• Amber Shockley

Friends, I am truly a sinner in the hands of an angry God.


In this time of pandemic, I have started ordering groceries online and picking them up. It is so convenient and quick, I'll probably be doing this even after the pandemic. I've already threatened to wear my mask for the rest of my life.


Have you seen the diagrams showing how far spit particles travel? I don't know how I'm supposed to just go back to some dream world where I pretend I'm not being covered in a fine spray of strangers' spittle.


Side story: My local grocery store has two floors. It also has a wine bar. The wine bar is up a flight of stairs on the second floor. Please, make that make sense.


Granted, there is also an elevator, but still. How many people that belly up to a grocery store wine bar are set up to make the best choices for themselves?


Anyway, I've been ordering my groceries online and picking them up so that I don't have to fuck with people, or second floors, or wine bars.


One down side is that you have to let someone else shop your groceries for you. You have to give up control. You have to accept help.


The anus twitches at the very thought.


Also, you may get a call before you go to pick up your groceries letting you know that a couple things weren't in stock. This is somehow worse than going and finding out for yourself that it's not in stock.


First of all, I can curse an empty shelf. I can stand there and silently curse my entire surrounding community, in my head. I can curse the CEO of the grocery store. I can curse the gods that mock us. I can't, or rather, I won't, curse the store worker on the other end of the phone. So, I don't get that release.


Also, if I find out that something is missing while I'm in the store, I can regroup and replace it with something else. This involves a process of calming down and accessing my rational brain.


But when they called to tell me that they didn't have the Entenmann's pop'ems glazed donut holes I wanted, I didn't have the time or space or access to regroup emotionally and move forward in that moment.


Also, ultimately I don't think it would have been appropriate to ask if she could a) check again b) tell me what other glazed donut hole options they might have or c) list out their available selection of cookies and cakes.


So I had to just sit there with my phone in my hand, devastated. Of all things, the donut holes.


Not just that, friends. I'm leaving something out.


There were two items that were out of stock that day. You know about the donuts.


The other item was chocolate milk.


Imagine it, friends. Imagine the delight of donut holes and chocolate milk that I was about to conduct for myself.


The gods envied me that day. The gods envied me, and they reached down and took this small bit of happiness away from me.


I've had many a therapist try to train my brain to look on the brighter side of life, to not always expect the worst to happen. But again and again, I learn: Don't count chickens. Or donuts. And I've learned resilience from my pessimism. I truly do feel better prepared to climb the mountain than, say, someone who didn't anticipate any boulders hurtling toward them and were completely lambasted.


What I'm saying is, keep climbing the mountain toward your donuts. Just, expect the boulders.


P.S. I went to a different store and got a dozen Krispy Kremes. OG...original glazed.

© 2020 by Amber Shockley.