Friday, April 15, 2011

The Principle of It

Bill and I stopped by Wegman's to have dinner and while we were at it pick up a few things .  We actually only planned to buy bruschetta fixin's, but I love putzing around in Wegman's - and always end up remembering things we need and seeing other things we'd like to try.

We ate first, Bill had the Chinese buffet and I had the salad bar.  Both of us were happy! 

We find baguettes already cut for bruschetta in the bakery.  If you buy 1 bag it is $2.25.  If you buy 2 if is $4.00.  My thrifty husband decides on two.  We get basil, tomatoes, parmesian cheese, play doh (not kidding ) - So we continue our shopping trip, and as Bill fades out, he leaves the store and waits for me on a shopping bench.  I check out (swipe your Shopper's card please, swipe your credit card please) put all my cards away and as I walk away, check out the price of the baguettes.  Right - they charged me $2.25 each.  Grrrrrrr.

Fifty cents.  Hmmmm - Bill is waiting for me - do I want to go through the hassle for 50 cents?  Yup, I do.  And it was a hassle.  I explain to the clerk, clerk tells second clerk.  Clerk calls the bakery department, first person has no idea, has to get department manager.  Department manager confirms the price is 2 for $4.00.  Clerk to me, "Ma'am, can I see the baguette bag?"  I rummage around and get the bag, Clerk scans the code.  I put it away.  "Can I see the bag again?"  Sure here it is.  "Can I see your shopper's card?" I dig it out.  Now I am expecting now to hand over a credit card - when I'm handed 50 cents - in cash.  "Have a nice evening!"  Imagine that!

The price of principle - All because we wanted to have bruschetta tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Who am I, really?

I started reading the book "The Help" yesterday.  Set in the early 1960's, it is a remarkable look at the separation of white and black people in Mississippi.  I've already discovered how clueless I was about segregation, integration and the civil rights movement.  Previous depictions of brutal slave owners and post Civil War vicious white employers made it easy to characterize them as evil or heartless, one dimensional people - not like me.  In this book, the conversations between black maid and white employer or white women in front of or within earshot of black maids bring home the segregation and intimidation better than anything I have seen and read to this point.   And make it personal and probable to identify with both sides, it could be me.

Sometimes my ability to miss or dismiss big issues amazes me.   My tendency is to ignore, dismiss or worse, agree with the masses.  I think about the roundup of Jews in Europe and wonder what I would think, and what would I do.  After all, I am 100% German, but what does that mean?  Would I have sided with Adolf? {shiver}  Had I been raised in the south, would I have participated in slavery?  I hate these questions because I'm afraid of the answers. 

I try and be a "good person" and live a Christian life.  Daily, I surprise and disappoint myself with the good and not so good.  But these questions and others like them do disturb me.  Who am I, really?