I always thought “Sober up, we’re going to Wal-Mart” was my favorite Wally World quote of all time.
But I’ve gotta say, “Wanna ride bikes to Wal-Mart?” sure gives it a run for its money. I mean…it just sounds like something an eight-year-old boy living in rural Alabama would say, right?
This is precisely why my answer was “no”.
Correction. “Oh hell no.”
Actually, I turned down such a golden opportunity as I didn’t feel like carrying my bulky bike helmet through the store while we picked up whatever it was that Scott so desperately needed at 8:30pm on a Sunday night.
“Oh…is that all?” Scott replied. “You don’t have to wear your helmet…it’s only going to take us two minutes to ride there.”
Normally, I’m pretty adamant about wearing my helmet. I’m not the most skilled cyclist, and no matter how much the stupid thing messes up my weave, I much prefer a bad hair day to brain damage, or worse, a forehead scab.
Forehead scabs don’t make friends, people.
If anyone is capable of attaining a forehead scab while riding a bike at low-speed, it is most certainly this girl. Hence, the helmet.
But Scott was right…the bike ride would take five minutes tops, and I probably didn’t need to wear my helmet. A grin of delight slowly spread across my face as I realized how awesome it was that I wasn’t going to mess up my hair on this bike ride.
And then I realized that all of this meant we live really close to Wal-Mart. Like…walking distance close. Suddenly, I no longer felt awesome. Even though my hair did look pretty fly.
There’s something deliciously ironic about commuting to Wal-mart via bicycle with a Louis Vuitton tucked carefully in your basket.
Told you my hair looked fly. (Fedoras are so the new helmets.)
We hopped on our bikes, and were off. Something about riding into the sunset on a warm summer night felt wonderfully nostalgic. I was transported back to a time of innocence. A time of begging my parents for money to pay the ice cream man. A time of slap bracelets, Capri Suns and watching “Hey Dude” marathons.
A time where going to Wal-mart wasn’t shameful at all…it was simply a place your parents picked up granola bars and sunscreen before heading to the water park.
I felt like I was 12 again. Which is probably why I insisted Scott snap this photo of me flashing a peace sign as I pedaled past the store entrance with my best iCarly-inspired swagger.
As Scott secured our bikes to the rack, I gazed off into the distance, taking in a scene that was quite literally bursting at the seams with patriotism–a true Wal-mart sunset…complete with the American flag.
The pregnant teenager smoking a cig’ in the background only added to the ambiance. (As did the angry gang of Sk8r gurlz scrawling curse words on the ground with sidewalk chalk just ten yards away.)
It almost seemed too good to be true.
And it was. Oh believe me, it was.
It quickly became apparent that Scott had somehow forgotten the combination to our bike lock. After about ten minutes of scrambling he suggested I wait outside, while he picked up the groceries.
For the second time that night, I channeled my inner Shaniqua, and unleashed my very best “Oh hell no.” complete with a ghetto fabulous finger snap. It wasn’t my fault he had forgotten the combination, and I wasn’t about to be left to fend for myself against the angry Sk8r gurlz while Scott spent twenty minutes debating which jug of orange juice was cheapest.
“Tell me what we need…I’ll make it quick.” I snapped.
“Katrina…just wait out here. I’ll take care of it.”
“No. Tell me what we need…I’m a more efficient shopper than you are.”
“Alright, alright. We’re out of orange juice. Also, let’s get some vanilla soy milk…maybe some rice milk, too. And you can pick up one of those big frozen bags of fruit if you want.”
All of these ingredients sounded very familiar. I could almost make out the sound of the Blendtec, laughing maniacally in the distance.
“Scott–tell me again…why exactly did we come here tonight?”
“Because. It’s a nice night for a bike ride.”
“A nice night for a bike ride? Or a nice night for a smoothie?”
If you’ve spent time on this blog, you’re most likely familiar with Scott’s smoothie problem. If not, you can get all of the details here. Let’s just say his “devil smoothies” each contain at least $40 worth of ingredients. They also drove him to drop $400 on an evil blender that has quickly become the nemesis that taunts me while perched smugly atop my kitchen counter.
I think the only thing worse than coming to terms with the fact that you just rode your bike to Wal-Mart is realizing that you just rode your bike to Wal-Mart to enable your husband’s smoothie habit. At this point, it was too late to turn back.
I left him outside with the bikes, and quickly purchased all of the smoothie ingredients. We packed my basket full of the groceries, discovering there was no longer room for Louis to ride safely in the carriage of my bike.
“I’ll hold him.” Scott sighed.
Clearly, he knew I wasn’t coordinated enough to ride my bike back home with a basket full of groceries and a handbag on my arm without obtaining an embarrassing forehead scab.
That, combined with the fact that he finally referred to Louis as ”him” instead of “it” was enough to win me over. I was no longer upset about the smoothie situation. I rode home behind my handbag toting husband with a smile on my face…fully enjoying the sight of him daintily carrying Louis in a manner that wouldn’t scuff his patent leather exterior, but also made him invisible to the parade of men passing us on the highway in their macho trucks.
It might have been even more beautiful than the Wal-Mart sunset. I would have taken a picture of Scott’s act of compassion, but it was one of those moments that I simply wanted to take in with my own two eyes.
Also…I probably would have crashed my bike into the ditch if I had tried to pull out of my phone.
Not to mention the fact that Scott would quite literally kill me if I posted a photo of him riding a bike while holding a handbag on the internet.
(Okay…he probably wouldn’t kill me. But I know who I would blame if I somehow acquired a nasty forehead scab.)
Right at that instant, Scott turned around and yelled “Hey! You should totally take a picture of me right now!”
That right there? That willingness to be photographed carrying the handbag of shame and manipulation? That is love. And that is exactly what I tried to focus on when we walked into our kitchen and I saw the Blendtec sitting on the counter, already halfway full of smoothie ingredients. Seriously…there was enough inside the pitcher to make a 40 ounce smoothie. Our bike ride to Wal-Mart had been completely unnecessary.
But, this is my husband we’re talking about. A man who has deep-rooted beliefs about the importance of making 90 ounce raw sweet potato smoothies and drinking them via a stainless steel straw, straight out of the pitcher. He is addicted to smoothies, much like I am addicted to handbags. We both do ridiculous things to feed our habits, and his obsession is actually much healthier and far less expensive than mine. Truly, I’m in no place to judge.
So, instead of throwing a fit and spraying soy milk across the kitchen counter in a fit of rage, I chose to laugh at the ridiculousness of our late night bike ride, and smile upon realizing that I actually kind of had fun.
Because sometimes? Sometimes you just have to ride your bike Wal-mart and enjoy the parking lot sunset.
Liked this? Then try these: