Thursday, September 28, 2006


It’s awfully cold because of the storm. Earlier, I bought a bottle of vodka – a small one, just enough to keep me warm. I would’ve wanted something dark, but any of the whiskeys in display was more expensive than what I got. I could’ve settled on a bottle of brandy, Empy or GrandMa maybe, for less than 1/10 of the price. But I’m drinking alone. And when I do, I like to do it in style.

Anyway, I am aware of impulse shopping, but I can’t help it. Marketing strategy makes things worse. Essential stuff, like bread, milk, frozen meat and canned goods, are placed out back. You have to pass by all sorts of wares on the way. When I went in the supermarket earlier, the first things I noticed were mooncakes, chocolates and wines – even quezo de bola. Ten minutes later, I got what I needed: cat food, toilet paper, cigarettes, candles, vodka, bread, garbage bags, shampoo and shaving gel. Another ten minutes and my basket was filled with chocolates, potato chips, nuts, conditioner, facial tissue, cookies, aftershave cologne, muriatic acid, floss, wasabi powder, nori, plastic cups (Kira broke my last mug this morning) and chopsticks. I paid 50 percent more than I should have, had I proceeded to the checkout counter immediately.

The storm reminded me of Stephen King’s short story (more like a novella) The Mist. The wind was awful and when it was over, the power was out and trees were lying on the street. Then there’s the supermarket scene. No mist and monsters ever came, nor was there a scary old religious fanatic wanting a blood sacrifice, but I still felt like David Drayton making his last grocery run. I thought of the Mr. McVey character, so I went and bought half a roasted chicken. I headed for home, boiled two large potatoes, mashed them when they were soft enough, and made more gravy for the potatoes. Then I devoured everything. What a supper. And now I have a tummyache. The Mist indeed.

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