Tuesday, June 13, 2006


Every once in a while I have this inexplicable urge to buy health food. Doesn't necessarily mean I eat the execrable stuff, just that I buy it. Sunday was one of those days. Ambling through the aisles of Harris Teeter late evening, I decided that I'd been having too many steaks of late, and should make up for the indulgence by chomping down on some fresh vegetables. So I pick up a couple of turnips and a few carrots along the way.

So far, so good.

I walk up to the checkout counter. Petite bespectacled girl behind the counter greets me with a smile.

"Good evening. How are you doing tonight?"
"Fine. Thank you."
"Did you find everything all right?"
"Yes. Yes, I did."
"Would you like paper or plastic?"
"Paper, please."
"Do you have a VIC card on you?"
(fumbling through wallet) "Oh ah. Right here."

While we exchange these pleasantries, she checks my groceries through. Breakfast cereal. check. Skim milk. check. Turkey bacon. check. Carrots. check. Turnips. Stop.

"Do these belong to you, sir?" She holds aloft the bag of turnips. Surely there must be some mistake. Surely no self-respecting, turkey bacon eating college student would go anywhere near such an obscenity.

"Ummm... yes", I confess sheepishly. Then as her incredulity gives way to a mischievous grin, I start to blush. Damn those pungent vegetables. It was as if she was holding aloft a box of fluorescent condoms (or worse, a bag of chocolate gummy worms) and waving it at my face. "Do these belong to you, sir... Really? Young man in white polo shirt has a fetish for tuber crops."

I hastily swipe my card and pick up the bag of groceries. "You have a good night, sir", the girl behind the counter says, trying hard not to break into peals of laughter. I mumble something in return and slink away.


I learnt something important that night. Firstly, just because the vegetable aisle contains certain abominations, doesn't mean you have to buy them. They are there for a purpose best known to the ancient wise ones, and who knows what horror could be unleashed upon us if we disturb them. If however, for some inexplicable reason, you absolutely must buy turnips, make sure that there is a self-checkout counter you can sneak out of, hopefully unnoticed.

Second lesson -- women don't care much for turnip eaters. If you hope to impress women in this country, you must learn to give up certain extravagances such as eating turnips. Kind of reminds me of the mutton episode in Seinfeld. Oh well, it's back to pork chops for me. I'll be packing an artery tonight.


At June 14, 2006 at 4:16 AM, Anonymous Coffee Roolz said...

Raoul you have a lovely narrative - i could really visualise you and them stinkin vermin crop :)

At June 21, 2006 at 8:43 PM, Blogger Shashank said...

eee Turnip kaa howat hai bhai?


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