Monday, December 3, 2012

Quid pro quo Joe's (a guest post by Mike)

Hey gang!  For those of you who have been reading for a while, you may remember that a few months ago, I asked my husband, Mike, to start writing on my blog on Mondays.  You can read his first and only post here.  Unfortunately, we got busy.  Life happened, right?  Anyway, Mike is going to try his best to post on Mondays again, and I'm going to call his posts-- you guessed it-- Mondays with Mike.  So, if the men in your life are looking for another male Catholic blogger to read, forward them Mike's posts.  I'm going to try to get him on Twitter, so he can start interacting with #Cathmen.

So, heeeeere's Mike---

In order to thank Kate for putting up with my career over the last few months, I scheduled a hair and facial appointment for her today.  It took me the last two months to work it into the budget and save for it, but today was her day.  After she returned, we talked about how her vehicle needed service, and we needed a few things from the store.  So now it was my turn to have a little “me time."  Here I am, driving a Yukon XL, with a Guinness hat on, listening to lithium (XM34), and going to get the oil changed.  The shop was less than 5 minutes from our house, and they provide great service, so I was in and out.

Onward to Trader Joe’s:  I love that store, but I always feel like I’m surrounded by a bunch of people to put this delicately…let’s just say, I don’t feel they have the same “values” as our family does.  Did I mention that we have a “CHOOSE LIFE” license plate frame, a John Paul II one decade rosary hanging from the mirror, and a magnet for the Catholic school our daughter goes to on the back of the Yukon?  No? 

So here I am, listening to Sublime, driving my gas guzzler (although it is 75 people miles per gallon currently; and I can give you the math later if you want), wearing my Guinness hat, empty car seats behind me, looking like a Catholic billboard and going into the hippieland parking lot.  My only saving grace was some nerdy glasses which Kate likes and is reminiscent of something you would find in the Obama campaign office. 
Yep, those are the ones...

And then it happened, the fear set in that I was being watched.  Remember, we live in California, which in case you didn’t know isn’t exactly a pro-life state.  That kid collecting the shopping carts certainly couldn’t be pro-life.  After all, he was a teenager.  That old guy driving the van behind me might be, but he’s probably lived in Cali too long and has been corrupted.  I knew I was sunk and would surely get some looks.  Of course I didn’t care, said a Hail Mary, realized I had judged, and went to purchase the few items we needed.

As always, the employees were extremely helpful (the pesto was under the hummus, and I couldn’t see it), and I made my way to the checkout.  The checkout girl couldn’t have been any more than 21 years old.  She asked very politely if the family had any plans for the weekend.  I said we were probably going to the Christmas tree lighting.  Upon saying "Christmas" I felt a wave hit in my stomach and was ready to be martyred for being so insensitive. 

Instead, she asked, "How many children do you have?"
"We have 3," I replied.

"Really, wow, what are their ages?"
"5, 2, and 1.  They’re pretty young, but we love it," I said, trying my best to be confident. 

"Well, you know you need to have a fourth, right?" 
 I’m sure I looked like this:
She continued, “Yeah, each one needs a buddy for amusement parks, to look after each other, and you need even teams.” 

You could have knocked me over with a feather.  I felt so good afterwards.  When you think the worst of people, and make silly judgments, God has a great way of smacking you straight. 
"Judge not dummy!  I made them too."


  1. LOL The final quote and picture is SO fitting.

  2. I like this post - and I like Mike's tone & style. As a rep for Cathmen - I urge you to join us on Twitter ( and/or Facebook. (

  3. This crunchy, politically-moderate northern Californian (who is *gasp* not Catholic and a friend of your wife's on Cathsorority and Twitter) highly recommends Trader Joe's because they're really that awesome. Our local one (in the town north of us) has crewmates who will have long one-sided conversations with my autistic (and thus non-verbal) son. When they help me out with my groceries, one of them will make race car noises as he steers the cart with my son. If they took WIC, I wouldn't shop anywhere else.

    1. I'm terribly sorry if I was unclear Jen. I was pointing out my own flaws as I had passed judgement on people I didn't even know. That's why I put that caption after the final pic. For the record, I think Trader Joe's is the bomb! Have a Merry Christmas.

    2. I picked up on your message of passing judgment. I was just affirming the awesomeness of Trader Joe's.

  4. I love this! "You need to have a fourth" - definitely not the ending I saw coming. :)