I can't get away from them! Weirdos are everywhere, unable to fight off the gravitational pull of my ample rumpus. I can sense them behind me, and a visual check reveals that my teacher eyes-in-the-back-of-my-head have not grown vestigial.
I picked up a few items at Save A Lot on Tuesday. Romaine lettuce, milk, bologna, hamburger, two TV dinners, buns, and bread. Plus some cookies and brownies for The Pony. I was halfway down the first aisle, the dairy section, when I heard a cart behind behind me. I glanced around and saw an old man a bit younger than Hick. No big deal.
Moving on to the meat case, I grabbed a pack of thick bologna. Despite the beliefs of many, Hick is not actually FULL of bologna. A bit farther down was the real meat. I took a family pack of hamburger. Hick has asked for "something with hamburger, and mashed potatoes, and macaroni and cheese." He might be carb-loading for a marathon. Those seemed an odd choice of sides. One of them would be sufficient.
Anyhoo... my next move was the paper plates. I parked my cart to peruse the selections. Not that it's expansive, but that I was hoping I was just overlooking what I wanted. Which was the large coated plates with a design on them. Save A Lot has been out of them the last several visits. As they were this time. So I took a smaller version, halfway between the regular size and a cake-slice size.
That Old Man had come up my aisle. That happens. He was stopped beside me. I figured he was wanting some plates for himself. I got out of there, to give him room. Yet he also turned, without taking any plates. I moved to the glass-doored freezer case along the back wall, with TV dinners. They're handy for Hick when he plans to leave before regular supper time to get to the auction early. As I was locating the BBQ Pork with Mashed Potatoes and Corn, I noticed that Old Man with his cart right beside mine AGAIN.
So close, in fact, that I couldn't turn my own cart sideways to open up the glass door. I had to push it forward, almost into the black swinging doors leading to the warehouse portion of the store. I put my two TV dinners in the cart. I couldn't get up the freezer case aisle along the side wall, leading to the bread up front, because Old Man was standing there with his cart.
It was THEN that I noticed Old Man was loaded for bear. He wore a t-shirt with a button-up shirt over it. He'd left the top shirt unbuttoned, with one side tucked behind the HOLSTER WITH PISTOL on his belt.
I don't freak out about shopping on the Old West Frontier. Missouri is a concealed carry state. Every now and then you see weapons. I guess Old Man wanted everybody to know that he was packin', no concealing about it! That's not what makes him a weirdo. FOLLOWING ME, and not picking anything off the shelf where he was standing by me, is what makes him a WEIRDO!
I backed up my cart, and took the next aisle, the chips and salsa and nuts, to make my way to the front bread. Old Man also reversed his cart, taking nothing from the freezer case, and started after me. I glanced over my shoulder again. Old Man continued to the soda/dogfood aisle on the back side of the chips. Where he could have gone initially, instead of following me to the frozen food TV dinners to block my way and select nothing.
Guess I showed HIM! It always pays to be aware of your surroundings...