off, but I have been doing it like this for a long time, so my prep time is usually under an hour over a two week period. For for those of y’all thinking we buy everything in bulk, you are wrong. We buy paper towels, toilet paper, soft drinks, and milk in bulk. I buy at least 12 gallons of milk at a time, a couple go in the freezer for week two, and the rest in the fridge. Why? At my house, we consume at least a gallon a day, and it never has an opportunity to go out of date. Like I said in the beginning, I will do a comprehensive post some other time. I will have to give it some thought so it makes sense. As well, if any readers have secrets they would like to share, I’m all ears. Quick sidenote, do not buy your tobacco products or alcohol at Walmart, those things are cheapest at the gas station and liquor store.

I know what y’all are thinking already because of other Walmart posts I have done, nothing has changed, I still hate the service, the slow speed, and the two out of fifty lanes actually having a checker, but my wait is usually worth the savings. Think about that for a while. No, I’m not some crazy extreme couponer either, I just like keeping my money where it belongs, in my wife’s wallet.

_20140802_183629

Stop Asking Me What Color It Is!

question-mark

For those of y’all who weren’t aware, I’m color blind, I suffer from deuteranopia (deu-ter-an-opia) (dü-tə-rə-ˈnō-pē-ə) to be more specific. Before I get into this post I want to give y’all some information that may help you in the future when you encounter person who suffers from color blind/ color deficient vision. Deuteranopia:(also called green-blind). In this case the medium wavelength sensitive cones (green) are missing at all. A deuteranope can only distinguish 2 to 3 different hues, whereas somebody with normal vision sees 7 different hues. Don’t forget that y’all also know how to Google things, but this time I helped y’all out. I don’t get angry easy, I don’t hate too many things (the list is real short), but I draw the line seeing the humor asking anyone who is color blind “what color something is” because it isn’t a game for us, period. We live our lives seeing this beautiful world the way we see this beautiful world and that is the end of that.

Now, I was not born color blind that I know of, or at least not completely according to my mother, but when it actually started I couldn’t tell you. I do know I failed my first driver’s license test because I failed to be able to distinguish the colored number hidden within the colored dots. After a trip to the optometrist it was declared that I was “suffering” from deuteranopia. The optometrist mentioned to my mother that it was probably accelerated a great deal due to some head trauma I had a little less than a year before. So, from age 16 on I have learned to trick my mind into seeing things that are not there. Memorization of certain things helps as well. I make do, as we all do, we do it everyday, not because it is a choice, but it is what it is and that is how we are forced to live.

color-blindness

The times I hate most about being color blind is when someone new finds out. Why? It’s simple, because they immediately, and I mean absolutely immediately, begin asking me to tell them what color this thing is or what color do I see for that thing. Enough is enough. Here is the plain and simple truth, I don’t know what colors y’all are seeing in the first place so any comparison I make is pointless. I vowed, after today, to punch the next person in the face with a chair who asks me what color something is because, unlike for that person, it is not a joke to me. Therefore, my gift will be a chair to the face. Lights out bitches! I consider it rude and very insensitive to not take into consideration that it is a condition and not a choice, and it definitely is not a freaking game of red light green light or simon says.

I do get asked how this affects my daily life overall, in a nutshell, and how do I “cope” with it. Well, first, I don’t look at it as a handicap of any sorts, it’s just how my life is. There are challenges I assure you, but when one gets good enough at interpreting the world around himself it becomes much more easy. As an example, take driving into consideration, all signs, signals, and warnings are in color. It blows my wife’s mind still to this day because I can “tell” what “color” the traffic signal is and she doesn’t get out. All traffic lights are either vertical or horizontal, with the colors either top to bottom or left to right, red always being on top or on the left. So, when one is lit up I can tell which one it is and what I need to do, stop, caution, or go. My problem is single flashing signals because who in the hell knows what color they are flashing.

A few other challenges I have are when I cook, things turn a different color when heat is applied. For example, beef and other red meats I need help discerning when they get “browned” 50% of the time. How to overcome this set back? Everything has a time at a temperature when it begins to transition, so I cook by time and smell mostly. Which is why smoking foods is easy for me. Picking out my own clothes can be challenging. My solution? 98% of the clothes that are in my closet are black in some variation. All of my underwear are black. All of my socks are black. All of my boots and shoes are black. Both of my hats, cowboy and baseball, are black. My watch, wallet, belt, and even my wedding ring are black as well. However, I take my wife’s word for it if she tells me a color looks good on me if we are shopping. Colored or white shirts stand out in my closet trust me. So, y’all might ask if I like the color black and my answer is that the color black is easy. One cannot not mis-coordinate the color black, at least not in my world. I do have my fair share of camouflage as well, but that just goes where I live and what my hobbies are.

