Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Forget It

I lost my cart at Kings this morning.

I went to Kings to buy almond butter because I forgot to buy it at Whole Foods when I was there yesterday. The main reason I went to Whole Foods was to get some Omega-3/6/9 oil that I heard about here on Patch. I’ve known about Essential Fatty Acids for a while, but I am grossed out by fish oil. I’ve tried to get my EFAs through sprinkling ground flax seed on my oatmeal in the morning, and while I enjoy its fibrous, nutty goodness, it doesn’t seem, after a year of sprinkling, that it’s done what I had hoped it would do. Which is to make my brain a bit sharper.

I did get the EFA oil, but neglected, while there, to get the other two main ingredients I needed for my smoothie recipe – the smoothie into which I would pour my EFA oil and quickly turn into the poster child for brain function that I’ve been hoping to become.

Long ago, a friend had speculated that a woman’s mental acuity drops 15% after childbirth – and another 15% with every child she bears thereafter. In my experience, I would say the drop is at least that. And it doesn’t seem temporary. Nearly 17 years later, I am still groping for words and wandering in and out of rooms looking for something I need very urgently, until it occurs to me that I have no recollection at all of what I’m looking for.

Fortunately, my husband has some weird superpower that enables him to roll with most of it. “Can you bring me the thing from the thing?” I’ll call out to him from the kitchen, and somehow he’ll know that I want is the “basil” from the “porch” and he appears with it.

Others have simply gotten used to my fumphering. “What’s the word I’m looking for,” I’ll say to a friend, completely disrupting the flow of conversation. “You know, when a person gets himself involved in things. Like events. What’s he called?”

“Um, a ‘participant’?”

“Yes, yes!” I’ll say, a little nervous that I couldn’t recall what’s probably a third grade vocabulary word.

Sometimes I just go blank.

I was almost at the end of my Kings run when I realized I hadn’t yet gotten the nut butter. I left my cart back by the chicken and started up and down the aisles trying to remember where the peanut butter lives. Eventually I found it, secured my almond butter and went to retrieve my cart over by the registers. It wasn’t there. “I lost my cart,” I said to the manager. She moved to put out an APB. “What’s in it?” she asked.

Although I knew my cart was full, ice cream was all I could recall.

Suddenly I remembered that I was looking in the wrong place, went back to the chicken department, got my cart, checked out and headed home.

I was very depleted from all that remembering, so while I was putting away groceries, I pulled out the blender and started assembling my smoothie ingredients. Ice. Silken tofu. Soy milk. EFA oil. Nut butter. Wait, where’s the nut butter?

It’s not in the bags. It’s not in the fridge. It’s not on the counter. I look in the fridge again. And in the bags again. And then the fridge again. Then I look at the receipt.

I call Kings. “Hi, this is the woman who just lost her shopping cart,” I say. (She knows exactly who it is.) “I paid for my nut butter, but I can’t find it in my bags.”

No one turned in nut butter, she says, but come on back and we’ll give you another one.

This is one of the things I really love about Kings (the other is their apples), but still, I’m hungry and I want my smoothie, and I don’t feel like getting in the car and driving back there. I wish I could wiggle my nose or something and just make it appear. I grabbed my keys and clomped out to the car, far more heavy-footed than I needed to be since there was no one around to witness my petulance.

On a lark, I took a quick look in the trunk. Guess who forgot to bring one of the bags in? Nut butter? Check. I was so relieved I completely lost track of the monologue that was taking place in my head, the one berating myself for not paying closer attention to things. I headed back into the kitchen to finish my smoothie, which, as I recall, was very, very delicious.

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