Thursday, June 26, 2008


Well, it finally happened. I cheated. I went shopping. It was somewhat excusable and somewhat not a bit excusable and on the one hand I think it’s funny that I feel soooooo guilty about it, but on the other…well.

I cheated.

I got a call from my doctor’s office last night saying, “We have your new prescription for you.” I have been trying to fill this prescription (well, a similar one) for two weeks now. No pharmacy in town carries this medication in the strength my doctor prescribed. The distributor doesn’t even distribute it in that strength, which is likely a large part of the problem. The manufacturer makes it, but nobody distributes it. Weird, huh?

Anyway, prescriptions are one of the errands I’m not going to try to batch up into my every-other-week shopping thing. Over time I will do my best to arrange things such that I and those Denizens taking regular things for allergies and what-have-you are starting new things on my “errand” weeks, but for right now I have enough to deal with, thank you.

So after dropping munchkins at preschool / camp, I swung a wide circle to the doctor’s office and then to the pharmacy. When I presented my New Improved Prescription, they affirmed that yes, they did have it in stock…and that it would take about an hour to fill. I expressed some surprise and disbelief, but the bench full of irritable folks waiting for earlier prescriptions convinced me that yes, they really did mean a whole entire hour.

Wow. Well, OK. Um. Change of plans.

This pharmacy is kitty-corner across the street from my preferred nail salon, and a dollar store. While I’d begun to fret about my nails, which were well past the two week recommended fill period (uh, actually, I think I was heading into Week 4 on these babies…), I had firmly told myself No, you will wait until next week like you said! several times. But I’d given myself my blessing to use the usual twenty minute fill period to dart into the dollar store for some hair ties and peppercorns. I reasoned that it wouldn’t be running an errand so much as making good use of otherwise idle time. And how could I be against that?

But with a full hour? And nails that are starting to lift and bubble and such?

Yeah. I walked over to the salon and got my nails done. Still not so much ‘running an illicit errand’ as ‘making good use of my time’, right?

I was overdue. I was scolded. I’d cracked one and gotten water under two more. For about the 16,572th time in our career together, Mary informed me that I need to come in sooner. That this waiting three or four weeks between fills was no good. “You come in every other week!” she said firmly, brandishing her emery board at me. I nodded meekly and made vaguely affirmative noises.

…but I won’t be coming in for three weeks. Because next week is my Errand Week (Week 1), and then the week after that is No Errand Week (Week 2)…so my next Errand Week? Week 3.

I totally lied to my manicurist. Just like I always do, even when I think that this time I really will come in every other week like she says. I almost never do. Even though it does save me time and discomfort in the end.

Ineducable: adj. incapable of being educated, esp. because of some condition, such as mental retardation or emotional disturbance. See also: Tama

Anyway, the nail thing took the full hour, and then a bit. In other words…my prescription was totally ready by the time I left there with my glistening examples of perfect pink and white gel application. (Mary, she rocks the gel nail thing.)

Which means that, when I then swerved into the dollar store on my way back toward the pharmacy, I did so illicitly. I seized a basket and rushed through the Accessories aisle (eighteen assorted ‘fashion’ hair ties, three bucks, SCORE!). Then I whirled like a maniac into the ‘gourmet’ section to seize up a jar of whole peppercorns. Four jumbo-sized cans of Spaghetti-O’s were grabbed practically without stopping as I romped past to round out my shopping seizure trip.

Fifteen minutes and a little over eight dollars later, I felt like a complete loser. Unclean, even. It was a crime of opportunity. Yeah, sure, I’m down to only two hair ties now (ugly ones that clash with everything, to boot) (except the !LOUD! tie-dye shirt I’m wearing today, the circus-clown-mouth-red one looks awesome with this baby!) and we were completely out of peppercorns, but nobody ever dropped dead for lack of peppercorns and I’m pretty sure if I put on my archeologist hat and went digging in the toy boxes and under the seats in the van and possibly out in the backyard plus it wouldn’t hurt to dig through the kids’ bathroom drawers oh! and also their assorted backpacks and purses and Barbie Dress Up Bags with Real Magnet Closures, I’d find some of my missing hair ties. I just don’t wanna, because every time I embark on one of those kinds of voyages, it ends up taking all day and I discover things I really wish I hadn’t – like months old pizza or rotting sippy cups of juice. Ew.

For a fleeting moment, I toyed with the idea that after all – it isn’t like you guys have a tracking sensor on me. My wallet doesn’t automatically upload to the blog or anything.

I could just pretend it NEVER HAPPENED.

But then I’d feel guilty. Like I was hiding an affair or something. “What? Those peppercorns? Oh, now, don’t be like that, baby, they don’t mean a thing…”

And then I tried to tell myself that it wasn’t cheating. Cheating, I told myself, would have been more like…being on my way back from camp and just stopping at the store because it was more-or-less on the way and I wanted to grab some hair ties. I was already stopped in the complex, ergo, it wasn’t a Special Trip; and therefore, like sock yarn, it shouldn’t count.

