Entering Costco feels like you are entering a special club for even more special members. However it is the only club you will find in which the "bouncer" is in a wheelchair. Still, pulling out that plastic and flashing it to the worker makes me feel like I am in a place where I am loved.
Once into the swanky establishment, you will find that you are surrounded by a multitude of various objects for sale. It's like they pull all the good crap to the front so that it is the first thing you see. Once you have passed the giant bins full of winter coats, lycra body suits, gas fire places and Disneyland discount tickets, you are ready for a free sample or two.
Of course, before you get to the samples you must first pass through the mounds of clothing piled 40 slacks high. There is ALWAYS a worker, eying the fallen stacks, ready to refold and replace, swearing under their breath. "Stupid kids, I just stacked those overalls six times and with one toddler finger my teetering tower falls!"
Which reminds me, I can never work at the Gap due to my inane folding skills. I can't refold anything to save my life. At Costco, I dig and excavate those towers until I finally find my size. Of course, you are unable to try the clothing on at Costco, so I must just hold it up to my body and eye it. But the worst part is refolding those things! The pants at Costco are harder to fold than a state map. I can just never remember how the stupid creases went and I become stymied by their complex crinkles. I finally just give up and throw it in a heap on top of the pile. I can usually feel the hot breath of the Costco folder bearing down on me as her anger boils over. I can hear her thoughts, "Stupid men, can't fold worth a crap! Makes me do all the folding for them."
Without a doubt the highlight of the Costco trip is the sample day. I love the samples, all except the lady giving away the super fiber crackers that no one ever wants. I feel bad for that old lady. "Would you like a fiber bar?" she always asks as I walk by. I give her the obligatory "no thanks" nod, knowing that "fiber bar" really means "rock in bottom of my stomach bar". I feel bad for her though. She is rejected more in one day than a BYU coed is in a lifetime.
The popular old ladies are the ones that have the good stuff. Cheese, pasta, chocolate bars, nut mixes. These are senior citizens that I am infatuated with. These beautiful wrinkled ladies must feel like the prom queen again with all the people lined up to see them. They usually can't even keep their little paper cups filled!
What makes me really laugh is when there is an actual line for a sample that is not quite done. I can just imagine what these people are thinking, "I don't really have anywhere to go on a Saturday afternoon, so I think that I will just stand here like a dope and twiddle my thumbs while I wait for my half inch square of miniature cheesecake to come out of that tiny microwave."
It is always a good idea to take your kids with you to sample day. You can usually get two or three extra tidbits of goodness that way. My spiel to the ancient hands handling the cups of pretzels usually goes something like this:
"Hmm, these look good. Now what is this?"
"It's called pretzels sir."
"Yes, hmm, I think I have heard of those. Well, I guess I will be giving this a try."
[Looking at Calder] "Calder, you like Pretzels? Yes? Okay."
"I guess I better get him one too."
Of course, I wait until I am around the corner to give Calder his one pretzel and then down the rest like the pig that I am.
I love how they cut all the samples with scissors. Whoever thought of this is a pure genius. Nothing slices through bread like a pair of double blades. They actually probably use scissors so the insane ladies don't murder the more insane people waiting for their bite size portion of cracker covered with artichoke dip. Those ladies always already seem slightly on edge. Who knows what damage they could do with a knife!
What a better way to finish a perfect day than with a $1.50 hotdog and drink with 3,000 other Costco lovers? Costco, you're the king of cool and you shall always have a special place in my heart.