Saturday, May 8, 2010

Contemplating the grocery bill

I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised about my lack of productive writing. What is inspiring about a flashing cursor and an off-white window frame in OS X? ( It’s OS 10.4 by the way, I’m still taming the Tiger up in here)

Right now I’m reading Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert.

At parts, I can hardly make my way through it. That’s not a reflection of the writing, because the writing is beautiful:

I am loyal and constant in my love for travel, as I have not always been loyal and constant in my other loves. I feel love about travel the way a happy new mother feels about her impossible, colicky, restless newborn baby—I just don’t care what it puts me through. Because I adore it. Because it’s mine. Because is looks exactly like me. It can barf all over me if it wants to—I just don’t care.

I’m on page 45 and that quote is from 42. Maybe it’s weird that I chose that quote because a) I can’t relate to the travel bit or the baby bit, and b) I don’t remember reading it, even though I certainly read around it while eating lunch in a cute café this afternoon. I really do like it though.

But I am having severe trouble staying focused on this book that is written so much like I would write it (had I the skill, of course, and hopefully minus the crippling depression that hung over the first couple dozen pages). I suppose it is because Liz (she calls herself that, so I feel like I should, too) is being so personal that I’m inclined to mull over my own life decisions. For me, there’s not a whole lot to reflect upon at 21, but there is a very significant and encouraging outlook.

And not to suddenly change the mood, but damn I need to invest myself in the job hunt. How about Monday? In the intervening hours, let’s ruminate on my latest grocery purchase. I am going to be honest, in the spirit of Ms. Gilbert, because this was not a well-planned grocery outing…

I’ll start at the top with that lovely romaine lettuce. I bought it Monday and haven’t sampled it yet. Yeah. The tomatoes; I’ve managed to eat 90 per cent of both of them, but the last bits are stored together in a Ziploc container, awaiting something better. On their left (our right) are a couple of cans of soup because it was snowing the day I went shopping and I kind of wanted soup. Apparently I wanted soup enough to stand in the soup aisle ruminating for 15 minutes, but not enough to actually eat the soups, which remain in my pantry, but at least they're not perishable like my romaine.

may3 groceries

Then there’s my deodorant.

I mostly bought the frozen OJ because I had white wine-citrus sangria in my fridge for a week and every morning I briefly thought it was orange juice, then, devastated, remembered it was spiked with three kinds of booze and was not an appropriate accompaniment to my multivitamin.

If you’ll look across the bottom of the photo, you’ll notice a couple bags of perogies. Another moment of weakness, perhaps, but those two bags equal $5 worth of potatoes, cheese and egg albumen (I dunno what that is, but it’s in the ingredients). Part of a well-balanced diet, when paired with that romaine. Oh! And that Frozen Whole Leaf Spinach underneath the two tomatoes. That’s been absent from my meals, too.

Then there’s the onion. Safeway has the grossest-looking onions.

I bought two $0.49-packages of Mr. Noodles. What is it exactly that inspires me to do such things? I’m no pro, but I’m capable of creating a pretty satisfying meal out of ingredients such as the ones I mention just a couple paragraphs above. Yet I bought instant ramen. And then I ate it on two consecutive nights. Confession over.

And we end on Silk Vanilla fortified soy beverage—more familiarly referred to as soy milk. Am I alone in feeling just a teensy bit uncomfortable with soy milk these days? Food Inc. made me feel like all the soy beans in existence were evil. Oh well, it’s delicious.

So there you have it. And in the spirit of the unbelievable budgeters over at 30 Bucks A Week, here’s a scan of my rather overpriced receipt.

the receipt


  1. I hated Eat Pray sounded so whiny to me. Keep in mind she got a huge bonus to write the book before it was written, so the whole thing rung hollow to me. But maybe that's because I am in my mid 40s. Many people loved that book - perhaps I am a bit jaded!

  2. Hey Zoey,

    Great blog!

    Have no fear, Silk uses only certified non-GMO soybeans in our soy milk and we source all our beans from North America.