I'D ALMOST RATHER STARVE THAN... - 1010 Park Place
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I’D ALMOST RATHER STARVE THAN…

PHOTOGRAPHY BY BRENDA COFFEE, ©2019
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One morning a friend asked me how long could I survive with the food I had in my kitchen should there be a manmade or a natural disaster? My answer was, “Until One O’clock.” I don’t think that’s the answer he was looking for, but instead, something that showed I had an emergency supply of canned food, bottled water and things like MREs (the Army’s Meals Ready-to-Eat). Have you ever eaten MREs? When I was the first journalist to drive and fire the Army’s M1 tank, I spent three days with soldiers who would do almost anything to trade their canned stew for a John Wayne bar: a hard, dry, chocolate peanut bar that required an Act of Congress in order to swallow it. Tell me that doesn’t speak volumes about the stew.

But now that recurring kidney stones are on my radar, and I can no longer eat chocolate, we can scratch John Wayne bars off my emergency list.

I’d almost rather starve than go to the grocery store. Yes, I know there’s curbside pickup, but I don’t trust someone else to get the perfect ratio of ripe to unripe bananas. So as my rations run low, I live on almond butter—straight from the jar—and Amy’s frozen pizza until my energy level drops to DEFCON 6, and I’m forced to go grocery shopping or to the emergency room. 

Actually I feel that way about shopping of any kind—except online—especially when I’m with girlfriends who like to hit every store in the area. Stores full of tchotchkes give me heart palpitations, so I windup outside on the street with the husbands, waiting for their wives.

That said, when I was in Las Vegas a couple of weeks ago, I went window shopping at the Wynn hotel and the Fashion Show Mall across the street. Both are more about people watching and at the Wynn, things—literally in the window—I can’t afford. 

My favorite windows at the Wynn have always been Chanel’s. The Wynn has not one, but two, Chanel boutiques. I think they want to make it more convenient so in case your cocktails—and casino winnings—kick in at the same time… You won’t have to walk too far and maybe sober up and change your mind. 

The same philosophy holds true for the minibar in the rooms as well. While I could easily stave off DEFCON 6, at almost $20 for a small bag of anything, it would be cheaper to take an Uber to the local grocery store. I guess that’s one way to get me to the store. Don’t get me wrong… I LOVE the Wynn, but since I’m going back later this summer, I’ve started saving for some cookies. They’re much better than a John Wayne bar.

Am I the only one who doesn’t like to shop?

Love, Brenda

31 Comments

  • Reply Taste of France June 29, 2019 at 7:57 am

    I hate supermarkets, superstores and mass retail of just about anything. Yes, sometimes one must hold one’s nose, grab a cart and load up on toilet paper. However, I love going to the market to get fruits, vegetables, cheeses and bread. That’s a party.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 2:34 pm

      TOF, Today is a DEAFCON 6 day, so I must hold my nose and go buy everything! xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Laurel June 29, 2019 at 10:49 am

    I used to love to shop, and now I’m just not a fan. I find myself trying things on and leaving discouraged. Like you, online is my jam, and I do often end up returning things to a brick and mortar store. But overall, shopping has lost its allure long ago. As for the grocery store, I’ve taken to going early in the morning when no one is there. The crowds are at least part of what I hate most about it. And I’m with you on having someone choose my produce. They would never get the bananas right. LOL.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 2:36 pm

      Hi Laurel, I wonder what it is about women of a certain age that we’re no longer interested in shopping? We have the money and the time… Interesting that it’s lost its allure for you as well. Thanks for making me feel like I’m not alone. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Rena June 29, 2019 at 11:30 am

    You are so hilarious! I feel the same way. I used to take momma & her sisters and nieces shopping and I hated it. I was always outside waiting. I love to shop online but avoid every other store like the plague. I’m lucky enough to have a hubby who loves to shop so he does all of the food shopping otherwise I would starve myself. I often forget to eat sometimes days at a time unless he’s there pushing it on me lol. He also does the laundry and just about everything else so I think I’ll keep him for a while. He often gets so aggravated with me he will go and buy me clothes. I’m a homebody so a good pair of pj’s are sufficient for me lol.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 2:39 pm

      Rena! We have so many similarities! Could we be twins from another mother? Today is a DEAFCON 6 day, but it’s late in the day so I’m going to postpone it until tomorrow. Perhaps I’ll seek out a drive thru taco or something. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Sandra Sallin - Apart From My Art June 29, 2019 at 11:52 am

    You are hysterical. Somehow I just don’t make it to the market.I seem to be busy at home, writing, photoshopping, making books, anything other than the market. Doesn’t mean I’ve lost weight. I find that we order in a lot or make do with peanut butter. Stuff like that. Re: shopping. There just seems to be more on line except for my shopping at Bryn Walker in Santa Monica. I can always find things that fit and look good. But I’m like you. I love shopping on line. Except for makeup. There I prefer to buy in the stores. Do you know Lisa Eldriges YouTube makeup channel. She’s coming out with a new series of lipsticks this Tuesday. Get in line before they’re all sold out. Oh the Wyn? I adore their beds. Love looking over the lagoon bar at the slide show. I think that’s it. Over and out. You really are funny.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 3:20 pm

