Grocery store politics

The trip to Fred Meyer today would break the monotony of the circus in government and take my mind off politics for a while. But I found that it could not.

From the lobby I scanned the store. As I looked across the mountains of fruits and vegetables some of them reminded me of certain congressmen. There were lots of fresh fruits and veggies in their own bin, and each looked just like another. Hairdos in Congress matched the bushy tops of bunched green veggies, and melons and squashes looked to me like those in Congress who have been on the vine a long, long time. The potatoes and coconuts stared back at me with their little dark eyes.

I turned and grabbed a cart, and gave it a short push. Then I tried another, and another. When I pushed each one, the shopping cart reminded me of a congressman. The first cart’s wheel chattered loudly as it rattled on the hard floor. Just noise, I thought.

The next squeaked awkwardly with each turn of the wheel. It might do the job, but squeaks are unproductive.

Another cart wheel jammed and stuck, refusing to move, impeding the forward movement of the other wheels.

The next one pulled to the right, and the one after that pulled to the left. Probably party-loyal carts, I thought.

I finally found one that did its job silently and well. It had no political posters, stickers or bills pasted to it, and it carried my load smoothly, performing the function for which it was designed. The products on every shelf beckoned to me with promises, and I selected carefully what I needed and piled them all into the cart. After loading my van I pushed the cart several feet across the pavement to the fellow who collects them. I said to him, “Check this out” and the cart went straight as an arrow, silently and sure. He smiled back and said, “there aren’t many like that…” And I thought to myself, no sir, there aren’t.

Norm Olson, Nikiski

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