Friday, March 12, 2010

Splat & Sniff

I didn’t plan to accessorize with Marinara sauce tonight.
I certainly didn’t expect to have it from the tip of my shoes to the top of my shoulder.

We were beginning to check out at Trader Joe’s in Shrewsbury tonight. The nice gal working the register (I’m sorry, I can’t remember anyone’s name.) pulled our carriage toward her and began to unload it and scan the items. (Yes, they really do empty your cart, ring up your order and they will even bag your groceries for you if you want!) She reached for a small jar of marinara sauce and somehow it came in contact with the counter and crashed to the floor. Broken glass and marinara sauce went everywhere. Luckily no one was cut by the glass, but I was in just the wrong location and took a direct sauce hit - from tiny spots to quarter sized splats and splotches. I sort of froze. The poor gal who dropped the sauce apologized, to which I replied it was just an accident. As I stood there not quite knowing how to de-sauce-ify myself, another TJ’s staff person came over and whisked our grocery cart off to an open register to be checked out. Chuck headed off to replace the marinara sauce. Another gal came over and took charge of the clean up and the poor gal who had dropped the sauce brought me some paper towels.

Paper towels are a poor adversary to marinara sauce. But I blotted and brushed as best I could. All the while feeling very grateful that I had chosen to wear a pair of gray slacks and a navy blue top today - not something in ivory, ecru or winter white! I thought I was all set or as all set as I could be, when I realized the sauce had also blazed a trail on my right arm up to my shoulder. I headed to the paper towel dispenser and went for round two of blot and brush. Once I had done what I could, short of a washing machine, to make myself presentable, I went to join Chuck who was finishing paying for our groceries. As I caught up to him, I spotted a bouquet of flowers popping out of the top of one of our grocery bags. The Trader Joe’s gals had given them to us for being such “good sports”. So not only did the staff work like a well oiled machine to get everything sorted out as best they could, we got flowers to boot. Well played TJ’s. That’s why we love you. And the smell of the flowers helped to offset the Eau d’ Italian Kitchen I wore for the rest of the night!


dancingmorganmouse said...

O dear, o dear. But you took it well, which was nice of you, and they did what they could, no doubt feeling very glad you weren't throwing a giant hissy fit.
Still, it could have been worse. As I was getting my lunch last week I watched in horror as one poor girl ended up wearing an entire bowl of laksa, bright yellow, very hot laksa. She too, sort of froze.

Anonymous said...

I was in Trader Joes last week in Roswell, GA. Nothing got spilled but it sounds like the same level of friendly, upbeat service that I received.


Have you tried the very small rounds of sourdough bread that come in a bag? Delicious

Pink Granite said...

Hi DMM -
I guess we did take it in stride - post my freezing in place! We thought about it after and wondered about them saying we were good sports. That was when we realized some people might have done exactly what you wrote and thrown a giant hissy fit. All that would have done would be to upset absolutely everyone - including us - and shone a giant spotlight on the lady blotting marinara sauce off her clothes at the front of the store! Oh my, no thank you!

I feel for the poor gal with the hot laksa! A far worse predicament than I was in!
- Lee

Hi Gail -
We've been in lots of Trader Joe's (something like 8 or more, in three states) and they all have incredibly good people working in them. I can't remember ever encountering a grouch.

When Mom first went to the Warwick store on her own, so many staff members asked after her to make sure she was finding everything she wanted, Mom was convinced she must have looked ill!

I haven't tried the very small rounds of sourdough bread that come in a bag, but I will look for them. The bread prices at TJs are excellent. We picked up a "Blarney Scone" - a small loaf of Irish soda bread - sliced, toasted and spread with butter - yum!

And of course we love the tasting area! That strategy of theirs is brilliant. And yesterday, an employee was walking up and down the aisles just passing out almond biscotti.

So what's a little marinara sauce between friends?
- Lee

Kate said...

Trader Joe's is the bomb.

Phil once made me eat in the cafeteria in IKEA (let's not dwell on my feelings about that insane asylum of DIY furniture hell) and he took a bite of a buffalo wrap that sprayed sauce all over me across the table. Not pretty.

Pink Granite said...

Hi Kate -
I agree, TJ's is the bomb!

So sorry about the Buffalo sauce incident. Under any conditions it would have been awful. But knowing your feelings about IKEA, being in their cafe, must have made it excruciating!
- A.L.