I believe today is, in fact, the other “T” day, but if it were Tuesday, it would be senior discount day at Kroger. Five percent off the bill. But you have to ask.
Ah . . . there’s the catch . . . remembering to ask . . .
About a month ago I learned by word-of-mouth about the discount. It is not advertised, but those “in the know” can save a few bucks. I have not typically been one to have a designated grocery day. When I run out of coffee, I know it’s time to grocery-shop. However, these days, every little bit helps, so I decided to discipline myself to shop on Tuesday.
The first Tuesday of July I was ready. I didn’t know the age of eligibility for the discount, but I had just turned sixty, so I was pretty sure I could qualify. (At the movie theater, it’s sixty-two, so there was a bit of uncertainty.) Anyway, I had in hand my list, carefully constructed around the weekly ad paper; and I clutched my collected coupons while I envisioned myself as one of those super-shoppers with two bulging shopping carts who ends up getting money back at the check-out.
I carefully gathered my purchases, paid the cashier, tucked the receipt away in my purse, loaded the groceries into the trunk, and headed home. As I approached my driveway, I remembered. “Oh no! I forgot to ask about the discount!” I berated myself and bemoaned the fact that I had been distracted by watching my coupons being subtracted from my total. “Oh well,” I told myself, “better luck next time.”
Next time, second Tuesday in July . . . I have to confess . . . same scenario, except this time I had been distracted by the conversation between the cashier and the bag-boy. The subject was John Denver. “Do you know how he died?” the friendly cashier asked me. “Plane crash?” I asked. “Yes!” he said. Score! I was so proud of myself for being able to recall that bit of information.
On the way home, after letting another $2.50 go down the drain, I was replaying the scene in my mind: I remembered that and forgot to ask for the discount? That’s how they can afford to do this. No one remembers! I decided not to brood about it and try again the following week.
Two days ago, third Tuesday in July, I was determined to remember to ask this time. Good omen: I finally remembered that I needed to return the package of lasagna noodles that were broken into unusable pieces when I had opened them.
So, after standing in line at Customer Service twice to handle the noodle issue (the second time with ice cream in my cart), I was finally at the check-out. I handed the nice lady my Kroger card and my coupons, and I remembered. First I asked how old one must be. Fifty-five. No problem. (Side-note: she did not card me — a bit disappointing yet not unexpected)
However, to my great dismay, she then informed me, “If your card is not activated, you will have to go to Customer Service.”
Having already been to Customer Service twice, and in view of the fact that half my items were already on the counter, not to mention the growing line behind me, I let it go. I consoled myself with the knowledge that I was making progress. I had at least remembered to ask.
The whole episode was capped off when my $1.50 coupon for frozen vegetables would not scan. The nice lady said, “These just have not been going through properly today.” She turned as if to seek help, but I told her, “That’s okay. I’ll just use it another time.”
“Well, it will have to be tomorrow,” she said, pointing out the expiration date.
“Just forget it,” I said as I watched $1.50 being thrown into the trash can behind the counter. I knew I would not be coming back “tomorrow” — it wasn’t a Tuesday.
James said, “You have not because you ask not.” Well, that had been true for me on all those other Tuesdays, but what about today? I would just have to ask in the right place next time, and all would be well.
Jesus said, “Ask . . . seek . . . knock . . .”
I recall having read somewhere that “ask” in this context means “keep on asking.” Well, that certainly applies to me. I have assured my frugal self that I will persevere. I will just keep on asking until I receive.
There’s always next Tuesday . . . Customer Service, here I come!