Friday, February 26, 2010

my, how far i've come...

My last post about Supervalu has ignited my supermarket memories… and I think it’s time for a story about my first boyfriend. Ready?

C.J. Specklepecker was my first boyfriend. (His real name, although quite similar, has been disguised because this, of course, is a completely fictitious story… Special thanks to Jillian for helping me come up with this crafty code name.)

I first spotted him after I noticed my shoulder, roofed with a cold cut, and then looked in the direction of the evil cackle. There he was, throwing olive loaf from behind the deli counter, pelting me as I loaded Scones in the Irish Foods aisle. There he stood, mouth agape with devilish laughter, in all his redheaded glory.

We spent weeks in the smoke break room drinking .35 cent French Vanilla coffee from the vending machine. He flirted with me, while I listened, as disinterestedly as possible, hiding my heated infatuation as best as I could.

At 17, I had already figured out that boys want what they can’t have. He had a girlfriend, but he didn’t have me. I knew there was a connection between us. Plus, who wouldn’t want me? I mean, how can you not be attracted to a girl in black pants, a white button-down and supermarket vest complete with name tag.

Since every relationship is a learning experience, here is what I learned from C.J. Specklepecker.

1. Everyone should date a redneck once. High entertainment value.

2. Montecarlos are the best, cheesiest car ever (the old, old model ones)

3. Having a goal or two in life is actually quite important.

4. It is possible for someone to pee their entire name, first, middle, and last. And with a last name like Specklepecker, this was quite impressive. He peed mine once too… how romantic!

5. And finally, if I stalk someone, I may actually get caught.

A few weeks after the olive loaf episode, and supermarket-vest-deep into my infatuation with the owner of said ammunition, I looked him up in the phone book. I picked my friend, Lauren, up that evening and threw a bandanna and a ski mask in her lap. “We’re going stalking,” I said. I wore a denim train conductors hat, and I drove with the heated insanity that only someone in supermarket-love could.

Stalking was a semi-regular occasion for us, and we always made our rounds, seeing what all the boys were doing, but this one was of especially dire importance. It was also the first time disguises were utilized and the safety of the car was deserted. Most of the stalking had been driving by a house or maybe, if we were especially daring, a 7-11 or a bowling alley.

My car hit the side of the trash can as I pulled up a few houses down the street from his. I was loony with anticipation. We hopped out of the car, made our way into the shelter of the shrubbery, and peered in the window. There he was, wearing a big black Adidas t-shirt, sitting on the couch with the girlfriend. My stomach jumped. I got nervous that I might jump through the window and strangle her, so I gestured urgently for Lauren to head back to the car.

Just then, he got up and brought the garbage outside. We froze amidst the shrubbery. He looked around. Then he put the bags in the cans. We were terrified we might be caught, but then he stuck his hand down his pants and did the man belly/junk rub while letting out a large belch. We knew we were safe.

About 20 feet away from him, being scratched by an evergreen, I realized that this was the beginning of something beautiful.

After I had made dear C.J. my very own, we spent eight beautiful weeks making out on the hood of his Montecarlo before I went away to college. Sadly, our love only had the longevity of the olive loaf that had begun it.

I never knew love like this before, and I never knew if I’d find it again. I mean, I was so lucky. A man who could pee my name? A man who bought me French Vanilla vending-machine coffee! A man who worked at a deli counter and drove a Montecarlo! And just imagine, had our love thrived, my name could have been Deidre Specklepecker.

Who knew that true love doesn’t involve urinary love notes? Thank goodness I found my Barry.

Ok girls... I want to hear first-boyfriend stories.

