Monday, March 5, 2007

the dollar store

the wonders of traveling are that you get to go grocery shopping at cheap markets. in order to make my two hour each way drive worth it to go to temple city, CA for taekwondo, i used the trip as an opportunity to restock my fridge. when i stopped at this sketchy gas station somewhere in santa anna, there was a predominantly mexican supermarket next door so i went there to get my monthly supply of fresh low-cost immigrant picked produce.

when i went in the door it was pretty easy to notice that everyone i passed turned and stared at me for a second longer than people usually do. i guess i'm not as dark skinned and mexican looking as john wong. but hey, chinese people like cheap produce too, and even though we prefer to live in neighborhoods like la jolla, we try to shop as cheap as we can when we can.

so i ended up spending like $4.50 for a bunch of veggies. granted i got a lot of low-value stuff like cabbage..but i still don't ever anticipate being able to pay less than $5 at star or ralphs...for anything.

but the kicker is this. when i went to taekwondo later, there was a 99 cent store next door, so i went to get some food and water because i was hungry and hadn't eaten dinner. and this was one of those buy EVERYTHING 99 cent stores, from party supplies to groceries to wine. for future reference, it was on temple city blvd and las tunas rd in temple city.

i got a loaf of bread, a thing of orange marmalade, and a two gallon jug of water (which was 2 for 99 cents) but no fork or knife because i didn't want to get the party pack of 30. then i walked through their wine section and realized...this is a 99 cent store. wine for a buck? i have to try it. i asked the cashier "is this 99 cents?" and she said, "what's the name of this store?"

so now i have two bottles of their white wine - with funky labels such as "el bastardo" and "white lie." nice, sounds like a perfect frat party wine. imagine spending $20 on alcohol for a whole formal's worth of wine, and it's not cheap boxed wine, either.

i opened the el bastardo last night, and turns out this is really TASTY chardonnay. maybe i don't have the most refined of palates, but if i didn't tell you it was cheap wine you'd probably think that it was a decent, drinkable dinner white wine. i had it with a lean cuisine of turkey and green beans. almost like a thanksgiving meal, but for the po' folks.

the thing about wine is that it makes me eager. in real life, and in the video game world. (yes, i was drinking alone, while playing video games. fuck off) i was playing elder scrolls iv: oblivion, and it came to a point when i could no longer really control the character well - my understanding of what was happening and the need for stealth was gone. in one fight i simply charged in, started slacking and hacking at the enemy and just stood there taking hits like a drunk ass...and i killed him and won. and that's what 99 cent wine does to you and your character.

1 comment:

Nathan said...

You play Oblivion? Dang man I made the mistake of getting stuck in a dungeon in the main story arch when I hadn't really leveled up enough first. Now I have to get through this room where a whole bunch of Goblins just kill me as soon as I go in. Haven't played in a while though because I had bought Ghost Recon 2, then the Wii. Actually I haven't even opened Zelda yet, only beat the First mission in Ghost Recon, played Call of Duty 3 once, and have mostly been playing DBZ Budokai Tankaichi (sp?) 2. These games are like food to me, my eyes are always bigger than my stomach, and used games are cheap...