Back in the 1950s – when I was a small girl and dinosaurs walked the earth – there was a game show on television called What’s My Line?. A group of celebrity panelists would try to guess the occupation of a contestant through a series of yes-or-no questions. The occupations included such obscure career choices as circus performer and girdle tester.
My link from What’s My Line? to the topic of today’s blog is very weak, I assure you. But What’s My Line? popped into my head and I couldn’t leave it behind. I LOVED that program.
Anyhoo, what got me thinking about What’s My Line? is that I had two things happen to me yesterday that reminded me that sometimes who I am (my “line” so to speak) is not necessarily who I wish I was.(I told you the connection was weak, but it was What’s My Line? What can I say? It wouldn’t leave my head.)
Both realizations took place in the grocery store as I was doing my weekly shopping.
I was in the deli department looking for some fresh mozzarella to serve along with the delicious grape tomatoes I need to use before they spoil and the basil that is starting to go to seed in my herb garden. After a brief search, I found what I was seeking, and – best of all – it was on manager’s special for $2.39, down from the original price of $3.99. I turned it over to see the expiration date, and saw that it expired Sept. 16 – today. Yay! A bargain.
But then I got to thinking….there were probably four or five containers of this fresh mozzarella cheese, all with Sept. 16 expiration dates. Few people actually buy fresh mozzarella, so I surmised that no one would be buying all five containers before the pull date. Why not, I said to myself, ask them to sell me the container for a buck?
Almost undoubtedly they would have. But here’s the thing. As much as I wanted to be that great bargain shopper, I simply couldn’t do it. I tried. I walked up to the counter three or four times with the express intention of asking them to knock down the price. But each time I walked away, too embarrassed to ask. I’m lucky they didn’t call security because of someone acting suspiciously. You’ll only save a buck thirty-nine, I justified it to myself.
Bill has a friend who negotiates the price of everything. He actually has gotten grocery meat departments to knock down the price of a perfectly good roast simply by asking them to do so. He once negotiated a price on a refrigerator so low that the salesman had to seek manager’s approval. Once the manager approved the price, Bill’s friend then said, “Ok, I will take it at that price if you’ll throw in a freezer.” They did. I want to be that person. The only time I ever successfully negotiated a discount was in Egypt, where if you pay full price, they will throw you in prison for insanity.
The second instance of “me” versus “wannabe me” took place in the cookie department, where I found Oreos on sale. I bought two bags because I can’t keep up with my husband and my grandkids. Every time I look, the cookie jar is empty.
When I was younger, I had a friend who lived near my school. Almost every day, several of us would stop by her house as we walked home from school. We liked our friend, but more importantly, we liked that there was a cookie jar in her kitchen that was ALWAYS FULL OF HOMEMADE CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES. Every day, fresh cookies. Did I mention they were homemade?
So, from the time I was young, I always knew that when I was a grown up and had kids and grandkids, I would be that person. I would be the mom/nana who always had freshly made chocolate chip cookies in my cookie jar.
But, in my defense, my grandkids like Oreo cookies. In fact, when they open the cookie jar and find homemade chocolate chip cookies, they will take one, but will then ask if I have any Oreos. I swear this to be true. They prefer Oreos to my homemade cookies.
My husband, not so much. He loves my homemade chocolate chip cookies, but accepts Oreos as his consolation prize.
But back to What’s My Line? because that is, of course, what I really want to talk about. Don’t you yearn for the days when game shows looked like this…..
…..instead of this……