Monday, February 15, 2010

why can't you count the haddock fillets?

yes, supervalu does occasionally do funny things like let bulls run around inside their stores, but other than that, they piss me off tremendously.

maybe it's because i'm a supermarketeers daughter and was given a good understanding of freshness, proper pricing, and quality at a young age. by age 4 i was eagerly equipped to use "unit price" to determine which product was the best value. i knew how to choose the ripe melons, learned to twist the eggs inside their container to make sure they weren't broken, and i learned that if you grab the perishables from the back of the shelf, you get a fresher product. not neuroscience... but apparently, these things are too difficult for some to understand.

i worked in a supermarket for summers during high school and college, ensuring end displays had proper signage, inventory was accurately tracked, and prices were properly displayed. i also ensured that the boys who worked at the deli counter... the fish counter... and the non-foods section, had dates on weekends and and workday flirtation to inspire their craft. (i.e. fish filleting, salami slicing, and mascara stocking.)

i have always loved supermarkets. they make me happy. i love food. the variety. the colors. the new items! the availability. the sales. my mom tells me that when i was 3, i took a kielbasa from the shopping cart and gnawed the whole thing through the plastic while she was waiting at the bakery counter for some bread. and you know something? i'd do it again! (if i ate kielbasa.) it's all just too exciting.

i love supermarkets so much that sometimes, i dream that i run around the aisles and kiss everyone i see.

i, however, am not kissing anybody in supervalu. supervalu is my worst nightmare. deidre, you say, i'm sure it's not so bad... it's not like you're in a third world country, to which i say, that's true, but in a third world country, i would know what to expect: pee pee water and flies laying eggs in my food. in ireland, supervalu has commercials where they tell me they have the biggest buying power and the freshest, highest quality food. they taunt me with their pictures of fresh tomatoes, plums, and avocados... they mock me with their images of delivery trucks unloading fresh food, all set to catchy music. others may fall for this trickery, but not me! not me, i say!

i won't get into why i have such disdain for them. let's just say moldy bread, rotten buffalo mozzarella, nasty-ass produce (and if you know me at all, you know how i feel about produce), prices not ringing up properly, and a rocket shortage during my addiction period are a few of the reasons.

but this..... this, my friends, is the deal breaker.

look at this picture closely.

how many chunky haddock fillets are supposed to be in the box?

4, that's right.

how many were actually in the box?


in an unsealed bag.

obviously the man/woman in charge of bagging the fillets was on a tea break. and the man/woman in charge of sealing the bags was on a tea break. and the man/woman in charge of quality assurance was also on a tea break.

i simply cannot take it anymore.

supervalu is an embarrassment to the word supermarket.

it's not the haddock, it's the principle.

a day of romance

hope you had a nice valentine's day...
my sweetie and i climbed up a mountain. for fun. in the mud. it was so... romantic.

here is a quick recap of our romantic day:

  • barry getting a stick from a tree and whipping me with it so i climb faster
  • barry speeding ahead of me and me yelling, wait for me, you bastard!
  • barry knowing i have to pee and taking me for a lovely walk along a babbling brook.
  • barry waiting politely and averting his eyes while i pee behind some trees. (this is the third time i've peed in the wicklow mountains. i don't know what it is. becoming one with nature. the shortage of bathrooms that makes me get the nervous tinkles. although, it's probably the giant cup of coffee i drank before leaving the house...)

here are some pics. (not of me peeing.)

later we went out for lunch and then came home and watched some movies.
p.s. romance is not:

  • the movie, "the reader" where kate winslet has sex with a 15 year old boy, goes to prison for committing war crimes, learns to read and write in prison, and then hangs herself by standing on her books. wtf?

  • the movie, "ghost town." i thought ricky gervais was funny? bad. bad. bad. bad. bad.

any romantic stories from vday?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

happy valentine's day

happy valentine's day!
a silly holiday, yes, but still a good time to tell the people we love that we love them.
i love you, friends!

this morning i woke up at 8am and made barry pancakes (from ginger's secret recipe, of course). there were plain ones and banana & peanut butter ones. since i'm on the "i don't want to look like a big white whale in my wedding dress" diet i skipped the pancakes and opted for fruit and coffee. oh yes, and pancake tuesday is this tuesday! barry's family is coming over for "american style" pancakes. (thicker instead of crepe-like.)

