Why We Need Greeters At The Post Office

Photo Credit: santheo via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: santheo via Compfight cc


Photo Credit: eVo photo via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: eVo photo via Compfight cc



Some of us get really nervous and confused when we have to choose the right forms to fill out at the post office.  We are post office wimps.

We look at the line of customers waiting to be served. . There are fifteen people ahead of us, and, oh yes, there is one postal worker behind the counter.

We look at the many forms in their neat little stacks on the writing counter adjacent to the people on line.  We ponder, “Golly, which one do I need?”

Then we look up at the signs over the postal worker’s head. These signs are supposed to help us. We study the signs. They do not help us, and we feel stupid.

We look back at the fifteen people on line, and wonder, if they would just let us ask one teeny, tiny question of the nice postal worker behind the counter.

One look at their snarling faces tells us, “Don’t even think of asking a question ahead of us.

So, we wait on the end of the line and start filling out the forms that we think are correct.

Three more people come in to the Post Office and, since we are not finished with our forms, we invite them to get on line ahead of us.

They do. Then they whip out their pens and start filling out their forms on the counter.

Because we are wimps, we say nothing.

We wait on line. Finally, we hear our “Next,” and we advance to the desk.

One form (the green one) is right, but the other one is totally wrong. The post office worker tells us what color to get. Before we leave her window, we whisper, ever so softly, “Can I come right back up to you and not have to stand in line again?”

She didn’t even have to talk. Her look said it all.

We mince right back to the end of the line which now has 17 people on it. We fill out the form and get on the back of the line again.

Overcome with frustration, nerves and the need to eat a half gallon of Haagen Dazs, we walk off the line and out of the post office, get in our car, and drive fifteen minutes to the post office in the next town. We know that there is a 7-11 store in that strip mall, and they sell Rum Raisin.

No one is on line, and the kindly postal worker helps us mail our letter. We go next door and buy a pint of Haagen Dazs Rum Raisin.

So, that’s why we need Greeters at the Post Office. Greeters will help us wimps stay on our diets.


Stage Your Supermarket Cart: Be the Envy of Everyone

Photo Credit: JasonUnbound via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: JasonUnbound via Compfight cc

Start with the Kiddie Seat.

Staging One: No Child is in the Kiddie Seat:

Stage a Tableau of Color and Texture

Mix red and green baby lettuces, white daikon (who cares that you don’t know what to do with it; it’s a nice color contrast.) Mix in a few jars of baby octopus. So what if the jars have been on the top shelf since 2004; people will be intrigued by your allure.

Surround an upturned loaf of white Wonder Bread with jars of fig jam, assorted almonds and quince. Shabby chic!

Staging Two: A Child is in the Kiddie Seat:

Stage the Child

Give him carrot sticks and have him nibble them passionately. No one needs to know that you promised him, if he was good,  a big fat bag of M & M’s when you got back in your car.

Get on line in back of a cart where another child is having a tantrum. Teach your child to smile and coo at other customers who are screwing up their noses in disgust at the crying child.

When you get out to the parking lot, get the hell out of there, fast, before the other mother comes out. Throw your kid his M & M’s and head to McDonald’s just like you promised.

Old People Buying Cakes in the Supermarket Bakery

The woman was in front of me on the bakery line at the supermarket. She was with a man who I assumed was her husband because he was old too.  She was deeply engaged with the bakery salesgirl.

“It needs to be fresh,” she said. “We might have company this week-end.”

“Taste this cupcake,” said the bakery salesgirl as she offered a chocolate cupcake. “It’s got the same inside as the cake.”

The elderly woman broke off a piece of the cupcake and shared it with her companion. The bakery salesgirl smiled at me, because she knew I was patiently waiting to buy my usual two biscotti while the couple were making their decision.

The old woman’s hair had once been layered and colored. Now, its coarse clumps, tangled in dull shades of orange, yellow and gray, lay wherever they had settled when she got out of bed that morning.

She reminded me of the older women who get wheeled into the beauty salon by their children or their care givers because someone thinks a color, a cut and a blow will be just what they need.   Often, it is difficult for them to maneuver into a comfortable position to have their shampoo. I wish that beauty salons had special seats (maybe some do) for elderly arthritic people who need someone else to maintain their hair.

“Mmm, delicious,” she said after tasting the cupcake.  “I’ll take the whole cake.  Thank you so much. You have been so kind.”

As their cake was boxed and tied, I waited in line behind the couple. I’m old, but they were older.

Her hunched shoulders were hidden in the worn collar of what my mother used to call a “spring coat.” It was made of some kind of black wool and they were a few loose threads that stuck out oddly. The pills and naps in it told me that, if it could talk, the coat might have great stories to tell, perhaps about the forties.

I don’t know. It was just a coat worn by an old woman who was with an old man.  They were buying a cake, in case they got some company that weekend.

I hope they did.

Nuts on a Plane

Photo Credit: faungg's photo via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: faungg’s photo via Compfight cc

Nuts are soothing to eat, especially on a plane, during turbulence. Next time you fly through turbulence, look around. If you see a passenger resembling a deranged beaver gnashing savagely on her peanuts,  share your own measly pack of peanuts with her. Chomping those nuts with ferocity might just calm her enough to keep her in her seat and save all of you from the sight of her running through the plane, ripping off her clothes, and screaming, “I wanna get out.”

Gnashing nuts is definitely better than being nuts. As I am quite capable of both gnashing and being nuts on a plane, I read lots of stuff about my fear of flying. Once I even spoke to a pilot about my fears of turbulence. He suggested that I think of the plane (with me in it) as a grape sitting on a bed of Jell-O (the air).

