So F***ing Gross

Sunday, August 12, 2007

So I was at Costco picking up some staple items like butter and razors and whatnot. Now, I've learned to keep a keen eye whenever I go there. It's like trudging through the marshes of Vietnam; every single sound or rustle may be the first warning of an attack. Or liken it to walking in the middle of a herd of water buffalo, you have to be ready to run and keep an open ear out. Anything can start a stampede.

Likewise, the crowds are dangerously restless, each individual armed with a cart loaded up with so much bulk pantyhose and soda water that the thing is weighted like a tank. They drive recklessly and without any restriction. Every man for himself.

They also dangerously circle those free sample stands. I try to avoid them like the plague. Nothing is worse than being right in front of the sample stand when the little old lady announces the Otis Spunkmeyer cookies are done. If you're lucky enough to escape being trampled like a stray cigarette butt on the street, you're a salmon fighting your way upstream out of the horde. I like to picture I am escaping zombies when that happens to make it less traumatic. (Actually, come to think of it, that's exactly what I am doing.)

But back to the story. As I was escaping the french bread pizza samples, I noticed the little old lady throwing her head back and suddenly...


All over the samples.

But what was really gross?

When she announced the pizza samples were ready. No one cared.



  1. Yuck. I've seen those little stampedes at Costco, for samples of packaged foods I would never eat (the salt content of much of that stuff is off the charts) -- but it's something about "free" -- people can't help themselves.

  2. Seriously. I will not eat another sample at Costco again unless I have seen its preparation. Makes ya wonder about all the food prep grossness that goes on where we can't see!

  3. I saw a fight over the samples once at CostCo. A lady with her 5 kids cleaned out the breaded chicken samples and the guy in line behind them was ticked and started yelling at the kids. Then someone else called him a jerk and "choas enveloped the isle."

  4. I tried a few samples years ago but I just can't do it anymore. Hygiene is really important to me but not everyone takes it so seriously.

  5. Yuk, that is just sickening. People can be so gross.

  6. Hi Handsome,

    You could be writing about the local Walmart in the [un-named] town nearby. I take my life in my hands when I [absolutely have to - ugh] shop there. It's a nightmare and not for the faint of heart. ;)

    Great post.

    Hope you're having a fab summer!



  7. The only thing I buy at Costco is their bagels. $4 for 12, and I usually eat half of one for breakfast each morning, so that's like a month's worth of breakfast for $4, you can't beat that! Everything else is just outrageous, though. Seriously, who needs 5 gallons of vegetable oil (besides the Daring Bakers, of course)? I totally hear ya on the samples though, I just avoid those dark corners at all costs.

  8. so sick. It sounds like the Barneys sample sale here. Only with less anorexia.

  9. I'm with you deborah dowd! I do the same thing - in fact, I TELL them that "unless I see you make it - I'm not eatin' it!" For some reason, I've found Sam's Club to be a bit more hygenically sound than Costco...or at least MY Sam's Club.

    Hey Garrett - we're trying out Queen Sheba tomorrow night for my man's birthday! It'll be our first time - any menu suggestions? I read your article and am totally trying the beef and pepper concoction you mentioned, but - anything else you liked?

  10. Kate - Get the lentil dish and the collard green dish. THey are both fantastic. Lemony, spicy, and just so warm and homey! You will love Sheba! With reviewing restauraunts for the blog and for the magazine, it's one of the few places I frequent on a regular basis.

  11. I avoid the samples like crazy, some of the people working are not sanitary and do not follow the guidelines, plus I don't like to fight with people over a freakin' sample...know what I mean?

  12. I NEVER eat samples at stores..ugh. Don't ever use those plastic creamers that sit in bowls on tables..I once saw these kids put them all in their mouth and then back in the bowl. IIIIICCCCKKKK. Same with the sugar packets! I carry my own.

  13. Ugh. Ugh. Ugh.

    Costco - oversize store, filled with oversize carts and oversize patrons.

    'Nuf said.

  14. I used to say, "no thank you, I have braces, I can't have that", now my braces are off and I guess I'll just have to tell the truth! I don't want that! I am facinated with the people paying for food at the Sam's Club snackbar. I'm sure a sneeze is the least of the problems in there. At least there is some motivation for the freebie!!!

  15. Haha! Great post! I am so subscribing to your feed.


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