yesterday i tortured barry by making him get the special valentine's day movie rental package at x-tra vision. 3 love movies, a pint of hagen daas and a galaxy chocolate bar all for 13.49! i picked the movies and then ran away and made him go the counter... that wouldn't be as bad as making him buy feminine products, right? anyway, i thought it was funny. so last night, we watched the first one. it was called "i hate valentine's day" with nia vardalos and john corbett. now you might say, geez deidre, it seems like all you've been doing lately is watching movies, to which i would reply, "yes, you're right." (p.s. gin, i did see inglorious bastards which was so, so good.) anyway, it was actually quite cute. i'm a sucker for nia vardalos movies. if you haven't seen the one where's she's a tour guide in greece, get it. it's adorable. anyway, we've got two movies left for later.

now we are off for a walk in the wicklow mountains, then out for a cup of coffee, and probably to marks & spencer to pick up something delicious for dinner... this way, we won't have to cook and the only think cookin' will be our love. haha, ewww that made me gag a little. sorry. v-day is gaggy but i still love you all.


Sunday, January 24, 2010

i'm just not that into... this movie.

Sweet mother of stab me in the eye, did you guys see, "He's just not that into you"?

I did. Sheesh. I don't know about you, but I already know I'm crazy without watching a movie about it.

Wasn't this based on a book? I remember reading part of the book, and I thought it was about how girls need to get a grip and stop pining after boys who don't like them. But I guess I didn't get to the end, because I don't remember the super-hypocritical ending.

Barry told me it's because they had to give the girls "something" at the end. He said, "After all, they just made you guys look absolutely nuts for 90 minutes."

Maybe he's right.

In the meantime, I'm not picking movies anymore.

Did you see it?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

shoot me up with starbucks

I’m sitting in O’Briens (the wanna-be Panera here in town) and I thought I’d write a little catch up. I was home for 6 weeks and just got back on Monday. It was a good amount of time and I got to see lots of people and do lots of things, with plenty of time to just chill out.

Slower than Molasses Ireland even made some progress while I was gone. The house that is getting built down the street went from see-through to almost finished. And in town, there is suddenly a massive playground. I’m talking massive. This playground would rival even the finest American playgrounds.

Not that I don’t dig the kids or whatever, but I could think of a few other things this town needed before a playground… but most of these are selfish things. Self serving things. Like Starbucks.

I’m jonesin' for a cup right now… let me tell you. Denise and I developed a serious addition while I was home. I would venture to say we had Starbucks almost every day. When we realized it was becoming a problem, we would lie to ourselves and each other by saying, “Hey, umm, I have to run to CVS, wanna come?” Of course, CVS is in the same parking lot at Starbucks, and inevitably we would “forget” what we needed and would head into Starbucks instead, because “why not, it’s right there.”

Anyway, about the playground, you have to see it. There are millions of kids and parents there. It’s like a riot. It’s like flies swarming. It's like they are giving something away. Maybe they are giving away free Starbucks. I’d better go check.

I think I see little 30-minute timers and sign-up sheets on the swings. ;)

Also, the sun is out here in lovely Clane, which seems to be nearly as common as Playgrounds giving away Starbucks.

Ok, I'm drinking peppermint tea and trying to get rid of this addiction. (Yes, I've had withdrawl headaches since I've been off the goods.) As you know, I already have plenty of addictions. And with about 4 Starbucks in this entire country, for practicality’s sake, this one has got to be nipped.

What else did I do while I was at home?

Wait, I have one more thing to say about Starbucks. It's not all happiness and caffeinated beverages, you know. Not only do they charge .50 extra for soymilk, which I can kind of accept, but you know when they compliment you? Have you ever noticed? Like, they say, "cool glasses" or "nice earrings"? Well, sorry to burst your bubble but they don't mean it. It's part of their "marketing strategy." Ginger's boyfriend Mike read it while getting his MBA and he told me.

That bastard didn't really like my scarf, he's just getting paid to say it. Now I scowl whenever they say nice things to me. Maybe I'm bitter, but I know what they're up to. They can't fool me.


