Wednesday, December 20, 2017


I planned to drive to town on Monday but got a very late start and the more I tried to embark the more I procrastinated and the more I procrastinated the less I wanted to go so eventually I said "To hell with it!"

So I went on Tuesday. Not because I wanted to, but because I had some important things to do. And I also had to get more groceries to last through the rest of this year. 

There are only three places to shop in this wretched town and all of them were packed to the rafters with Christmas shoppers (Walmart, the supermarket, and the Dollar Store). There's also a Walgreens - but who the heck ever goes there?

Did I ever mention that I think Christmas should be permanently banned - and anyone who dares to celebrate it should be publicly burned on a stake?

The holiday purists are telling us that we should put "Christ" back in Christmas.

When I saw the crowded Walmart parking lot I said
"Holy Christ! What the hell am I doing here?"

Did I ever mention that children and anyone over fifty should be permanently banned from shopping? They are always in the way. Always!!!

Well, on second thought, probably anyone over sixty....
(70 per cent of my blog readers are groaning)

Walmart employees are always in the way, too. They congregate in the aisles talking to friends. There was a massive congregation in the coffee and tea aisle, all talking and embracing like it was a 75th year class reunion. I had to rudely break it up in order to get my cappuccino and English breakfast tea.

Did I ever mention that the price of groceries is much higher here in Tennessee than it was in Texas? No matter how much I spend I only get half of what I need. And I don't have much to spend so I only get a fraction of half.

Don't ponder that for too long. You'll hurt yourself.

I couldn't get any holiday "goodies". Fancy Christmas cookies were seven dollars a dozen. The "Reduced Price" shelf (my favorite haunt) didn't have any pies or cakes this time. Only bread. So I stocked up on bread.

Did I ever mention that you can no longer get candy canes? I'm talking good old fashioned peppermint red and white striped candy canes.

They have cherry candy canes, and fruit-flavored candy canes, bubble gum candy canes, Skittle candy canes (God help us), sour apple candy canes (no I'm not kidding).
But where the hell are the peppermint ones??

Admittedly, there were so many fat asses blocking the candy aisle that it was nearly impossible to look. I left empty-handed.

In the supermarket I bought six navel oranges for five dollars. Six!
I suppose they're shipped to Tennessee by wagon train from California.

Which reminds me that I had initially planned to write a post about all the good holiday winter food I used to get in California. Every other place pales in comparison.

So here I am on a rainy night, sipping tea, and vowing that I won't go out again until after the holidays.

It's supposed to get very cold again by Christmas. Snow, perhaps?


  1. Jon,
    I am always SO GLAD when the holidays are over. I do like some aspects of Christmas like the lights and other festivities but I am always glad when it's over and we go back to NORMAL. I can't stand all the frenzy though, that sours me on Christmas. I yearn for the quiet after Christmas. One thing I really hate about the Christmas season is all those TV commercials featuring a Santa Claus laughing "HO! HO! HO!" WHO laughs like that? Thank goodness I haven't heard one of those commercials......yet. Of course there are still those commercials that begin with a crying baby, which immediately turns me off to that commercial. Another subject, nice background wallpaper on your blog Jon. I take my inspiration from you!

    1. Ron, only a chosen few take their inspiration from me - and they have very good taste (*smile*). I hope you know I was joking when I said that people over 50 should be banned from shopping (*smile again*). I suddenly realized that I would be banned!

      I despise the frenzy of the holiday season, but I do like the festive side of it: the colored lights, decorations, good food, etc.
      I can't stand ANY commercials...especially the Christmas ones. I no longer have a TV, but I watch things on "live stream" and they inevitably have commercials.
      Anyway, I hope you and Bill have a peaceful and beautiful holiday

  2. Jon, I'm in whole agreement. I'm sitting here waiting for a call from Frontier Tech Support to get this new laptop protected and it's a half-hour past the time they told me they'd call. I don't know if they're caught up in holiday rush in cyberland or not but I've tried to get this done for 3 days and keep getting put off. Now I'm another kind of "off" but it starts with a "p" too. Maybe, if we are good and always do right, the Almighty will help us get through this religious holiday.

    1. There are many good aspects to technical stuff, Geo, but it seriously complicates our lives and I've never been able to understand any of it. I wish you luck with your new laptop, but my gut feeling is that you won't get anything resolved until after the holidays (I truly hope I'm wrong).
      This reminds me that my "new" laptop is now over three years old. And my "new" desktop computer has to be over ten years old. At least. It's still on Vista. There are times when I find myself yearning for the good ol' days - - walking to the library to get books and buying stamps for Snail Mail...

      Anyway, I hope your holiday will be peaceful and stress-free (is that asking for too much?).

    2. I hate the holiday crowds too. But this year I looked up the times of the store openings and got there then. Only had a few things to get and then I went to breakfast and I was back home soon after tha....

    3. For the past month I've been planning to get up at dawn and do my shopping EARLY, but it never seems to work out. I'm usually exhausted from lack of sleep - and the drive to town is so long that I simply abandon all hope.
      Perhaps I should consider moving closer to civilization....

