This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things

Or rather, this is why we have too much of some nice things and absolutely none of others.

It’s no secret that I am an Olympic-level shopping-list meddler. There is always a list. The humans have learned the hard way that if they don’t have a meal plan and a shopping list, they’re more likely than not to be arguing about dinner in the frozen food aisle at 6:00 p.m. every night. The list, therefore, is sacrosanct.

The human male is very organized and even writes out the list in order so that he doesn’t miss anything. He makes little tick-boxes of things that need checking before he runs to the store.

Still, there is ample room for mischief. I like to add things the humans would never normally buy. I like to erase things they do need. But I have the most fun with quantities.

Example 1: The human male has just arrived home with the week’s groceries. (He usually volunteers to do the marketing because only he knows what he wants for lunch–and even that only when he sees it.) The female is helping put the groceries away. Let’s see. Bacon goes in the drawer with the cheese and lunch meat…

Surprise! I put bacon on a previous week’s list and you already had some! Hope you folks like bacon.

Uh, oh! Check the “Best By” date on this package. All Hallows Bacon! Spooooky bacon!

And now another dilemma. The spooky bacon hasn’t been opened. Is it still good? How old is too old? How off is “off”? Wasting food is a cardinal sin in this house, so they’ve got to choose. Do they:

a) Eat the spooky bacon and hope that it is all right

b) Toss out the spooky bacon and know that some poor pig turkey died in vain

c) Feed the spooky bacon to the felines, knowing that there will almost certainly be some very nasty clean up and laundry about ten minutes later

It’s a logistical, moral, and gastronomical quandary!

Example 2: The human female needed shampoo, and she likes to be “proactive,” so she put it on the list before the old bottle ran out. And then, a couple of weeks later, I reminded her that her shampoo was almost gone. “Don’t forget,” I said. “If you run out, you’ll have to use the male’s and as we all know, that might trigger the End Times!”

And so here we are. The bottle in the shower still has a smidgin left, and the cabinet under the sink is home to this:

I tried to get it on the list a third time, but the humans are on to me now. They keep teasing each other about needing more shampoo.

Laugh it up, mortals. I’ve seen to it that you will have to go to THREE markets to find the roast turkey you want for the chef’s salad this week and two to find the bags that you microwave-steam vegetables in. Plus, I’ve put three half-full bags of pasta in the pantry, along with a can of black olives that was never on any list. And those mangoes you brought home today? I rottened one of them, which you will discover about five minutes before the rest of tonight’s meal is done.

And I expired all your coupons.

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