Today I went to the grocery store with my father. We had to visit the local Jewel, which is an always crowded dump, and Trader Joe's, which is always full of wonderful stuff but doesn't carry staples like dishwasher fluid or Diet Dr. Pepper.
Since we live in busy River North, our course from store to store takes us past things that are destinations for some citygoers, like the Weber Grill restaurant (one of several reasons why Chicago's Near North Side smells always smells like meat) or the giant Medinah Temple that's now a Bloomingdale's home store, a switch in occupancy that has always struck me as a pointed commentary on religion and commerce.
Because it's January, and it's Chicago, being outside is something of an x-treme sport. So, to break up the trek from Jewel to TJ's, we wordlessly decided to cut through the aforementioned Temple Bloomingdale's and safe ourselves a city block of outdoor walking. I heard a saleswoman mention that all "gadgets" were on sale, which struck me as a pretty vague sale classification. Right as we were leaving the store to head back to the frigid streets, my dad spotted some women leaving with huge, clear plastic bags full of pillows. Dad wondered aloud if pillows were on sale. And that's when I saw it: next to me stood a huge sign that read "One Day Sale."
This is how a short trip out for groceries turned into an hourlong pillow shopping spree. My father isn't much of a bargain hunter, but when you're already in the same building as a One Day Sale, and, wonder of wonders, you actually NEED something, there's no turning back.
We came home with a small fortune of pillows and pillow covers...and no groceries. Dropping our own huge, clear plastic bags on the floor, we trekked back out for somethings edible.
I really admire my dad's willingness to spend money on nice things, and I look forward to one day having enough money to follow in his footsteps. For now, though, I'll have to be content with enjoying being a participant in his success story, and hope that someday I'll be able to furnish my own kids with surprise pillows and pillow covers without a second thought.