So, my advice to any one of y’all who feel your curiosity is warranted, justified, or just cute, just remember how a chair to the face will feel because that is how you make me feel. I’m not here on planet dirt to be someone’s parlor game or freak-show. If y’all want shit like that then go visit your local Walmart for fun. Does it suck being color blind? Not for me because I don’t have anything to compare it to. Last reminder. Chair. Face. Last bit before I close. It has been brought to my attention that the colors on my blog are all jacked up and sometimes it is hard to see. I know this, but that isn’t how I see it.

color_blind_12

Back To The Real World We Go Go

Evil-Smiley-Face

I will admit to everyone, right here, right now, that I avoid Walmart at all costs. I would rather fake my own death so I could move to a non-extradition country if it meant being able to miss all the joys and wonderment of stepping one foot inside any Walmart. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate Walmart, I just hate going in Walmart, parking outside of Walmart, the way Walmart smells, the people who shop at Walmart, and most employees at Walmart, and okay, you caught me, I hate Walmart. I don’t know if y’all have Walmarts where y’all live, I don’t know if y’all have ever seen a Walmart in person, or if all of y’all have even heard of Walmart, so y’all will just have to fallow this story and we can all assume that y’all are fully aware what a Walmart is. My wife knows that I can’t stand going to Walmart for any reason, but last night she asked me to go, and without a single word, I went. Why? Who knows, it wasn’t like she offered me hot sex in the shower or anything. She just smiled at me, called me honey (she always calls me honey when she wants something), and said she would really appreciate it if I were to go to the Walmart for her. Damn.

Apparently she had stopped at the Walmart on her way home from work to get a few things, nothing out of the ordinary about that scenario, we give Walmart quite a bit of money each year. I wish I could claim Walmart as a dependent on my taxes. The reason she stopped in the first place is because my daughter texted her and asked if she would mind stopping and getting her tampons because she was out. While at Walmart my wife must have spotted a squirrel or something and decided to follow it around Walmart, except she missed the entire aisle that sells tampons and other feminine hygiene products. How do I know this factoid? Because she came home without the one reason she went to Walmart, the tampons. Shit happens, right. Now, I’m now stranger to tampons and feminine products, being married (twice) and having two daughters ensured I was always kept in the loop when one or all three of them were bleeding out. As well, I have 10 nieces ranging from (now) 13 – 19 years of age. Seems almost all of them had to have their first period at my house for some odd reason. Maybe I just scare the blood out of them who knows. The most uncomfortable I have ever been was having to show my 13 y/o niece how to use a tampon the first time because her mother was out-of-town and my wife and daughters were with her. They always say that some things can never be unseen, that is pretty high on my list and I have seen so really awful shit.

Anyway, back to my excursion into the local Walmart. I break my own dress-code when I go to Walmart, meaning I don’t where my slip on sandals or anything camouflage. I go dressed like I have a mirror in the house I just left and know how to use it. I know, I’m one in a million that do. What can I say, I care what I look like when I walk out the door. I’m not vain and don’t need to “represent”, but I don’t want to be the one that gets pointed at with someone mouthing WTF? about. Just like going to work, appearance is the first thing another person sees. Why don’t people shopping at Walmart understand that fact, that their first impression that they are leaving behind is not starting on a high note. I know why, because they really don’t give a rat’s ass of a shit to care that much. Sorry, when my people of Walmart faucet gets turned on it takes allot of force to twist that bitch shut. I know, I know, lighten up. Screw that, am I the only one who has ever observed the personal hygiene habits of most of the freaks who hit Walmart? Maybe it is just where I live, we are just a bunch of hillbillies and such. I might need to explore “Why people shop at Walmart looking like shit” in the future. I have done the research so I just hope I can stomach writing about it all. Just had a vurp, not a good sign.

