Saturday, October 6, 2012

Benji... at Wal-Mart

There are a multitude of reasons why moms should just never take average, ordinary children shopping at Wal-Mart.

Take those reasons and compound them over a year's time.  There you shall have the factual data which would provide you with adequate proof of why you just should never take Benji to any public places -- let alone Wal-Mart.

It is Saturday.  College football day.  Big whoop.  I'm sorry.  I realize there are so many idolizing fans who worship the pig skin.  I just don't happen to be one of them.  Frankly, I couldn't give a flying flip less about a bunch of jocks in tight pants jumping on one another.  Granted, I'll watch a game from time to time but my life and my fun and my Saturdays aren't prone to revolving around ANYTHING that even remotely has to do with football.

However there is a pig head in my house.  I mean, a pig-skin head.  Not a skin-head... let's just make that clear from the get-go.  Stated differently, I have a football fanatic in my home.  (That's somewhat of an understatement, just so we are being honest.)

I needed to go to the store.
I said I was going to the store.
I received "the look."

I know this look quite well.  He receives it daily the instant he walks in the door.

At first, I didn't care.  However, I'm not a fan of the backlash that generally brings (even if I imagine it) so I chose to take Mr. Benji with me.  Mistake number one.  Your gut told you NOT to take him with you.  LISTEN TO YOUR GUT.

However, I had a set grocery list.  It wasn't that long.  I'm supermom.  I can do this, right?

Unfortunately, everyone who regularly does household shopping knows that when you haven't been to the store in a while and you're making a short list just to get you through a couple DAYS you are BOUND to see and pick up the things that forgot to make it upon said short list.  I firmly believe Wal-Mart's livelihood depends upon lack of planning like this, right?

So, I set out with Benji in the cold and realized it was now starting to sprinkle.  Oh boy.  A two-year-old, the rain, the cold, the wind and Wal-Mart.  What could POSSIBLY go wrong?!


Brace yourselves, it gets better.

In the grocery store parking lots, I'm not one to drive around for a close space.  My legs work jsut fine.  So, I park far enough out but still near a buggy collection corral.  I grab a cart so that I could insert the buggy cover, the kid, get him settled and review my list.  The wind is whipping something fierce.  He's cold.  He's fussy.  The cart seems to pull a little .... No, it pulls -- a LOT.  It pulls so hard to the left that it's nearly impossible to steer the damn thing.  I then think to myself, "Self, let's just walk to the front and DRAG it."

But oh, no no no... little Benji wasn't having that.  He reaches around to my sleeve and says, "Mommy, no no no no.  Here.  Come mere."  He wants me at the back of the cart pushing.  Trying to steer this thing is certainly a feat of strength worthy of something at the Festivus celebration I tell ya! It's definitely talent to push this cart which continually tries to make a 45 degree left-hand turn around the world.  It's an intense work-out to say the least just pushing this empty cart...And here we go... off to fill it.

Only, you can't.  You can't fill a cart with Benji.  If it's within reach -- it's his.


We proceed to the pharmaceutical area.  He wants, "summa dis."  I grab some aspirin for Andy, "I hoed it."  So I hand it to him.  All right.  Give him a distraction and he's good.  I've got this.  We are going to be okay.  I pull out the list and try to do a quick scan.  He grabs my list, "My paper."
I grab it back, "MY paper and do NOT grab ANYTHING from MY hand."  I start to push off and nearly run a blue hair off the path.  This cart is deadly.

We walk through the clothing department.  I stop and admire the two piece fleece Batman pajamas and try to explain the bat signal to Benji.  "I hoed it."  I knew better.  We moved on.

Next we went to the baby section to get a fresh box of butt covers.  Have I mentioned that I'm SOOOOOO ready for this kid to be toilet trained I can't even see straight?  So, I grab a $35 box of those and put them on the bottom.  Off we go to conquer the rest of the store.

Dairy -- milk, cookie dough (truth, I don't always make them from scratch and sometimes I don't care that I don't always make them from scratch), yogurt for the kids, yogurt for me, cheese sticks, eggs.

That was easy.

Detergent aisle.  Scoop up some laundry detergent and that's when it starts.  Benji starts trying to perfect his newly acquired talent -- spitting.  He hasn't quite mastered it.  I TRY to ignore it because, generally, if kids do things that annoy you and you ignore them... they stop.  That's not the case with Benji.  He does things until you completely redirect his attention or until he finds something else (generally) MORE annoying to do.  So, he began to spit.  First it was the small sputters as if you have a dog hair or something on your tongue you're trying to spit out.... Patrons start to walk down the aisle.  I stop pushing the cart and try to lean in and tell Benji to stop spitting.  He spits on me.  I cover his mouth.  He thinks it's funny.  So now, I have chocolate milk spit dripping down my hand.  I wipe it on my leg.

