Finding spots and things

People keep asking me how I like living in NYC. It’s only just feeling like maybe we do live here. I mean, we spent a week driving. A week after we got here, I went off to Readercon for three days feeling very much like I’d driven straight from Portland to Burlington with a brief stopover in NYC.

But, there are some things in the apartment that have come together in ways that really please me. For instance, we had all of these wooden wine crates that we brought the china out in. What to do with them? Or how about the baskets that only really get used when I have company? Behold! They are in the kitchen.

Shelving in process

Yesterday, Rob and I headed out to the Union Square Farmers’ market to pick up produce and bread. Trader Joe’s has opened up a branch just a couple of blocks from the farmers’ market so we picked up some staples. Interestingly, they don’t have the same stock as the one in Portland, so we had to skip some favorites.

In the evening, I went to the closest organic store here and discovered that yes, they do have spices in bulk. Hurrah! I’d also taken my granola jar so I could stock up. I explained what I wanted to do.

“You have to weigh it first,” he said.

Pointing to the weight written on the jar, I said, “I already have the tare, but can double-check.” Why not, I figured, after all I could be trying to pull one over on him. So I put it on the scale, which read 2.00, just like I had written on the jar. So I get a couple of scoops of the granola I want to try, look at the other items and then come back to check out.

He plunked the jar on the scale and it read 2.67. “That’ll be $10.63.”

“Um…” I looked at the half-empty jar. “Really? I think you’ve got the weight of the jar in there too.”

“Huh. How much did the jar weigh?” He scowled at me. “Did you weigh this?”

I was one of two customers in the store. The other was a tall, cadaverous man with a beard who arrived after I weighed it. I smiled and nodded anyway. “Yes. It was two point oh.” Again, I point to the weight written helpfully on the jar.

“Grab a bag and put the granola in that. So I can weigh it.”


“A bag. Get a bag. From there. Put the granola in it so I can get the right weight. I don’t know how much the jar weighs.”

“But I don’t want a bag. If I’d wanted a plastic bag, I wouldn’t have lugged a two-pound jar with me to the store. We know the jar weighs two pounds, so that means I have .67 pounds of granola.”

The cadaverous man chimed in. “You can put the tare in the scale to get the right price. I used to do this all the time at a food co-op out west.”

I smiled gratefully at him. “Thanks. That’s what we did back in Portland. I’ve just moved.”

He nodded as if he knew exactly what I was going through. The guy behind the counter punched some buttons and finally said, “$2.67 cents.”

We all agreed that sounded right, so I gave the counter guy the money and said, “So what do I need to do next time I come in? Because I’m going to bring my own containers again.”

As if he was my new best friend he said, “I’ll figure it out. Don’t you worry. Next time, I’ll know how to use the scale.”

Oh good.

Honestly though, if I’d found another place with spices in bulk or if this weren’t the closest organic store…

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1 thought on “Finding spots and things”

  1. Let us know if he remembers how to put the tare in the scale the next time you take your own container.

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