      Sandy, I started to respond to you about 40 minutes ago but got caught up watching Lisa Eldridge. She’s gorgeous! Could almost be a twin to the woman my friend married last weekend in Puerto Vallarta… She’s also gorgeous and sweet! I’m so happy for them! The Wynn… Do they call that the “toaster?” The big screen behind the lagoon? I could see it from my room a few weeks ago and always imagine a giant slice of toasted bread popping up. Love, love the Wynn! xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Terry June 29, 2019 at 12:26 pm

    As a reformed shopaholic, I don’t shop much anymore. Hubby buys most of the groceries. I keep saying I want some new clothes but I do nothing about it. I don’t NEED any new clothes being retired and pretty much a homebody. My home is well-appointed. I’m with you, Brenda, regarding grocery store pick-up. I’m sure we would get dinged cans and overripe bananas! We don’t have much of a grocery stash but we are within walking distance of WalMart and I’m sure they would be open during a national emergency!

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 3:24 pm

      Terry, A reformed shopaholic… That’s interesting. How did you do that? I’ve never been interested in shopping except for art and antiques and that started in my early 20’s. WalMart will be the most popular place incase of an emergency, don’t you know? Loved your comment. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Colleen Fuller June 29, 2019 at 4:09 pm

    Love your pics of the Chanel Boutique windows. The online consignment store The RealReal has Chanel items for much less than the original prices. I’ve been pleased with the few pieces I’ve been able to purchase. I think DEFCON 5 is the least severe condition and DEFCON 1 the most severe condition.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 3:27 pm

      Colleen, Thank you so much for clarifying the DEFCON scale for me! If that’s the case then I should change my post from DEFCON 6 to 1. When my body is low on nutrients, it’s truly a do or die emergency situation. I’ve been known to start eating things before I’ve even left the store. Also great to know about RealReal. I’ve never purchased anything from them but know they have gently worn things for much less than retail. Thanks so much! xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Squeak June 29, 2019 at 4:18 pm

    I DETEST grocery shopping! I swear my blood pressure rises every time I enter a grocery store. I’m not too fond of clothes shopping either – although I’ve found one store in my city that sells clothes I love in my size, so I don’t mind shopping there too much. I do love to shop for things for my home in antique stores and one-of-a-kind decor stores. And I love going to garden centers. If it’s about making my home beautiful, I’m in.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 3:29 pm

      I There Squeak!! I’m with you about stores that will beautify my home: antiques and garden centers. Count me in! But I just can’t make myself go to a brick and mortar retail clothing store anymore. Great to see you here! Hope your summer’s going well. Do you have anything planned? xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Cat June 29, 2019 at 5:47 pm

    I love farmer’s market but don’t get to them as much as I could. I don’t mind Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods and Walmart – the three places I shop most with occasional trips to my local grocery store. I go during the week day so there aren’t too many crowds. Hubby never has shopped and I have to talk to him on his cell and direct him at the store, if he’s shopping! If I were single, I’d rarely go, as I have a very small appetite and cooking most really good recipes takes SO long and doesn’t seem worth it if I’m full after 4 or 5 bites (of course, I’m hungry a few hours later and can eat leftovers!). An Instant Pot has changed my life and made cooking a lot faster and easier. My life would have been different if it was around back when my kiddos were young.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 3:32 pm

      Cat, I can do Whole Foods but only on my way home from the gym. Once I’m home… I stay there. Like you, I’ve decided cooking is no longer worth the trouble. This from a woman who used to love to entertain and try new recipes on my friends. I could put out a great spread and it seemed so easy. Now… I just dread it. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply LA CONTESSA June 29, 2019 at 7:22 pm

    OH I’m at the grocery store every other DAY!I make myself like IT!I know everyone and enjoy picking out the fruit and veggies.
    What I do not enjoy much anymore is clothes shopping!!!!!!!!!!!
    Have no idea WHY just look at it all and say YUCK!
    But I can ALWAYS find SOMETHING TO BUY!!!!!!Be is for me or a GIFT or a family member!
    I DO NOT DO MUCH SHOPPING ON LINE!!!!!!
    SO WHY DO I HAVE TOO MUCH AND ALWAYS NEED MORE?
    NO IDEA but I’m slowly getting to that AGE of clearing OUT!
    WHICH is HARD FOR ME!
    XX

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 3:34 pm

      Elizabeth, I enjoyed shopping at Zara’s, Las Vegas, when you were on the phone with me! Maybe that’s the secret. You were telling me to look for your tunic and sequined camisole. That was fun! Thanks! xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Pat June 30, 2019 at 11:54 am

    Too funny. I’m not much for shopping either, but I am with you on always having that go-to staple almond butter in the house..

