Wednesday, February 28, 2007

The Cheap Kind

I was in our local grocery store the other day, and I passed the same woman four times in four different areas of the store. Not too surprising - it's a relatively small place - but what really surprised me (and ultimately got on my nerves) was that she was looking for the same item all four times that I passed her. She was with her mom and kept shouting (though the women were standing so close that their elbows were touching), "Ma, I need the cheap bacon. Where's the cheap bacon? It's gotta be the cheap kind." Every time I passed her, she said the samething - verbatim.

Just as I was walking towards the front of the store to the checkout lines, I passed the couple again - the fourth and final time. The daughter had a package of what I can only assume was "the cheap kind" of bacon in her hand, and as she was placing it in her cart, she looked at me. I smiled politely and said hello as is customary in a small town, and she thought twice about resting the package in her cart. She held it up in her right hand and patted the side of it with her left, saying to me:

"Always get the cheap kind, sweetie. It's the one thing you learn as you get older."

We parted ways, and I let the advice marinate for a minute while I placed my items on the conveyer belt. Does "the cheap kind" apply to other instances in life besides fatty meat products? Should I be searching for cheap men? Cheap beer? Cheap hair products? And of all the things I hope to learn as I grow older, why should thriftiness appear at the top of my list?

Her simple statement aroused many questions upon further introspection, but one thing remained clear:

Of all the things I buy generic... raw, graded meat from the underbelly of a pig will never be one of them.


Phil said...

I'm worried about you, Becky. All your posts lately are about mice and pig meat. Why don't you write about Jose from Tire Barn? He was a nice young man - definitely not cheap - and he's very concerned about your Vandura.

Becky said...

I know, Phil. I really miss Jose. It was nice of him to show so much concern regarding my Vandura... his courtesy calls were always welcomed.

He was quite a handsome devil, that one.

Steve said...

Becky - as you know I'm a bit of an idea man . . . I think you just started your new book, "All I Really Need to Know I learned at Pic-N-Save in Rensselaer".

Chapter 1. Cheap Meat.