This morning, once I shipped the kids off to daycare, I went to the bathroom where I knew I would have some uninterrupted toilet time and a shower. But my plans unravelled as I realised after the fact that we had run out of toilet paper. And not just down a roll in the bathroom, completely out. As I sat there wondering what to do, I gazed at the cardboard roll contemplating if that was a step too far. Then my eyes landed on the Sheridan hand towel and I slapped myself in the face for being so disgusting. So I started singing a little rhyme I learnt some time ago.
Here I sit amongst the vapour
Wishing for some toilet paper
How much longer must I linger
Before I have to use my finger
Costco is responsible for my unfortunate start to the day. If you’ve ever been there you will know exactly what I am talking about. It’s the new warehouse-style shopping chain that forces you to spend $60 on a membership before you can even walk through the doors. Where the trolleys can seat 16 and are bigger than most small cars. Where the teddy bears are super sized and the bread rolls come in packs of 45. Perfect if you are planning a party. But even if you are not, the bread rolls come in packs of 45.
I joined up last year when I was new to Melbourne and my first shop cost me over $900. But my SIL told me not to worry, “It will last you 6 months before you have to go back again.” However, after spending almost a year of going there from time to time, I think it’s best avoided unless you have 19 children. ALDI all the way man.
Here is how that first shop went down.
I loaded up the trolley with the bulk toilet paper (imaginatively called “Bath Tissue” so it doesn’t make you look like you run an orphanage that’s had a bout of gastro). Then I chose the tray of avocados and the massive plastic tub of salad mix and the 18 pack of bagels. In went the cocktail cucumbers and the 1.5 kilo tub of blueberries and the giant sack of carrots. I marvelled at the enormous apple pies and the seriously huge mud cakes for $14. The cold section came next, so I stopped for a trial of some French triple brie and threw that in too, but not before snapping up three extra free bits to sustain me for the rest of the shop. After that I moved on to the wine aisle and stood baffled at the huge selection of imported wine that I couldn’t pronounce. One of them reminded me of a French guy I pashed quite vigorously in a cafe once in London. I wasn’t sure why since I couldn’t remember his name, only the half a croissant he’d left behind in my molars. There was no second date. I tossed in a few bottles for good measure.
The next stop was the bulgogi beef tasting. I belted the hungry horde out of my way who were snatching the samples before they had even hit the tray. Once I’d thrown down a few patty cases of that, It was time for the dairy section. 5 litres of milk, a 2 kilo tub of Jalna and 3 cartons of thickened cream later, I was ready for the cleaning products. In went a giant pink tub of Vanish, a 4 pack of toilet duck, a bulk packet of chux and a huge dispenser of garbage bags. On the end of that aisle was a cracker taste testing, so I feigned interest with the demonstrator while I sampled every flavour and moved on to the next bit. Betty Crocker triple chunk fudge brownies were on sale in a pack of 6, a caterers container of flour joined the growing pile and the crackers came too. I grabbed the slab of chick peas and the 5 kilo jar of pitted olives and the Sweet Baby Ray’s sauce sworn to be the best tasting sauce in the entire world. Fuck it, I took two of those.
I bypassed the $1500 kiddy playhouse, the super sized teddy bears and the kayaks, then tried to ignore the toy section altogether, but was roped back in by the bulk pack of Shopkins and the “Best of Roald Dahl” collection of books. In went the “Frozen” backpack for my daughter and not to be outdone, I grabbed some sports socks, drink bottles and a couple of pairs of ugg boots.
It was time for another snack, so I waited patiently by the Vitamix demo for my serve of green tea ice cream, then topped it off with some honey almonds. Delicious. 2 kilos for a mere $25. I spotted the stationary aisle which I had somehow missed, so I heaved and pushed the overflowing heap in my trolley towards the bulk pack of highlighter pens and the reams of copy paper. I figured I wouldn’t be needing to do this for ages (and it was the end of the tax year), so why not stock up. A two pack of staplers seemed logical, as did the $55 pack of post-it notes and the batteries for my wireless mouse. A HUGE box of zip lock bags were amongst the final pickings, as well as the caterers pack of foil and glad wrap, grain free holistic dog food in a 15 kilo bag and an assortment of 2 kilo frozen berries. I’ll make smoothies and freeze muffins I thought. Oh, I mustn’t forget the bottle of 1500 Vitamins, the nappies, wipes and the 12 pack of Macleans Toothpaste. Essentials.
Yeah. So now you can see how I dropped almost a grand on all this shit without having any real idea if I was saving or not. I wasn’t about to whip out the calculator and check, you just assume you are saving as everything is in bulk. I choked as I swiped the AMEX at the checkout, thanking my lucky stars they didn’t charge a fee for that because they are American. So at least I would have 1/8th of a one way flight to Sydney in points. Assholes.
Months later, when you are sitting on the toilet, in the apparent comfort of knowing you can survive armageddon with that much toilet paper and toothpaste, you will realise you’ve run out. And you won’t notice until it’s too late because you’ve trained yourself not to need to check this stuff.
So Fuck You, Costco. Fuck you for being a 30 min drive away on a good day and for being impossible to shop in without spending $500 MINIMUM. Fuck your trays of avocados which will rot before you can eat them all and fuck your 45 pack of rolls that taste like they are from a bad harbour cruise. Fuck your bagel packs that don’t last more than 3 days too. Who the fuck eats a bagel in Australia anyway? It’s like a novelty item that serves no purpose, it’s bloody BOILED BREAD. And kind of gross. Fuck your “Bath Tissue” too that lulls people into a false sense of arse security. And while I’m at it, fuck the last tube of Macleans I had to cut open so I could brush my teeth and not have death breath all day. You suck.
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