Letting out a soft grunt while straining to lift a jar of pickles nearly half again my size, I remembered to bend my knees to protect my back. I hate giant wholesale clubs. Store aisles shouldn’t be wider than the street I live on. Worse yet, it was construction day and a large part of the cereal section was now inaccessible. Grizzled highway workers shooed patrons to the side of several orange cones as a large asphalt machine rolled over a lone box of Cracklin’ Oat Bran. CRUNCH.
As much a hated the place, leaving was even worse. I paid for my items, and moved to the store’s exterior doors. Feeling once again as if I were about to sneak across a former Soviet state’s boarder, I prepared to flash my photo ID. Tall fences and barbed wired forced shoppers to funnel through a single checkpoint area, and a fascist-looking guard wearing a neatly pressed store uniform and brandishing a TASER, paused each would be exit-er to check identification. I suspected wives and children had been lost this way.
As I loaded the car of pickles onto the flat bed of my neighbor’s borrowed truck, I couldn’t help but emit a thoughtful sigh of relief. Well, maybe it was more of a grunt, I really don’t remember which. Either way, I was nearly halfway home before my pulse finally stabilized and a thought had finally occurred to me: shopping shouldn't need a cover story.