“The grape,” he said,  “might get jostled but it will never fall through the Jell-O.”

I embraced this grape comparison as a compliment because in the past, I had always been likened to a pear, particularly when buying clothes.  If given a choice of being a grape and sitting on a bed of Jell-O, or being a pear and sitting in the middle seat on an airplane, while playing the “keep my thigh from rubbing your  thigh” game with the window and aisle passengers, I’d definitely opt to be the grape.

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Photo Credit: Mez Love via Compfight cc

Let’s go back to the nuts. I used to buy a whole bag of them at the airport concession stands before I got on my flights. It was worth paying a price almost as high as my plane ticket to have my little crunchy comforts in my seat pocket. Then, hurrah!  I flew Southwest! The peanuts and snacks at Southwest are freeeeeeeeeeeee! Yippee! On my last flight, the flight attendants came through the cabin on their first pass  and they tried very hard to make eye contact when they handed us our snacks. On their second pass, however, our keepers, oops, flight attendants  tossed our snack packs at us, and some of us, so happy to be fed for free, were leaping in the air to catch our little feed packs.

It’s all good, however. Gnashing nuts is a much better way to reduce flying anxiety than being tackled by six burly passengers, and then being restrained in my seat by their neckties, belts and shoe laces.  And, remember! On Southwest, the nuts are free!

Photo Credit: N00/4775842363/”>faungg’s photo via Compfight cc

HDF’s Reality Cooking Show: Chopping Onions and Garlic

Chopping the Onion

  1. Start peeling the onion’s skin.
  2. Accidentally drop a piece of the onion skin on the kitchen floor.
  3. Pick up the onion skin with a paper towel, and put it in the garbage can under the counter.
  4. After touching the floor with the paper towel and sliding out your garbage can from under the counter, wash your hands with soap. Then dry your hands.
  5. Pick up the knife to resume peeling.
  6. Notice that your hands are still a bit soapy, and soap is not an ingredient in meatloaf. Wash and dry your hands again.
  7. Continue peeling and drop another piece of onion skin on the floor. Decide that you cannot stop  peeling to pick up every little thing that lands on the floor
  8. Start cutting the peeled onion by slicing it and then chopping it.
  9. Do that rocking thing with the knife that makes you feel like a real foodie.
  10. As you rock your knife, note that at least four or five pieces of onion fly off the cutting board, deposit schmutz on your clean shirt, and then land on the floor.
  11. Worry about the pieces of onion lying on the floor. If you step on them, you might fall, and have to go to the hospital, and who would be left to feed your starving family?
  12. Decide to write a letter to the cooking shows demanding that they televise what falls on the floor, behind the counter.
  13. Hear your phone ring, and worry  Continue reading

Are You a Fake Foodie Like Me? Five Ways to Tell


  1. You cook a gigantic meatloaf on Sunday so you don’t have to cook on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and if you really push it, Thursday.
  2. You make an antipasto by emptying many jars and cans and throwing the stuff on a plate with some salami, all artfully arranged.
  3. You are still planning to learn what to do with a real artichoke, not the ones from the jar.
  4. You buy arugula and tender baby lettuce  at the Farmers’ Market and then put it in your “show off” recyclable bag, Then you strut around the food stalls screwing  up your nose at other people’s plastic bags.  At the end of the week, you throw out your Farmer’s Market stuff  because it’s much easier to prepare and eat a washed bag of salad mix.
  5. You go to a Farmer’s Market and bring your big dog on a long leash. You wait for people to pet your dog and talk to it, if you haven’t already tripped them with the damn leash.  You don’t buy anything. What is it with you dog people at the Farmers’ Market? PS. I don’t have a dog.

Do you know any fake foodies?

Attention: Short Supermarket Shoppers! We Must Unite!

Yesterday, another short woman and I rescued one of our own.  She was trying to step on the frame of her shopping cart so she could reach up to the top shelf in the pickle and olive jar aisle. She wanted a super large jar of green stuffed olives, the economical jar the stores always put on the stratosphere shelf.  Short people, like us, can never get, let alone see items like that.

Uh oh! Her cart was slipping as she stepped on it!

I screamed, “Wait!”  Then, bracing her shopping cart against the shelves with my body, I held it in place while she tried again. No success. She did not want to drop the olive jar on my head, and she needed her two arms for her ascent and grab.

Time to reconnoiter.  Where are the tall people when you need them? We needed reinforcements.

Another short woman was meandering down the aisle, blissfully unaware of the situation.

Pressing  her into service, I commanded, “I’ll hold the cart. You grab her stuff!”

I held the cart. The olive lady climbed with one hand, got her jar of olives with  other hand,  and handed it  off to the short receiver waiting for the catch.

Victory! We embraced.

Sisters of Shortness, We Must Unite! (Short men are welcome too. Ha Ha. Fat Chance!)

Mindful Eating of An Egg Salad Sandwich

rooster and hen

By Sergei Dmitriev (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/

Experts say, “Join the Mindful Eating Movement, and you will eat less and never be fat.”

I started with an egg salad sandwich. Before I bit in, I sat quietly, looking at my sandwich, and  thinking about  the eggs that made the egg salad.

Just how did those eggs come to be? I continued my serious meditation. Well, there had to be a boy chicken and a girl chicken, I think.

Then  I started thinking about chickens mating. Hmm. I visualized the chickens in my mind.

I was so busy thinking about chickens going “all the way” that I absent-mindedly bit into the egg salad sandwich and continued eating it all up.

I don’t think this is how mindful eating is supposed to work. I will need to learn more.