In about 20 minutes, I am going to go to the store.
In an ideal world, I would sign up for a zillion CSAs and have fresh, healthful, delicious food delivered to a convenient pickup location directly from the farm, sidestepping all the middle men and supporting local agrifolks directly. This is not the reality of my world at this time.
So instead, I’m about to go to the grocery store. We have approximately 3 items of food in this house, and that is nowhere near enough to make a nutritious dinner. Besides, I shop for a week at a time, and it’s a lot like retail therapy for me, in a sad sort of way that would embarrass the 20-year-old version of myself.
Before I leave the house, however, I am taking a moment to gird my loins with the Anti-Temptation Armor of Righteous Shopping Vengeance. The store is a dangerous place for those of us with food addictions, and a doubly dangerous place for those of us who also harbor a minor addiction to Getting a Great Deal–it’s a mighty rare day that the buy-one-get-one-free deal, for instance, is on fresh vegetables; far more frequently those sorts of deals are reserved for the alarming packaged frankenfoods lurking in the gauntlet of the middle aisles.
So I believe I shall amend one of my previous mantras as follows:
The existence of food does not obligate me to its consumption, AND
The existence of Oreos do not obligate me to their purchase.
Oreos are delicious. I dunk them in milk and eat them slightly softened, and left to my own devices, I will eat every Oreo between here and the Canadian border in one sitting. I am given to understand that there are people (or possibly alien life forms on Earth) who can eat one or two Oreos and put the rest away for later. I am not one of those people, not even on a “strong willpower” day. On a “strong willpower” day I stop eating Oreos somewhere around the Dakotas, instead of making it all the way to Canada.
So I am not allowed to have Oreos in the house, because as I am learning, it is far easier to make the wise choice (where by “wise” I mean “the one which supports my health and nutrition goals”) one time at the store, rather than having to re-make that decision every single time I walk into the kitchen, which is surprisingly frequent now that I’ve started drinking more water and need refills throughout the day.
Therefore today at the store I shall make wise choices, to save myself from having to make wise choices later when I am not wearing the Anti-Temptation Armor. I shall allow myself to walk right past the good deals on things that say “froot” or “chocolate-flavored candy pieces” or “now with more antioxidants!!!!!!!” on the label. I shall arm myself with the knowledge that if a particular food item can be sold for less than half the original retail price, then the economics of its production are probably alarming–the more people are involved, the more an item will cost (people don’t work for free, y’know, and don’t get me started on labor rights for immigrants), so if a company can afford to sell its product for 25 cents per can, then there were probably very few people–and a whole lotta machines–involved in its production. Do I really want to eat food that got spit out of a machine? I mean, really?
So I shall pass up the great deals. I shall stride boldly past the Oreos and ignore their plaintive cries. I shall make good decisions this one time this week, which will enable my good decisions for the rest of the week (it’s hard to eat Oreos that you don’t have). I shall take up my sword and shield and go confidently unto the store of groceries, and I shall purchase according to my budget and my goals.
And I won’t even hit the candy rack by the checkstand on my way out.
…I make no guarantees about the Woman’s World stand, though. I love that magazine.