Satire | Shopping at Market District: Special coronavirus edition

By Allison Dantinne, Senior Staff Columnist

I have three packets of chicken flavored ramen, a bag of easy-peel clementines, and my roommate’s oat milk. I cannot support the oat milk, so I objectively have two foods. I cannot sustain myself on two foods of this quantity. I must walk to the grocery store and get some things to sustain me.

2:13 p.m. I have arrived at the grocery store, equipped with one reusable freezer bag, hoping it will limit the amount of things I purchase, though I do not think I will become a food hoarder, on account of, like, caring about other people. I take a cart. There are no cart wipes. OK.

2:14 p.m. I go inside and am immediately confronted with a chocolate chip cookie cake. I take in the icing piped around its edges, the yellow script “Happy Birthday,” and think about putting it in my cart. I’ve never had a cookie cake, and I’m a Gemini, so it’s not like it’s my birthday anytime soon, and yet I feel drawn to it. No. No. I am not getting the cookie cake.

2:15 p.m. I must leave the baked goods section so it cannot tempt me any longer.

2:15 p.m. I will however, buy two avocados for three dollars. I don’t care if this isn’t a good price. I don’t care if I have no money. I don’t care about finances anymore. The economy’s tanking and I’m probably not going to get a job for a while after this happens. I’m definitely never going to have a house. The best I can do is mash up one of these bad boys with some sour cream and enjoy some serotonin for the eight to 12 minutes it takes me to eat one bowl of guac.

2:17 p.m. I don’t want to inspect all the bananas, but as all sane people who do not write articles about the perfect banana know, bananas must be yellow with a little bit of browning in order to come home with me. I pick up one bunch. I guess they’re yellow enough. Into the cart they go.

2:18 p.m. I get spinach, a cup of cut pineapple, and a cup of cut mango.

2:20 p.m. There is a woman next to the mixed nuts, talking on the phone. She’s wearing leather boots, big turquoise rings and a mask slung around her neck. She is angry. She is angrily talking about the “statehouse” and “Richard.” What is happening there? Why? Richard?

2:20 p.m. I’m now looking at the premade salads intently. I appear as though I am studying every option featuring ancient grains to choose the superior ancient grain, though in actuality, I am studying this woman’s phone conversation.

2:21 p.m. Nothing truly holds my attention anymore.

2:21 p.m. I choose no premade salads and instead get a pack of sandwich pepperoni from the deli case. I will make nothing out of this, instead choosing to eat this as a fun meat snack.

2:23 p.m. I remember that I told Leah, our lovely opinions editor, that I will make a quiche and give her a piece. This was before I understood the dangers of sharing a piece of quiche with a friend. I mentally note that I must pick up pie crusts.

2:23 p.m. Actually I could make pie crust. I have nothing better to do.

2:23 p.m. No. God no. It will not achieve the same flakiness. I shall not make an embarrassment quiche.

2:23 p.m. I’m gonna buy the pie crust.

2:26 p.m. What will I eat for breakfast? I stand before the cereal, thinking about how much my body hates and loves sugar like a scorned lover, thinking about how I have some apple cinnamon instant oatmeal at home. I could eat that, I suppose. Then I consider how oatmeal makes me feel like I’m eating a water-based, hot oat soup, which is mostly due to my own incompetence, as I don’t know how to accurately measure how much water should go into the instant oatmeal before it goes in the microwave, and then I have to begrudgingly eat it in the same way a parent has to hang their child’s drawing of a “cat” on the fridge — I have made something for myself, and I must appreciate it.

2:27 p.m. I choose a box of Kellogg’s Special K Red Berries.

2:29 p.m. I get the last box of diet Arizona green tea. Things are looking up for me.

2:32 p.m. It seems they’re never going to have that banana yogurt with the little cup of almonds and dark chocolate on the side ever again. I haven’t found it anywhere outside of Market To Go within the past year. I instead take a pack of the coconut flavor and pour one out for that banana yogurt.

2:36 p.m. I enter the frozen food section and immediately decide I will have an entire box of TGI Fridays mozzarella sticks for dinner tonight. No one can stop me. I can’t stop me, and frankly, I wouldn’t want to stop me.

2:37 p.m. There’s a bottle of discount conditioner in the frozen aisle.

2:37 p.m. Yeah, I could use some conditioner. I put it in the cart.

2:40 p.m. Wow, I’d love to eat a quesadilla, but the big bags of cheese are all gone.

2:41 p.m. I think two small bags of cheese make up one big bag of cheese. Then again, I haven’t done complex math in four years and I got a C in the only math class I had to take. Eh. I put both bags of cheese in my cart.

2:42 p.m. Eggs. I have to get eggs. For the quiche.

2:43 p.m. I look into each box of eggs. There are no eggs. None. There are two open cartons, both with broken eggs. But otherwise, no good eggs. I swear lowly. They took all the eggs. Everyone took all the eggs. What am I going to do for protein, just eat all this greek yogurt? How will I make a quiche? I hate America.

2:44 p.m. A man arranges the cartons of eggs so that all the broken ones are in the same carton. I continue to swear to myself.

2:46 p.m. I go to check out. This country is a disgrace. This earth is a disgrace. I wish it were flat so I could sail off and into the void. The void is probably full. I guess I will stay inside my house and eat these mozzarella sticks instead. Ugh.

Allison Dantinne primarily writes satire and humor for The Pitt News. Write to Allison at [email protected]