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace July 2, 2019 at 3:36 pm

      Pat, Almond butter works for everything, even emergencies! A few spoonfuls of almond butter in the afternoon, and I don’t need anything until dinner. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Becky July 3, 2019 at 6:58 am

    I enjoy shopping. There. I said it. I must admit I have not been ‘to the mall’ in over two years. Why? Amazon. Now that I have joined the perpetually too busy, when the shopping fever hits I head for the sofa. Is it a sad commentary on me that I don’t care if I touch it before I buy? Or is it the realization that now I don’t have to have inspection. The jury is still out on the causes. Now, to the sofa!!

    • Reply Brenda Coffee July 4, 2019 at 8:11 am

      Hi Becky! I love your comment. No. It’s not a sad commentary… Your priorities and ways of doing things have changed. You… we… have evolved and are instep with the times. And there’s never any shame in admitting you enjoy shopping. Here’s an admission from me: If I had places to wear clothes–and the money to buy them–I’d probably be shopping on my computer a lot more. Happy July 4th! xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Donna July 3, 2019 at 7:03 am

    In order: I love grocery shopping at Whole Foods, Central Market, then Trader Joe’s. I plan menus first, then go shop. I tolerate HEB which I’ve found is better around 7:30 a.m. and p.m. when everyone else is home. I love hardware stores and the only thing that would make them better would be if they sold some sturdy, basic clothes!
    Clothes shopping… meh. I’d love to look pulled together, simple, chic and unique. But, except for an exceptional dress or two, I have never mastered the art of shopping for clothes for myself, so now I only do it when necessary! I wish it weren’t so…
    XO

    • Reply Brenda Coffee July 4, 2019 at 8:24 am

      Donna, You’re funny! I think the words you’re looking for is “hard, difficult, time consuming and a pain in the butt.” At least those are the words I would use to describe why I don’t like shopping for clothes. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Anon July 3, 2019 at 11:35 am

    Well, we did actually have an emergency a few years back, so I was grateful to have food on hand that did not require the use of electricity or water. I had bottled water, but needed more. Walmart and other grocery stores sold out, so I had to think unconventional, like home improvement and office supply stores, even gas stations. Pricier, but they had it. Think dried fruit, crackers, nuts, canned tuna, etc. At least keep cans of snacking tuna with crackers on hand. When the electricity goes out, food in the fridge and freezer only lasts so long. Gas up the car.and take cash out of the ATM as soon as you can when criisis hits. We live in interesting times.

    • Reply Brenda Coffee July 4, 2019 at 8:27 am

      Anon, Brava! I can tell you are detailed and organized. In addition to the great suggestions you outlined I would add candles, flashlight batteries and dog food. Thanks for reading and leaving me a comment. I appreciate you! Brenda

  • Reply Juliet July 3, 2019 at 1:48 pm

    You are not alone! I hate shopping … particularly grocery shopping. If there’s an emergency today I’ll be up a creek … dependent on the kindness of strangers. Shopping for clothes also brings out the worst in me … I only go when I need something specific and then I’m on a mission – in and out. Lunching with girlfriends is great fun, shopping, hard pass.

    • Reply Brenda Coffee July 4, 2019 at 8:31 am

      Hi Juliet, You nailed it!! “Shopping for clothes brings out the worst in me.” Especially if I’m shopping for jeans. What is it about shopping for jeans that makes me depressed and turns me into a grouch who slinks home, vowing to go on a diet? I could try on 50 pairs of jeans and not find the right size. Let’s not even talk about shopping for bathing suits! Grrrr….. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply D.A. Wolf July 3, 2019 at 2:33 pm

    Oh, you do make me laugh! I actually don’t mind going grocery shopping – except at the moment because I am semi fasting. (Water water water, herbal tea, veggie soup, water water water. My eating habits have gone to a DEFCON 6 in the past several months. There’s veggie soup and yogurt and organic spinach in my fridge. That’s about it. I have to undo all the damage.)

    Actually, whenever I am trying to reset my eating so that I can get back to a healthy weight, going to the grocery store can be trying. (Hello? Fresh baked goods calling my name?) But otherwise, I don’t mind it. I love the colors and textures. That aside, I think it would be fun to go shopping with you. Even windowshopping or tchotchke shopping. Love all of the images images you soon here. But then, what’s not to love about Chanel?

    • Reply Brenda Coffee July 4, 2019 at 8:36 am

      DA, Done deal! Let’s meet to go shopping! First we can have lunch… perhaps a margarita… followed by looking at all the things in the window, then we can find a great place to sit and people watch and talk! That sounds like fun!! xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Sandra Sallin - Apart From My Art July 6, 2019 at 4:28 pm

    Almond butter you say? OK. which brand? Maybe I’ll try that for a change from the peanut butter.

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