My mom steals nuts. She really does. Well, sort of, anyway… She doesn’t actually steal in the traditional sense…
Every time we go to this specific grocery store, I somehow forget about this fact. That is, of course, I forget about it only until my mother walks up to me and offers me some nuts. “You want some nuts?” she’ll ask, and proffer me a handful of mixed nuts. The first time she did it, I didn’t understand. Where had she gotten a handful of nuts? Did she bring them in with her, and I just hadn’t noticed? But it quickly hit me.
“Did you get those from the …?”
“Mmhmm,” she cut me off, and then offered me the nuts again.
Naturally, I accepted. They were a bit old that first time, but that was it. Today, they were actually quite good. I really enjoyed them.
Perhaps you are wondering how it is my mother gets these nuts in a way that I do not feel any guilt or obligation in eating them. Well, you could call it a sort of recycling, in a way. You know how some stores have the pull-down dispensers for nuts, and sometimes even for cereals and other grains and such in the dried bulk foods section? And you know how there are almost always those same dried bulk foods spilled around on the little shelf below all of the dispensers? Do you see where this is going?
Hopefully, you aren’t entirely repulsed by this idea. It isn’t as though there is anything else on the shelves – they are cleaned constantly, as is required for something in such proximity to unpackaged foods.
Anyway, this particular store has a sort of tricky system for making those shelves look nice all of the time. Instead of just having it be a shelf to catch the falling dried foods, it is a sort of grate on top of the shelf, and the grate allows the foods to fall through it and onto the shelf, while leaving the appearance of a totally clean and clear shelf, free from food spillages.
So, as I went to get another bite of nuts after we finished what my mom brought over to me today, I had to enlist the help of my mother, because I did not yet know the last piece of information I just shared here. However, she happily showed me her secret means of stealing nuts destined for the trash, and I got my other desired bite of fresh nuts, and I felt good about helping prevent that extra bit of unnecessary waste.
Next time you’re at a grocer with some nut dispensers, perhaps you’ll consider helping prevent waste, eh? ;P Or you could just imagine my mother showing up and saying, “Want some nuts?”