I set off with my mission clear in my head and I will execute it flawlessly. Drive. Park. Tampons. Checkout. Parking lot. Drive home. No eye contact, no observing, and sure the hell not going to touch anything I don’t need to or speak with anyone unless I’m am bleeding out, and then that would be pretty questionable as well. The drive was pleasant, caught every red light with nobody around, the parking lot was packed at Walmart, there were shopping carts everywhere I looked, and as I was pulling into a handicap parking spot up front I noticed this lady (40ish I guessed) running while holding her pants up with one hand and texting with the other hand, simply amazing to watch. Let the games begin my minions! I made the command decision to grab a cart from the parking lot. Good thing I did because there were none to be found as I walked in. Damn it, the lady that was running into Walmart is waiting there like the cart-gods are going to shit her one. Fine, take mine, have a nice day, run along now. I went out to get myself another cart. Wouldn’t you know it, I got the one with the one really squeaky wheel on the back and missing the rubber part of the wheel in the front, bonus.

Intentionally I parked on the grocery side of the store because I wanted to get some oranges. First stop in Walmart and get the very last bag of oranges in sight, lucky me. Right? Wrong, the reason it was still there is because half of them were smashed up and dripping. How nice for me, put those back, lets look for a few single oranges perhaps. Great, they looked good, felt good, so I got three, and two grapefruit too. I decided to go around, way around by way of the back of the store so I could go to the shoe department to get some shoe freshener powder. Done. Out of the corner of my eye I see this rather large woman, when I say large I mean like 300 lbs plus, large, trying on what looks to be like a size 100kkk bra over the top of her faux fur coat. Why? WTF? She had me mesmerized, I was actually silently cheering her on because I knew if she tried hard enough she could get it hooked in back. Wrong, she fails. When she is done, she wads up the 43 yards of bra and tries to stuff it inside a kids size 4 shoe on the shelf. Didn’t make sense to me then and doesn’t make sense to me now, but that’s the way it all went down right there in the Walmart shoe department. Got what I needed, time to roll, well, squeak, well, I was moving nonetheless. Damn Walmart carts!

Next stop, feminine hygiene. I roll up onto the aisle and there are at least 14 women all staring at the tampons and pads like they never seen these amazing little blood suckers in person before. There was even one that had an advertisement “As Seen On TV” stuck on the shelf in front of it. Must not be a channel I watch. I know what brand, size, color, and deodorizer I was looking for, I could see it but couldn’t even get to it. What to do, muscle my way into the crowd of angry-looking women, say pardon me in the two languages I know, or just wait the herd out, maybe one will bleed to death and that will be the break I need. Tic toc tic toc tic toc, 4 minutes is long enough bitches, here I come ready or not. I was rude, I admit it, I reached in front of two of them, they snarled as if they wished to bite my hand or something. As I pulled my hand back with the correct box one of them turned to me, as if to ask me a question, then quickly stopped herself when she realized I was a man. Oh shit, there is about to be some scrapping in aisle 14 and the lone white man is not going to survive, he may be doomed. NOT, I placed the box of tampons in the cart and pushed my way through all the heifers, I have to do the same at the farm, accept my heifers are not so beefy.

I chose to self checkout because I really didn’t need any more assistance or lip from anybody. There are ten, count them, ten self checkout lanes at each end but only ONE is operational and there are a assload of people waiting. Nope, the twenty items or less lane is packed as well. Sombitch! Soon, I found a lone cashier motioning me to come to her lane, fair enough, let’s do this. She was nice enough, she should be greeting people at the door tho, 218 y/o and slower than honey in the winter in North Dakota outside in a drift of snow. Sheeeesh. Everything was cool until she grabbed the tampons, she began to blush and giggle a bit as well. Yea, yea, yea, you old dried up prune, I’m buying tampons. My luck kicks in right here, the fucking boxes bar code won’t scan, 92 tries old woman, and it still wont scan. Double damn! She called it in, someone came, then she left, I waited, she returned because she forgot what the hell she was looking at. Finally, she returns, types some bullshit in to override the price and the register rings up at $119.67. What? now we need an override for the override. Is that my stomach growling? In the end, I paid and got the hell out of the store.

I unlock my car, put the bag in the passenger seat, start the car, look up at the windshield, and see somebodies freaking business card under the wiper. I get out, grab it, toss it down without even looking, get back in, light me a cigarette and go to back out. Well, wait because 4 others are waiting for someone to pull out and can’t see my reverse lights in the dark. Hey, it was daylight when I came in, wasn’t it. Have I been in there that long? Did I lose time somehow, what day is it? Oh look, one of the fucktards is backing up to let me out, how kind. Drove home, got all the red lights except one, bonus time. Went inside, kissed my wife, handed my daughter her tampons, and began to walk away. I hear “thank you daddy” from my daughter. I replied, “anytime babygirl, anytime”. The end. Fuck Walmart! Is it just me or is it true that all Walmarts smell like piss and old people?

Walmart_exterior