Perhaps there are others but I collect shopping lists that the careless shopper discards after its use has been extinguished with the items on the list having been bought. I have always had a fascination for Homo sapiens and their living habits. What I would not give to be invisible and spent time under their dining table or better still underneath their conjugal nests. What rich pickings that would offer. It will never happen and I’ll just have to do with the flotsam that one can pick up from the streets or discarded shopping trolleys.
I am not alone in those habits. In fact, TV now has shows totally dedicated to assuaging the curiosity of others about others. We had a long list of “Big Brother” type of programs including much footage in the dark of the night, of the antics of couples on top of endless rows of mattresses. Millions were glued to their TV’s with special cameras focused from all angles to the cavorting or sleeping couples, all in a very convincing blue-black-grey colouring adding greatly to the authenticity of a hoped for glance of something exposed and naughty. Millions of people became instantly good old perverts with unbelievable riches rolling in for the Media Moguls. Of course, our rapacious need for the sensational became jaded with “Big Brother” and moved into “Big Cooking” and “Big Family Fare” shows, with expulsions and similar psychological tactics, trying to woe us back to TV and advertisers.
Anyway, with the shopping lists, it’s not just the items on the list but also the manner of writing, the attention to details and the pain that some go through making the list. I found a list that included snail bait and had in brackets (safe for pets). Another might have 2 liters of milk and specify ‘full cream’ or another ‘low fat’. I picked up a list from a trolley that had just been emptied by a somewhat overweight man. His list included ‘low fat’ cream. Good on you, I thought, you are on the right track. The lists that give me the greatest satisfaction are those that include lots of fruit and vegetables. I once found a list that included 3 bunches of celery. Three bunches, can you believe it? I could just imagine the frank, honest and sonorous voice of the husband calling out to his wife; “don’t forget the 3 bunches of celery and the apples dear.” They might have been starting their celery and apple juicing diet. Such heroic efforts in health and vigorous bowel maintenance don’t go unnoticed by me.
Just when I thought I had about exhausted all the ‘oeuvre’ in making shopping list I discovered a new form of ticking off the items. As you probably all do, most tick off (or not) the items by pencil or ball-point ensuring each item gets bought. Amazingly I discovered a totally new form of ticking off. This person, their sex remains a mystery, ticked off the items by a very precisely executed little tear next to the item on the list. This whole and very extensive list had all those little tears next to each and every item. I surmised it would have to be an academic or perhaps even a scientist. A professor in statistics or may be just a top person in charge of the Bureau of Meteorology. Could it have been a person in charge of ‘Birth Certificates or even a Mortuary, a Boeing pilot?’ The good thing though, was, plenty of fruit and vegetables.
There is hope for all of us.