Jones Soda and Laminate FlooringMay 23, 2007
Life is a banquet, remember? This evening was quite a surprise and quickly became one of those times that life feels so very good. Under these circumstances, how could it be any different?
First off, it’s payday! I text my son, Sterling, and ask if he wants to ride along to pick up my paycheck. He agrees to ride along, knowing that I’m going to feed him, but I get to pretend that he likes to spend time with me, even if I didn’t take him out to eat. We pick up the check, deposit it, and do some shopping. He helps me figure out the square footage in my dining room, the amount of laminate flooring I’ll need, and we do a cost analysis at the local home improvement mega-store. This, however, is not where I’ll purchase the flooring, eventhough the cheapest available is a mere .87 cents per sq. ft.
Having recorded our calculations in our heads, we drive about a mile down the road to Gabriel’s also known as “Gabe’s.” I saw some nice K Swiss laminate flooring there on Monday on sale for $19.99 for 25.8 sq. ft. I figured that it was a good bargain. When we returned this evening, it had been reduced to $10.00 for the 25.8 sq. ft. package. I make my selection, the Calavados Oak, load the shopping cart and head for the checkout. With the underlayment, installation kit, and a twix bar (for Sterling) my new dining room floor will have cost me around $80.
Feeling pumped about the floor, we make our way to the car, but at the door of the store we encounter this evening’s entertainment. A young lady holding a shoe, a pump with a very high heel, calls out in a brassy voice to ask if she could use one of our cell phones as hers was locked in her car and she needed to call her boyfriend to get a ride. We oblige, Sterling hands her his phone, and when the boyfriend answers, she begins yelling at him and cussing him out. “You know I have to go see my F***ing Parole Officer tonight!”
We load the flooring into the car and drive across the road to Big Lots, where I inform Sterling that they have his favorite soda, Jones Soda on sale. I suggest that we buy some for his graduation party. We decide that two cases would be not only sufficient, but that his friends would be impressed that we bought the “good stuff” for them to celebrate high school graduation. We make sure that we have a good variety of flavors and head for the cashier. Shopping victory #2!
The car now seems to lumber slowly down the road with our load of flooring and soda. I offer dinner, to which Sterling agrees and suggests Texas Roadhouse. I’m a bit surprised because this is not a place I’ve heard him ask for before. I question the cost. Life may be a banquet, but I’m not about to pay a huge tab for dining here. Sterling assures me that his meal will be less than $5 as he only orders the fries with cheese. He’s right, even with beverages and the cost of my entree, mmm sirloin kebobs, we drop less than $20 plus the tip.
I’d love to end this with a lesson learned, some moral to the story, or a surprise ending. I can’t. There’s nothing. Well, nothing other than a great evening, spent with a great kid, preparing for things that will make our lives richer in the coming weeks. But then, I can’t overlook the events of this evening without reflecting on how those events have already enriched our lives. It’s a banquet, folks! Dig in!