I spied it in the corner, almost hidden beneath a teetering tower of dishtowels in the kitchen goods corner. I knew I didn’t have long, the auditorium was so full of junk that the walls threatened to swallow me whole. There were small people scurrying around on the floor, in and out of makeshift aisles between mystifying stacks of detritus. I didn’t want to be there. I had tried so hard not to go. I had left a sick kid at home and gone innocently to the school to retrieve the other. She asked if we could go, but we were on the one way street and she knew I would never go around the whole stupid block again. I acted like I was trying. Shoot honey! We can’t go if we can’t park. She understood, because she’s awesome. So when I had to stop and allow a car to back out of the front row parking spot, I resigned myself to the fact that we were going to have to go. I checked my cash supply and found a ten spot. Okay, I said, let’s do this thing.
I took a deep breath, threw back my shoulders, and walked through the gates of hell into the annual school rummage sale.
|Imagine this with zombies crawling around. That's how it felt when I was there.|
My girl heard me gasp Oh No. She took my hand and gave me a tug and a winning smile. Come on, mom!
I avoided the middle, she knows me better than to think we were clothes shopping in there. I found the book section and steadied myself by browsing the titles. I encouraged my girl to find something for herself. As soon as she found something, we’d be out of there.
She soon beckoned me from the other side of the room, gesturing toward a brand spanking new pair of roller skates with purple wheels in the size bigger than her feet. The sticker said $4. I was nodding enthusiastically as I made my way over, YES, yes. There you go! Have those skates, honey, and let’s get the hell out of….
Then I spied it in the corner. A flash of silver, a neatly coiled electrical cord. Latched for safety, but promising double sided nonstick grilling surfaces inside. A panini press! I died.
I only had $10, and the skates cost $4. There was no sticker on my coveted item. I had to have it. Had to! I picked it up and looked at my girl: Do you think we can get both of these for $10? She eyed me suspiciously. I’m getting these skates, right? Let’s just go ask.
I waited in line with the minions, and when my turn approached, I did my best to pretend that my beautiful panini grill was a woeful piece of shit. I reported that the piece of shit didn’t have a price on it, insinuating through my disdain that it was such a hunk of junk, it was probably meant for the trash so no one had bothered to tag it. Maybe I batted my eyelashes, just once or twice. Consultations were made, comparisons to other small appliances. It was busy. Finally, a shrug and a shouted responses by the mom in charge: “I don’t know, three bucks?”
Do you know what makes any food delicious? Pressing it in between two hot surfaces inside of some class of breadstuff. It even redeems breakfast.
|Rocking the purple wheels like nobody's business|