  • I got my wedding dress. After 3 days of intensive shopping, I found a dress. I had begun to get hopeless. There is some seriously ugly shit out there. I was afraid I was a "bad" bride because I wasn't crying with glee every time I put a dress on. Everyone kept telling me, "when you find the right one, you'll know. You'll cry." All I wanted to do was cry because every dress I tried on made me look like Little Bo Peep. Alas, I finally tried one on and both Dee and I liked it a lot. When we brought back Dee's friend and they put me in the dress again, they both got tears in their eyes, and I swear I even got a little one too. (For the record, this makes me a "good" bride.)
  • I blubbered like an idiot at Baja. Melissa came up from Maryland for a visit and Ginger, Melissa and I went out for Mexican food. We had a few margaritas before dinner while we were catching up. After a few more margaritas, we were all sobbing, loudly and at some points hysterically because we all love and miss each other so much. And because we are 30 now and definitely can't drink Margaritas (or anything else for that matter) like we used to. To Jerry, our waiter, we apologize.
  • Aside from the whirlwind of seeing friends, hanging out with family, and supporting the bottom line at Starbucks (while they pretended to like my accessories), I also took the time to eat myself silly and gain 10 lbs. But damn, I enjoyed myself while I was doing it.
  • I started another addiction. This one courtesy of my dear friend, Shannon, who got me, for Christmas, a Kiehl’s starter kit. All I can say is, I love Kiehl's. I've already placed my first order. Have you tried it? I love the Amino Acid Conditioner and the Ultra Face Moisturizer. And the Hand Salve. And the Lip Balm.
  • I watched the most wonderfully entertaining and guiltful American TV shows. Jersey Shore, The Real Housewives, Cougar Town, and everything on HGTV. God I love the USA.

Well, that's all for now. Lots of love. (please, somebody bring me a soy latte.)


Sunday, December 6, 2009

a poem for marvin

oh marvin, oh marvin, you're just a little mouse
it was too cold outside, so you came into our house
looking for some food, looking for a bed
you probably didn't know
where the journey would head

when i saw you
in love i fell
around your small neck,
i envisioned a bell

there was a connection
when at each other we gazed
you nibbling at our cabinet and pooping
me at your cuteness amazed

i said you could stay
barry said you must go
when he asked if i wanted you to snuggle me in bed
... i had to say no

i begged barry to capture you humanely
to which he said, "you must be kidding"
to which i said, "but I love him. his name is marvin"
to which he said, "how can you love him, you hardly know him"
to which i said, "i loved you when i hardly knew you!"
to which he said, "well, how do you anticipate we capture him?"
and i said, "you move the refrigerator and I'll catch him inside this pot"
to which he said, "you're crazy. you can't capture a mouse inside a pot."

then i ran upstairs crying while the mean man set traps

i told you to run
i told you to hide
i yelled, "marvin, stay away from the cream cheese with chives"

i thought you heard me
i thought you knew
but early this morning,
i became very blue

the mean man he told me
that you met your maker
i felt so very sad
it was a heart-breaker

but there's more to the story
and it isn't folklore
there is hope and joy
where you might expect gore

barry said he was nearby
when the trap snapped
but instead of being smushed
you laid nearby, un-scratched

quiet and still
obviously talented at faking
you snapped the trap craftily
for a great escape you were making

when you heard my warnings
you constructed a plan
it was risky but smart
to trick the mean man

you needed to get out
but couldn't find the way you came in
a new route would be taken
escorted by him

it's not until later
that it all became clear
when to say my goodbye
with my eyes filled with tears

that we went into the yard
and nothing was there
no little mouse body
not like i had feared

where barry had put you
the grass was all clear
kind of like jesus
from the cave disappeared

so my friend marvin
while it's possible you were eaten by a cat
i know you too well
and i don't believe that

what really happened
once the charade was over
is that you squeaked a farewell
and ran to a field full of clover

happy travels, my friend