Monday, September 7, 2009

THIS is why I don't go to home improvement stores.

I am allowed in Home Depot!

"But only because you promised not to whine," the DNB notes pointedly as we enter. I was banned from home improvement warehouses two years ago, and frankly, it's probably saved my marriage.

"I promised no such thing," I reply. Because I didn't. This is a trip of calculated risk all around - the DNB tolerating me because he wants the company, and my tolerating the store because my husband can't be trusted to choose the stain color for our bed.

"It'll be quick," he hisses as we head toward the paint department.

"As if any trip into this desolate labyrinth could be fast," I mutter.

He makes a throat slitting gesture at me, which is totally uncalled for.

We (I) choose a lovely mahogany stain, and because I'm already bored, the DNB leaves me standing at the end of an aisle while he tracks down the finishing rags. I thumb through Ty Pennington's magazine while I wait (he has a magazine? Is that really necessary?). When the DNB reappears, we head toward the self checkout lanes.

And this is when I enter the Twilight Zone. (To the tweens reading this, I'm referring to the 1980's science fiction series, not a Robert Pattison autograph event. Wiki it.)

I pull the first item from under my arm and scan it. It beeps, as EVERYTHING AT THE SELF-CHECK LANE DOES. "Please wait for assistance" flashes across the screen in front of us. I sigh loudly.

The Guardian of the Self-Checks, who looks exactly like Wayne Campbell, appears to help. He tries to rescan the item, then looks it up on another computer.

"Umm," he says when he returns, "I don't think we actually sell this."

That's when I finally take a good look at the item I scanned, the item I've been carrying around for presumably our entire shopping trip. It's a can of hideously ugly "natural" wood stain.

Wayne calls over another employee and they confer/party-on briefly. "Yeah, we definitely don't carry this brand," the other employee informs me.

The DNB, meanwhile, is only slightly more confused than I am.

"Well it's definitely not mine," I explain, trying to imply that it's a totally fugly color, and thank goodness I didn't allow the DNB to do this alone because he very well could have walked out of there with something similar.

Now the employees are just as confused as we are because why would I be carrying around a stain that they don't sell that also isn't mine? I KNOW.

We pay for the stain we actually *do* want, and as we walk to the car, the DNB finally speaks.

"How in the world did you ... ?"

"I don't even know, dude. I don't even know."

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