But…well…sock yarn does actually count. C’mon. It does, too. It costs money and occupies space in the stash…

It. Counts.

This whole ‘only biweekly trips’ thing isn’t just about the driving and gas consumption – it’s about time as well. I spent time I didn’t need to spend picking up a fraction of my total list for that store – which means that I’m probably going back to the store next week on my Shopping Day. And the Spaghetti-O’s weren’t even on my list (yet – I hadn’t gotten to grocery items).

So, yeah. It counts. I totally cheated. Exploited the fact that I had to be in the complex for an authorized prescription pickup to run not one but two errands.

I am ashamed.

And laughing at myself, too. I can take the darndest things seriously sometimes. Ooooooh, fifteen extra minutes! Eight dollars! Somebody call the police! Or a priest! Bless me Father, for I have sinned, it is…uh…well…erm…divide by two, carry the one…let’s just call it a REALLY long time…since my last confession…I accuse myself of the wild-eyed spending of Eight! Whole! Dollars! in a dollar store during a No Errands Week!!!! {sob, sob, sob} I’M SO ASHAMED!!!!! {sob, sob, sob}

{Priest rolls eyes heavenward, silently asks the Big Guy why, WHY, does he always get the mental cases…?!}

Of course, now I’m wondering (being as I am, the Queen of Digressions) how the heck long it would take me to actually do a Confession. Sorry. Sacrament of Penance. And would it be only fair to warn the priest before we got started? “Settle in and get comfortable there, Padre, this might take a while...”? And do you suppose he’d be adding another repetition of the rosary or a few chapters more Bible reading every time I said, “So, anyway…how’d we get off on that, I wonder…ANYWAY…on X occasions, I…”?

Could I get some Hail Mary’s off for, you know, being really, really truly honestly sorry for taking sixteen hours and twelve minutes to finish my confession of only, like, three mortal (and six gazillion venial, the confession of each one preceded by a long, rambling story that has nothing to do with anything) sins?

I am totally going to hell…aren’t I.

Oh well. I shall now go forth and try really hard to sin no more and avoid the temptations of sin. Wait. Occasions of sin. Or something like that.

Like I said, it’s been, uh, a while…


Anonymous said...

Perfect. Just perfect. I cheated too, but I don't feel nearly as bad about it as you do. I'm viewing it more as a learning curve, if you will. It's going to take a little bit to get everything lined up and working smoothly, so I'm trying to cut myself some slack. Just take a deep breath and go from here.

Anonymous said...

Prescription medication is a need. Professional manicure...not so much, at least not at my house. Doesn't matter, it looks good, you may have client meetings, and even if it's just something you want, it's not a big deal.

What seems completely illogical to me is that you're beating yourself up (or perhaps worse...navel gazing) over doing your 'every other week' errands early instead of just arranging your errands around a standing nail appointment...every other week. I know you started a week or so ago, but seriously, the world did not end because you bought hair ties. Is it going to end if you decide to take care of yourself (and your nails) and re-work an arbitrary guideline (when the 'every other week' thing started) to something more efficient. I doubt it.

And even if you're running errands weekly (or occasionally have to run some important ones on an 'in between' week) it sure beats the heck out of running them daily.

Cut yourself some slack already!

Unknown said...

Yes, you're going to hell, but I'll be on the bus with you, and we'll have one whopper of a party when we get there.
ps: I know the bus driver, so we'll get good seats.

Anonymous said...

I think that you used the wait time well (nails in need of filling just look nasty, so thank you). Maybe the dollar store was "unnecessary" but I can't imagine that those 15 minutes actually cost you anything. The things you bought were on your list (or would have been) so they weren't frivolous. I understand the goal, but don't let it become a whip to beat yourself with. Elizabeth in Apex, NC

Yarnhog said...

See? This is why I don't make commitments in the first place. I mean, except for things like marriage and kids and mortgages and loans...

But not about spending money. That would be pointless for me.

(Oh, and it would probably make you feel a whole lot better to watch the scene in The Godfather III where Michael Corleone gives his confession: "I have killed men. I have ordered men killed. I killed my mother's son. I killed my father's son...." Now, there's some sinning worthy of confession.)

Nicole said...

Just so you know, going too long without a gel fill can cause icky stuff to get between your real nail and the gel and fungus can grow and kill your nail.

Anonymous said...

It's not cheating - you need the medicine - you had to go! I'm thinking of doing this too - I end up at Target, then Walgreens, then etc. most days of the week. I waste both my time and my money - I'm andxious to see how you make out for the next few weeks.

DON'T let the nails go! I'm in healthcare and not a fan of acrylics or gels (in fact they're forbidden in our system), but don't wait too long - that's how people end up with fungus and spreading bacteria - washing your hands doesn't help. Don't let the "no errands" get in the way of your health.

Lydee said...

wow, I got an education on nail fills. I have yet to keep mine on long enough to fill! I always get frustrated and end up soaking them off.

hey, we had to go buy weed eater string. I stayed in the car so I wouldn't be tempted to buy anything. I don't consider it cheating. I'm hanging in there until monday, that's my next day to go to the store. so far, so good.