We move on.

This lasted about three aisles and I think he grew as tired as my arms did while trying to block his mouth with one hand and still maintain a straight line with my defective cart which I'm now having to push and steer with one hand as other customers pass.  My arms grow shaky by the 7th aisle.  What a workout!

Either he ran out of saliva, grew bored of spitting but he chose, instead, to start barking at me.  Then it was saying, "HIIIIIIII" to everyone that was within earshot.  Regardless of if they responded or not, he would bark.... growl.... scream... you name it.  I'm fairly certain by the next two aisles, most everyone in the west side of the store thought there was a child with Tourette's Syndrome in my buggy.  What a nightmare.

We keep passing the same few people in opposite directions following the same pattern in the store; he develops a rapport with some of the gentlemen.  They think he's funny.  I'm clearly trying to make it go away.  Haven't you ever read the signs at the zoo?  "Don't feed the animals?"  The same rules apply to children -- don't encourage this shit!?  Can't you tell I'm a woman on the brink of madness?  I'm one splittle away from a padded cell and a tub of blue-bell watching I Love Lucy reruns and singing Greased Lightning with my hair slicked back.  I'm oh so very close to being there.

As we walk down the aisle to pick up some sweet pickle relish and breakfast tea I'm realizing how close we are.  He's content with a box of muffin mix (trying to open it thinking there ARE muffins inside) and so while I'm looking one way, he lunges for the other.  Only, I don't see this.  I hear it.  Not from HIM but from his new victim.  He has lunged and grabbed a handful of weave of this black woman's hair and is starting to pull it OUT OF HER FREAKIN HEAD!  It doesn't look like a "real" weave... more just like an attached one but STILL!?!?!  I hear, "OH SHIT!  OH SHIT?!?!"  and my hair spins around like, "Don't use that language in front of my children...." until I see that MY CHILD is CAUSING that language to spew from her lips.  So, now the question is how do I disengage his death grip on her locks without further ripping it out of her head.  I'm apologizing and completely mortified.  I mean, really, what the hell CAN you say in a situation like that?  I'm smacking his hand.... she's grabbing her hair.  It was a finely tuned orchestra of HOLY HELL...  what in the world is WRONG WITH THIS KID?!!?!?!?  He laughs, "You funny."  I'm waiting for her to go postal on me and Benji and she grabs what she needed and doesn't let go of her (or what's left of) her hair.  I just apologized over and again....and then gave him the death stare.  He is unaffected.  I'm annoyed.  He's bored.  I'm flustered.  He's laughing.  I'm embarrassed.  He's reaching for something else.  I'm humiliated.  He can't reach it and becomes irritated.

I regain my wits about me and then I realize that I'm at a pivotal spot in my shopping trek.  I can attempt to finish zip up the frozen food aisle to get the few veggies I need and then make a dash for the produce aisle or just leave.

I shoot for the frozen food section.  He opens Every.Single.Door.He.Can.Touch.For.As.Long.As.He.Can!!!!

Why do I have him so close to the doors, you ask?  Because there are OTHER people besides me trying to steer their buggies down the aisle.  So, there he is with his hand on every single freezer door he can reach.  I give up.  We head to produce... or should we just leave?

Why would I leave at this point?

Because once I start packing in produce, anything in the cart he can reach is fair game.  He knows this.  This is his favorite time to be grocery shopping.

My grapes become projectiles.  Not once.  Not twice.  Three times.  Clean up on aisle 1.  My box of organic greens.... hurled a good 5 feet.

I gave up.

We headed to the check-out line.

He still is barking at people.

I think I've tuned out completely.  Someone needs to medicate this moron.  (And by "moron" I mean me as in the idiot who thought it a good idea to take a two-year-old to Wal-Mart on a Saturday night.)

Josh phones me asking me to take him to the movies tomorrow.  The only thing that comes out of my mouth is, "I'm standing in the check-out line at Wal-Mart.  I'm pissed.  It's not the best time to ask me for anything."  He says okay and immediately hangs up.  Smart kid.

Realizing the time, I stop in at Subway and pick up Benji a pizza.  He has to hold it.  I know he's going to toss it.  At this point, I'd scrap it off the ground and still feed it to him.

I pull his hoodie up, head out into the bitter wind and load him up in the car.  Load the groceries.  Head home.  And then I wonder.... what in the hell I did to deserve this.

Then I think.... what great blog fodder.  Valerie, it's your turn next.  I'm good for the next few weeks!


chksngr said...

Oh, I'm laughing so hard at the imagined face of the poor woman with the weave!!! Seriously great post!!!

Alexis AKA MOM said...

Oh hun I'm sorry I'm laughing but I've been there! But on Benji's defense there are some ppl in Walmart that could do good with a grape or a pizza to the head :)