Tuesday, October 11, 2005


My husband and I always shop at Trader Joe's before going to Safeway. Sometimes TJ's is cheaper, sometimes it's not. Plus you can get interesting food items there.

Yesterday I wandered over to the cracker section because I've been having a hunkering for something crunchy that wasn't a chip. I picked out two items that looked tasty, and right when I turned around to head back to the shopping cart, a lady came out of nowhere. Talking really loudly. To me.

"Something, something, something! Salmon!!!" she said to me (the "something" is what I didn't catch because I didn't expect some lady to come out of nowhere while talking really loudly to me.

To backtrack a bit, I was wearing a blue Pedro the Lion t-shirt. It was really warm when I got home from work, so I had to get into something less constricting. By wearing my t-shirt and Levis and boots, I kinda looked like an employee of TJ's because they also wear t-shirt (mind you, with Hawaiian flowers on it and not a lion).

I was a bit startled by this woman because she was awfully loud and very excited about the two packages of salmon in her hands. I was going to ask her to repeat her salmon statement, but I started thinking she thought I was a TJ's employee. So I hesitated a bit while she rambled on about her salmon (I wasn't catching anything she was saying except the word salmon).

I looked at her and said, "You don't think I work here, do you?"

I heard someone laughing to my right. I looked. It was my husband (who often gets mistaken for working in stores for reasons I won't get in to at this moment).


Ah... Okay. Not sure what a salmon person looks like, but okay.

"Oh, okay, I was just making sure," I told her. I didn't want her to think I was an employee and that I was rude or something because I was going to have to deflate her salmon bubble. "I don't eat salmon."

Her face dropped. I'm serious here, she looked so disappointed in me, and I began to feel terrible. I guess I could have lied and gave her an answer to her question based on what I know about salmon: I don't really like it.

"Oh, oh...I thought you would know about salmon," she said. Man, was I a big let down.

"Nope, not a salmon person, sorry."

The whole time my husband was standing off to the side and snickering at me.

I walked over to him, and said something about my t-shirt and the confusion while the lady attacked another shopper about her salmon. I overheard their conversation, and the other lady knew her salmon, I tell you. She had salmon-smarts.

When we got out of earshot, I asked my husband, "Why would she think I'm a salmon person?"

He said it's because I'm white. White people love the salmon (he's not white).

"Oh! I've been stereotyped!" I exclaimed.

"Hey, it happens to me every day," he responded.

And what was funny about this whole situation was that I was going to buy halibut. I know nothing about fish, but I know I like halibut. So I felt really weird looking at the frozen fish at TJ's because I thought that lady was going to find me perusing the fish and accuse me of lying.

No comments: