Wednesday, May 23, 2012

I hate grocery shopping. Even when I'm home. I've managed many years ago to convince my wife that it really is better for all concerned if I just stay home and let her do the shopping. Actually, after a few years of me pouting in the produce isle as I watched her compare prices and rifle through her coupon book, that was enough to convince her to go it alone. 

If shopping at home is a hardship, shopping on the boat is pure hell. That's why I don't go. But the guys that do go have to jump through more hoops than a poodle at a dog show. It's truly crazy. And it's all the fault of the brilliant organization called Homeland Security. Because of them a their over the top safety measures it's now almost impossible get the milk back to the boat before it turns into curd.  
 A trip to the store from the boat, pre 9/11 used to go like this. You would go to the dock and look for the local cab phone number which was plastered all over the dock. Those cabbies were good at advertising. We would call the cab, he would drive into the refinery and down to the foot of the gangway, where we would then go to the store. The return trip was a drive through the refinery to the foot of the gangway where we would offload our still frozen ice cream and other goodies. Today, it's much different.
 The chances of a cab driving through a refinery to get to a dock are long gone. It was easier to pass through "check point Charlie" on the Berlin Wall during the Cold War than it is to get into a refinery today.
To go to the store today you inform the dock that you need to go to the store. They will send down one of their security men to drive you to a particular gate. Many times that gate will then call the "front gate" where a uniformed unsmiling security man will pick you up in his security truck. During the drive he will hint to you that you are really taking him away from his usual very important work. Upon reaching the front gate you may then call your cab.
 The return trip is more of the same. For some reason Homeland Security thinks a bag full of frozen rib eyes is a threat to our national security, because they do everything in their power to make sure the meat is thawed, the ice cream melted and the leafy greens wilted before allowing us back in.

These pictures were taken as the boys returned from shopping. They by passed one of the last check points and we made arrangements to pick them up on the beach and ferry the no longer frozen pizza to the boat via our rescue boat. About 5 trips back and forth were needed before the job was done.
I recently saw an interview that the former head of  Homeland Security gave to a national news station and he said, a large percentage of the delays at airport screening stations are unnecessary. I think if saw the foolishness that takes place on the marine industry side, he would be equally disenchanted with what they were doing.

I hate grocery shopping.


SueAnn Lommler said...

I don't mind the shopping. Seeing all the products lining the shelves..the fresh produce...a feast for the senses. But the coming back and unloading?! Forget about it!
I hate in small part...I know what you mean.
The good news...I don't have to deal with homeland least right now. Things could change.

Formerly known as Frau said...

Really unbelievable......I think I would hate shopping too! Have a wonderful weekend!

Marilyn said...

I don't blame you, I would hate it too if I had to go through all of that and then have melted ice cream.

Jerral Miles said...

The world got even more complicated on 9/11... It seems as if it may not change back to being a secure place again. On the other hand, maybe it never was.

bon bon said...

man, who'd have thunk it? i suppose it's like everything else. remember the good old days when no one carried guns? ha!

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