Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Tales From the Cigarette Counter *UPDATED*

Don't you find it annoying that dishonest people ruin things for honest people? This is a silly rant, but I've been hopelessly searching the recesses of my brain for blog fodder and I'm just going to go with it.
Craig uses a very specific type of razor blade: Gillette Mach3 Turbo. They're expensive, but they work well and he makes an 8 pack last about 8 weeks. Being clean shaven is a requirement for those who wear a military uniform, and for those with discerning tastes (cough...Alison...cough) so it's not like there is much choice in the matter. Yesterday I was made aware that a new package of razor blades was required. Since Craig failed to give me fair warning (or perhaps my razor blade replacement intuition is beginning to fizzle) he was forced to either use an older blade yesterday , or he may have used one of my disposables. I don't know, I forgot to ask. Anyway, since I'm playing hooky from the gym this morning due to the fact that I'm beginning to fall apart in my old age, I paid a visit to the commissary for a few items, including those heavily needed razor blades.

I like to buy them at the commissary because they're cheaper than any other place; cheap is my love language, in case you were wondering. I also buy them there because Wal Mart keeps them locked up in a cabinet, presumably because dishonest people steal them, and it's darn near impossible to find an associate to unlock the cabinet. I like the razor blade aisle as much as the next person, but I really do have more interesting things to do with my day (well, maybe) than stand in the aisle, staring at shaving cream bottles wondering why there are so many choices, all the while waiting for a less than enthusiastic Wal Mart worker to attend to my razor blade needs. I may have a pitiful social calendar, with gaping holes between scheduled events, but even I have limits on how I'd like to spend my time.

So off to the commiscary I went. First stop: razor blade aisle. And there next to the packages of cheapy disposables was a sign. A sign that told me to go to the cigarette counter to ask for razors (because that makes PERFECT sense) if I didn't see my brand of choice "stock" in the aisle. Clearly, possessing the skill of proper sentence structure and verb tense is optional for the sign makers at the commissary. Knowing full well that they must have experienced a lot of razor theft, I trudged to the cigarette/refund counter to get the razors. After waiting ten minutes for the slowest man in the world to receive a refund for Dr. Scholl's insoles from the slowest commissary worker ever, I asked the lady for Gillette Mach3 Turbo razor blades. She looked at me, slightly puzzled, and had me write the brand down. As it so happens, they don't carry them AT the cigarette counter; she had to use her walkie talkie to contact "M14" whoever that is. Only M14 didn't reply for a very. long. time. Seriously, I waited at least 15 minutes for M14. When M14 arrived with regular Mach 3 blades, I nicely asked if they happened to have Turbo, since, you know, that's what I asked for. He said no. They had Fusion, but not Turbo. M14 wasn't very happy when I told him that I didn't want the regular ones. It's only fair; I wasn't happy that I had to wait 25 minutes for razor blades. Besides, Craig likes Turbo, and if Craig wants Turbo, he'll get Turbo. After all, I make it my life's mission to make sure Craig gets EVERYTHING he wants. Um, I think my nose just grew a little. Trust me, if you've never seen my nose in person, this is not a good thing. I have very little growth room left before I reach freak show status. "Mommy look at that lady's pointy nose." "It's scary."

I've grown somewhat accostomed to people looking at me and then asking "Are you Greek or Italian?" And yet, I still find that question less than amusing.


I just find it so annoying that honest people are punished because a bunch of losers out there steal razor blades. I understand that stores need to protect themselves from theft; I really do. I just wish that people were more trustworthy. Not just because it's the right thing to do, but mostly because I seriously despise being inconvenienced. And it is, after all, all about me.

After my encounter with M14, I quickly grabbed the rest of the items on my list. Despite the commissary's failure to stock the razors I needed, they did have honeycrisp apples for $1.50/lb. Trust me, that's a steal. Normally they're at least $2.49 a pound. And worth every penny.

After I used the self checkout and yelled at the talking computer lady because she wouldn't accept my coupon, I stopped next door at the PX and bought Craig his razors. They were not locked up. The type I wanted was fully stocked. I did not have to wait 25 minutes.

I just love a happy ending.

UPDATE: Mere minutes after I hit the "publish post" button, Craig came traipsing through the door. Well, he traipsed just as well as someone who ran a marathon two days ago could possibly traipse. But anyway, I told him that I bought him his blasted razors. And then, he said "oh, I meant to tell you not to buy any razors because the disposable I used yesterday was awesome."
The disposable, the pink one he scoffed at upon my suggestion that he use, was awesome.


I spent 25 minutes of my life, 25 minutes I'll never get back, waiting at the cigarette counter for Gillette Mach3 Turbo razor blades. A LONG, futile wait.

The disposable was awesome.


Craig is going to test the longevity of the disposable before making any permanent razor blade decisions. No need to make hasty decisions when the smoothness of one's face is concerned.

And HE WILL use the razors I bought.

Oh yes, he will.

I'll make sure of it.



Sissy said...

Can you explain the difference between the commissary and the PX, for those of us non-military people? I don't know the terms, I don't think.

And yes, Charlie has used my pink razors a time or two, but then he switched to an electric so he could shave in the car. Then we were sent a sample of the Fusion razors in the mail, and I liked them, for my legs. It's sad, I know.

Alison said...

A military shopping primer:

The commissary is the grocery store and the PX is like Wal Mart. They have electronics, clothes, shoes, shampoo, make up, bedding, kitchen stuff, etc.
I go to the Commiscary because the food is generally cheaper than the regular grocery stores, but almost never go to the PX. Although, I actually went to the PX on Saturday, as well. I bought some running shoes. But otherwise, it's not all that great.

And then to get even more complicated, we also have MCSS (military clothing and sales) for uniforms, boots and uniform paraphernalia (pins and rank) and the PXtra for outdoor/garden stuff, toys, furniture, appliances and exercise equipment.

I like men's razors, too. I think they work better. It's funny that Charlie shaves in the car. I guess it's just like women putting on their makeup while driving. Whatever saves you some time.