  3. Maybe there's an advantage to being housebound for over a decade--plus I'd qualify for the over 60 folks and one day in my future I'll probably be reduced to one of those electric carts or a walker--OMG! LOL!
    Merry Christmas anyways! ;)

    1. I would LOVE to be permanently house-bound. The older I get the more I hate driving and the less I want to go out. And with my bad back I'll eventually need an electric cart....and probably a seeing-eye dog...(or cat).

  4. I don't know how you do it dear. Now If you lived near me, I'd gladly bake you my famous paper thin sand tarts...screw that Walmart cookie shit, and I could give you something to suck in candy canes. We have the ones you want all over the place here...big and small...candy canes I mean. I could also give you a mason jar of my aunt famous Egg nog recipe....delish! And the good stuff. Two glasses of that and you'll be set for battle. Whilst I did and do have one more holiday party to attend, they are fun, but truth be told, Id much rather just enjoy my abode, with masses of candle light, wine, nostalgic Christmas music, and red underwear....and just relax.

    1. Your comment made me laugh (in a delightful way). My passion for candy canes undoubtedly coincides with my unrelenting need for things to suck on (God, I can't believe I said that). Sometimes I really crave peppermint.
      I believe that Walmart cookies are made in remote Chinese sweat shops. I used to do a LOT of baking, but lately I'm just too lazy. I would definitely like some of your Aunt's egg nog.

      I prefer quiet late-night evenings at home - with wine, a cozy fire (in a fireplace, of course), nostalgic music....and someone to cuddle with (besides a cat).

  5. Hello Jon,

    I'm with you on the humbug part of Christmas trying to get through shopping with the dreaded masses. Plus there's way too many people spreading their damn germs around. It's a breeding ground for bacteria on everything you touch .... no one ever cleans the door handles, or handles on those shopping carts, or the pin pads for using debit cards. I carry anti-bacterial wipes wherever I go and wipe before touching, yet it's still not good enough because the air is germ filled. I have a thing about germs ... and now there's been E.coli deaths linked to romaine lettuce in Eastern Canada. Nothings safe anymore.

    Shame you couldn't find peppermint candy canes though. And the price of six navel oranges is completely outrageous. They're cheaper here by far. Wow! Your blog looks very festive and nice to look at. Tons of snow today, so we'll be having a white one after all. I wish you a pleasant holiday season with peace and joy *

    1. Ironically, I was going to mention my concern about contracting holiday germs. Everyone seemed to be coughing and sneezing. When I was in the checkout line at Walmart I was surrounded by people coughing. I kept trying to avoid them and hold my breath - but it was an impossibility.
      I always scrub my hands, face, and mustache when I get home. I also take extra vitamins...
      I really wanted some candy canes this year but finding the peppermint ones was an impossibility.

      The weather has warmed up slightly and it's raining. More frigid temperatures are expected by Christmas, with a possibility of snow by New Year's Eve.
      I hope your holiday is pleasant - - and blessedly germ-free!

  6. These images are a perfect accompaniment to your Tales of Wal-Mart, Jon! 75th reunion? lolololol. I am a bit surprised at the cost comparison between Texas and Tennessee. Is it time to come down from the mountain? To Alabama, perchance? (*smile*)

    PS - Only 5 hours into the whole Phamily-togetherness time tonight ... and already I'm looking for a remote mountain retreat of my own.

    1. I was admittedly cruel when I said anyone over 50 should be banned from shopping (which, of course, would include myself). Perhaps I should have said anyone over 85....

      Even during my wild, adventurous years I was always somewhat of a loner at heart and a misanthrope. It isn't surprising that I'd eventually become a mountaintop hermit.

  7. GRUMPY CAT left you a gift. This made me smile, though why I do not know? You are right about the candycanes. good old fashioned ones are indeed impossible to find.

    1. The local Walmart had a vast array of every conceivable kind of candy cane - - except peppermint. It was really frustrating. I also looked in the Dollar store but they were almost sold out of everything - some of their shelves were empty.
      All of those grumpy cat pictures cracked me up - and the litter box one was very appropriate.

      I hope you and your family have a pleasant and peaceful holiday.

  8. Merry Christmas Jon, relax and enjoy the holiday. I was thinking, he is banning himself from shopping - in my mind I am 29 - with 30 years of experience. I am blessed with better shopping options.

    1. Thanks Dave. I should probably change the ban age to 85 - then I think most of us will be safe....
      As for shopping options - I've forgotten what they are!
      Have a great holiday season!

    2. Jon, your grumpy cat pics are priceless! I've even forwarded one or two to my favorite humans. How did you manage to find such treasures? You continue to amuse and amaze me :-)

      May all good things come your way in 2018!


  9. Dylan, I'm always delighted when I'm able to amuse and amaze. The cat pictures made me laugh - especially the first one. I found them on the Internet. I simply Googled "grumpy Christmas cats".

    I was going to post some poems for the Winter Solstice, but they were very somber and depressing - - and very few of my readers understand the bleakness of my soul (I know you would). I figured that funny cats would be better...
    I plan to do another post or two before Christmas.

    Take care and have a peaceful holiday season and a bright 2018!


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