Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Dear God (With a Side Note to Sam Walton)

Dear God,

Thanks for being awesome. You always know just what I need, and even it greets my present condition like the BP oil spill greeted the Gulf, I know that if I wade through the muck, there’s a shining reason for it on the other side. Thanks for my kids. They’re not perfect, but neither am I, and together we make an imperfect concoction that somehow just works. When the kids decide to stink up my truck while waiting in line to drop their little sister off, I think a lot of mom’s would be disgusted and proceed to lecture them on manners. But that’s not how you made me. You made me to delight in locking the windows and smiling through the pain while they gag on their own farts. Our little family is like carrots and Nutella:  a little offensive at first glance, but surprisingly pleasant when you give it a chance.

Thanks for my husband, too. He’ll come home after catching a red-eye flight from D.C. and just smile when he comes in. Emma runs up to greet him with her hair pulled up in a unicorn horn, and Bubby’s chasing her with a Bounty tube on his head, yelling “I’m a manicorn, I’m a manicorn!” Rae-Rae’s sitting on the couch laughing at You only know what, dropping bottom bombs like it’s Hiroshima. But my knight in shining armor walks in and sees me, in my fourth straight day of flannel pants and a sweatshirt, with tears streaming down over my smile, clutching the pearls, sobbing “Honey, I did it! I found out why Leroy’s eyes are crossed! Thank you, Jesus!”  It’s not just any man that will come home to that and  know that everything’s just as it should be.

Since I’ve got you on the line, could you tell me if there’s one Mr. Sam Walton up there with you? If so, I’d be much obliged if you could give him a message for me. You see, I went to do my weekly grocery shopping trip this morning, and I’d done really well. No extra junk, all of the fixings for my weekly menu, and maybe, just maybe, a couple bucks under budget. This nice little lady wearing a name badge offers to ring me up on a self-checkout lane. (That’s kind of ironic, huh?) 

Well, in the meat department, I apparently got there right after the manager did mark-downs, so I had several yellow tag items. A long time ago, I would’ve never bought clearance meat, but when you're walking down the bread aisle and hear little Miss Sunbeam chanting "bend over and I'll show ya!", you've got to make some sacrifices. 

So she’s ringing me up, and a pack of marked down round steak wouldn’t ring up the right way. She scans everything else, and beams me up to the Self-Checkout observation register. She tries to void out the overcharged item, but it voids out the reduced price, so I’m still getting’ the short end of this stick. Seven grey hairs later, she calls over a CSM to override it. By the time my transaction is finished, there are five, count them….FIVE, Wal-Mart managers and cashiers trying to ring up this dad gum piece of meat. Now, Mr. Walton, once upon a time, customers would get a break if they’d waited 30 minutes to pay for something in your store. But guess what I got? The generosity of the CSM to go put the meat back in the meat department because THEY WOULDN’T SELL IT TO ME! They could not override the price the way it ‘should be’ done, and they refused to sell it to me. Sorry kids, looks like it’s gonna be Spam and gravy this week.

Lord, I thank you again for your many blessings. Bless my hands as I prepare our meals, though mystery meat they may now contain. I look forward to talkin’ to you again later today, and if you could give Sam that message, I’d greatly appreciate it. And Father, I know I still ain’t Catholic, but this whole Wal-Mart thing has put darkness in my heart this morning. But that’s why you are God, and I’m just me. I don’t know how you do it…just trying to be good wears me out. 

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