Today is one of those rare, obligation free days, no story assignments, no meetings, and with the exception of sports practices, no school activities. I spent the entire morning worrying I forgot something earth shatteringly important, but the most urgent to-do list items were a Target run and gas fill up. Sounds like an easy schedule, right? Not for me, at 8:00AM I discovered a majorly significant truth.
I flunk idle.
Seriously, if leisure were a college course I’d have to bop the swarmy tweed loving professor. Maybe it’s years of tight deadlines, but for some inexplicable reason free time scares me; I function best on busy. The latest example of my weirdness starts with mustard, or lack of.
Our older son, a ketchup adverse soul, uses mustard on his hamburger, fries, blah blah blah – we’ve been out for a month and I swore to leave Target today with a bottle. Passing the gas station on fumes and vowing to fill up later, I stormed the red and white doors on a mission.
Yeah, you know what happened. I left with $200 worth of non-essentials and a bag of oversalted popcorn – NO spicy hot dog accoutrements.
Cursing my error, I passed the gas station, again, this time en route to the grocery store. (Disclaimer: I interpret the blinking “GET GAS IDIOT” light as a gentle suggestion.) Inside I ran into everyone I know, bought another $100 worth of non-essentials and drove home without, you guessed it, mustard.
BLEEPING, BLEEPITY BLEEP!
Condiments do not typically get under my skin like a raging case of Shingles, but I gave myself one lousy goal! Belted back into the driver’s seat I turned the ignition. Nada; the red light mocked me. Grr! Draining enough gas from the lawn mower can, I coast to the Quickie Mart for a fill up. At the pump a hand scrawled note announced the credit swipe was broken and to pay inside; I swear I almost cried. All I wanted to do was go home, put me feet up, and waste time on Facebook.
Little did I know the Post-it missive was to be my saving grace.
Me: “$30 on pump five, please.”
Cashier: “Anything else?”
Me: (Choir of Angels) “Yes, mustard! Do you have mustard?!?!”
Wide-eyed he pointed to aisle 3, I think I scared him, and I sure as heck overpaid, but in that moment I was Indiana Jones and my Ark of the Covenant was a dust-covered yellow squeeze bottle.
Home and victorious, I tucked away the mustard and opened my Outlook calendar for the rest of the week; mania, pure mania, just like Mama likes it! Am I the only freak who functions this way? You can tell me, I can take it. I’ll even make you a cup of tea and we can….wait…crap, flipping tea!
Back in the car….stupid day off.