What a weekend!
What with attempting to finish my wall paneling, an unscheduled visit to the hospital (a mission of mercy, not my own multitudinous ailments) and various other excitements too numerous to mention, I was not expecting late Sunday afternoon to be brought so low.
My better half and I had made a trip to “Bunnings” (for the non-Australian this is simply the Aladdin’s cave of hardware and its massive warehouses of wonder can be found throughout the land.) to purchase a scrubbing brush and 12 metres of decorative beading.
As I debouched from the car I noticed that I had done something that I had never thought I would do before.
I HAD FORGOTTEN TO CHANGE OUT OF MY SLIPPERS!
While they are rather smart slippers in a charming electric blue napped stripe, it was what they symbolized that made my heart ask.
“Was I becoming a ‘Sad Old Man‘?” (henceforth referred to as SOM)
My conscience replied
I mentioned my transgression to my nearest and dearest.
A pitying shake of the head helped confirm my suspicions.
I then stood back from myself (metaphorically of course) and had a good look at the object before me.
In my haste to purchase hardware (surely that in itself is enough to mark me as a SOM) I had rushed out the door clad in a pair of old jeans covered in paint, a rag of a t-shirt and an old “hoodie” also paint stained and looking like I had mugged a tramp to obtain it.
There was nothing for it…I had to have that beading!
So in we tramped and I suddenly felt I had entered a new world. All my previous visions of myself as a smart man about town were grovelling in the mire and I could almost feel the look of pity on the faces of other customers as I wandered about like a sad, paint spattered Santa who had let him self go after a particularly trying Christmas.
I was horrified to find myself seriously contemplating buying a huge rolling tool storage unit for $895 and quickly ran for the beading and then fled for the checkouts.
I am afraid to say that Karma was in attendance as I had, in the past, unkindly laughed at a few online collections entitled “people of Walmart” featuring some particularly astonishing examples of human costume.
As I went through the automated checkout a real, live shop assistant emerged and counted the number of sticks I was buying and checked my entries on the machine! They then asked to check my beloved’s hand bag!
Not only must I look like a SOM but obviously I was exhibiting all the hallmarks of a “Shoplifter”!
I was “A people of Walmart”!
Thankfully neither of us had compulsively hoarded some picture hooks or bags of manure on our person so we were allowed to pass. The shop assistant had the good grace to comment on the lovely colour or my wife’s handbag (she probably thought we had stolen that too!)
And so we loaded up the car and took our SOM, paint stained, beslippered way back home.
As we sat wrapped in our crocheted rugs, sipping out milky coffees that night I announced to the world…
“I refuse to become a SOM!”