Hi. We’ve never officially met, but you’ve probably seen me around. Where? Hmm, more prominently at the grocery store, I’d guess, given the narrow aisles and general claustrophobic atmosphere.
I’m the one eyeballing your cart. Not cause you’re in my way, or because I’m thinking of pilfering your non-fat dairyfree soy milk. Nah. Just because I find other people’s grocery carts fascinating.
I’ve always been like this -fascinated by what people store, carry, have. I watch with fascination as the people ahead of my at the grocery store unload their cart. Ooh, they bought the fancy whole bean coffee and cornish hens. Oh, and those weird root vegetables. What is that, jicama?
I’m enthralled by what people bring home with them, but also with what they carry when they go out. When and why did we stop doing those “What’s In Your Bag?” memes?? I don’t even like to carry a purse, but damned if I don’t love seeing what other people have in theirs. Whoa, they still make Lip Smackers? Wow, that is a lot of loose tissues. Oh my God, is your wallet made of duct tape?? Can we be friends?
I know I’ve creeped out my parents or my husband on more than one occasion by craning around in my seat as we drove by a house with its shades up and the TV on. What are the watching? What color are their walls? Do they have art hung up? Family pictures? Is the room messy or meticulous?
I mean, I would never, ever presume to go into someone’s purse, or house, or shopping cart. But the little glimpses I get in the course of a normal day are wonderful. I don’t know why it fascinates me so, but I love catching those tiny, humanizing glimpses of people with whom I would otherwise have a wholly fleeting – if not non-existent – relationship.
Does what I keep say something about me? What I store in my closet, what I put in my grocery cart, what I carry in my bag?
Tell me what it says about me that I don’t have dedicated pockets in my bag for any of my ephemera; cherry and cake batter Chapstick tucked into pen loops, thrown into cell phone pockets, lost under all the books in the main compartment. My cell phone is wedged in the pages of a library book – oh, and there’s always a library book. Two notebooks, one ostensibly for work, on for personal writing, both used for whatever, both used infrequently, anyway. A book I’m reading with my class, a DVD I’ve been trying to remember to return to a co-worker for two months.
Tell me that you’re as fascinated by all of this as I am.