After absconding from work early today, and sneaking in a short 3 hour nap, followed by a session at the gym, it was time to do the needful.
We needed groceries. At the very least, we needed food for tonight’s dinner.
On initial consideration, and from the environmental data collected from my walk to the gym, we thought we would take a nice stroll over to the local grocery store. The 15 minute walk would do wonders. It was, after all, a beautiful night out and we had plenty of time to make the 11 pm closing. And walking is cardio, right?
Stepping outside, Mother Nature had other ideas for us. It was raining. And by raining I don’t mean the gentle raindrops that fall delicately from the sky, embracing their momentary suspension before they tenderly caress your upturned face, joy abounding. I’m talking about those fat drops that come at you bro. The ones that sting and burn. That, in days gone by, would have torn and scratched at the sides of limestone buildings with their acid bite.
Now usually that wouldn’t have been a problem but today was White Friday. And that means I was wearing my favourite white limestone shirt because who knows who you may bump into in the produce aisles. So it was decided – we would drive.
Upon arriving at the store, it was fairly quiet, the last hour before closing usually is. We made our rounds of the perimeter and collected the essentials for dinner, or at least the stuff we didn’t already have at home: some veggies, some fruits, that random grapefruit bubbly water that’s always on sale. The usual.
Then we made our way to the last of the perimeter staple aisles. The ice cream section.
This is where our Friday night changed.
Today, for some reason, both the Drumstick bars and the Magnum bars were on sale. At the same time. She wanted knobby chocolate Drumsticks. I wanted the big, girthy caramel Magnum. The standoff began. The Drumsticks were $3.00 off. The Magnums, only $2.00 off. There was a difference in end cost of $1.00, in favour of the Drumsticks.
And then the maths…There were 4 Drumsticks in the box but only 3 Magnums. Calculating price per delicious, the Drumsticks had an edge. Not even a slight one. A big tasty one. What were we to do?
Well, fear not, we did what all responsible adults do. We bought them both. And saved a total of $5.00.
With our basket now full, and averting what could have been a relationship-ending impasse, we made our way to the checkout.
It’s never that easy, though, is it?
As we rounded the corner, it happened again.
But this time, far more deadly in scope with potentially greater disastrous consequences. We found ourselves in a true Canadian Standoff.
There he was, with his product cart, filled to the brim with, as expected, product, ready to replenish all the product which had been depleted during the day. He managed to screech to a halt, mere inches from us, just as we managed the same. The tires of his cart leaving skid marks of the second worst kind. Our shoes, leaving none, but finding purchase on the slick floor. We three, facing each other. A triad.
In that moment, eyes rapidly tracked upwards, connecting. Communicating in the absence of words. It was understood. Then the chorus of voices shattering the silence. Breaking the stillness.
“Sorry” in triplicate stereo. Staccato.
And no one could move. We were fixed. Locked in the battle of ages in the true North, strong and free. And then the voices all rose again. Firmer. Each unyielding. Each one, fully sure in its offering.
“No, I am the sorriest”
“No, it is I who is sorry.”
A true Canadian Standoff. And here we will remain forevermore.
Because no one ever gets the last “sorry” without a fight.