So most of us would certainly agree it's been a year to forget (unless of course you were heavily invested in tech IPOs or living on Fantasy Island). Whether it be the fact we were deprived of watching professional sports, spend valuable time with our families or hang out with friends at a local sports bar, frustrations were more than abundant. But what about embarassing moments? Surely you had some covid-related ones you'd rather forget....And I hope those moments brought you laughter when all was said and done. But if it didn't, well then, by all means, feel free to laugh at me. And (all) my embarrassing moments.
So in late March I headed out for my first covid grocery shopping “expedition”. First step stick a mask on and bring some gloves as well (given at first we were told covid could be easily spread from touching surfaces). Now this was before “designer” masks became a thing. I had a hospital one my doctor brother had given to me. Not sure if it was the fact I have pretty big ears or that I pulled to hard on the mask while putting it on but it ended up snapping on one side as I entered the grocery store. So I tied a bow tie knot around one ear and walked in, mask also tilted to one side. I was immediately told “Sir you can’t wear gloves” so here I was sticking them in my tiny little jacket pockets (think big gloves little pockets).
Got my shopping cart and walked in trying to steer away from every person in the store (come on first few days of covid were utter paranoia). Being a little bit (ok a lot) of a germophobe (hey who’s laughing now!) I decided to use a produce plastic bag to cover each of my hands and began adding items to my cart. That’s when someone tapped me on the shoulder. “Hey Paul” said the voice behind me, and this was enough to startle me, understandably, as I had not been out of the house in quite some time. I had also been touched! I turned around and it happened to be the dad of a kid I had coached in soccer the last couple of summers. It didn’t take long to realize he had a twinkle in his eye that indicated laughter or amusement was going on under that mask of his. I mean granted, I knew my mask was crooked, and I was aware that I sounded muffled like Bane or Darth Vader behind my stupid mask but surely it had to be something else making him chuckle I mean all this was not that unusual.
It was not until I saw my reflection on the cheese counter window that I finally understood how “special” I looked. Fogged up glasses (masks and eye glasses were NOT meant to go together. Every time I would speak, even breathe, my glasses would fog completely up like I had on one of those weed bong masks), a crooked mask with a bowtie around one ear, as well as two big gloves peering out of the tiny side pockets like a couple of ventriloquist puppets. As we parted ways, I waved goodbye to him with my plastic produce covered hands. Surely things couldn’t possibly get any more embarrassing right?
I pushed the cart over to the cereal/bread section, grabbed a couple of boxes of Vector, and then went to put them in the cart. Only this wasn’t my cart. You see I had accidentally (blindly? Hey my glasses had rendered me visually impaired) taken his shopping cart. There was no way in hell that I was going to return it to him at this point. I had suffered enough humiliation for one day. There was only one solution at my disposal: toss his cart in some corner, run out of the store, and never shop there again. As I started walking to the exit, I heard the same voice “hey Paul, you wouldn’t happen to have seen my shopping cart would you? Someone must have taken it by accident”. “No that’s definetly weird, sorry haven’t seen it” I murmured, red-faced, walking out of the store empty-handed feeling his eyes squarely fixated on me.