“Homeland Security Reigns at the Hobby Lobby”

As Americans in today’s environment, our senses are heightened to the possibility that evil may be lurking in the most mundane of places. And I am happy to report that Hobby Lobby is in “High Alert” status and ready to do battle should there be even the inference of danger. This especially applies when you are a shopper as they certainly don’t want to be accused of being lax and let down their guard, leaving themselves open to a “postal” crafting attack of sorts–not on their watch! Let me explain…

My mother the parrot (known for her ability to ‘ape’ the GPS commands from my TomTom) and I left home (leaving the GPS at home…not needed with the maternal unit riding shotgun) for a special bonding day of shopping and guilt trips—a symbiotic existence and unavoidable combo. And this brings us to the reigning Homeland Security detail at the local Hobby Lobby.

My quest for this particular day was to price custom framing for a particular piece of artwork that I was completing in my sweatshop of décor at the familial abode. I never really felt the chill of fear until I approached the “Custom Framing Department”. You know that feeling when the little hairs on the back of your neck stand up right before something bad happens? Well, I had a forest sprouting from the nape region worthy of my Hello Kitty pink chainsaw…but I digress.

Let me set the scene…to the left is an island/counter for custom framing orders and to my right (my previous stint as room monitor in Sister Pierre’s second grade class prepared me for such awareness) was a large archway marked “Framing”. Somewhat redundant, but I made the lightingfast decision to approach said archway, as there was a man in that room busily pounding a frame into submission like some sardonic Santa’s elf in a Tim Burton film. And then IT HAPPENED! I CROSSED THE INVISIBLE LINE OF DEMARKATION!

What played out next was reminiscent of some throw back to that drug movie “Midnight Express”…glue guns were (practically) drawn and I could almost feel the laser light bouncin’ off my powdered but still void of wrinkles forehead. “Herbie” (don’t know his name but I’m sure that this elf would prefer being a dentist than tinkering with wood) raised his hand as if launching into “Stop In the Name Of Love”—but in a much more authoritative manner than even Ms. Ross herself—and then, Herbie bellows at me “Customers are NOT allowed past the archway”! Fearing that this might go into my crafting PERMANENT RECORD, I instinctively took one step back (shielding my mother, of course) into THE SAFE ZONE. Obviously, we all needed to bring it down a few notches. I had one thought “Diffuse the situation, but maintain eye contact” (and was fully prepared to run frantically for the door in a zig zag pattern…I know this skill…I’m from Chicago). For some strange reason, I was quite confident that my cable company COX had something to do with this inconvenience as they HAVE been watching me through my cable box since I sent that strongly worded letter to their headquarters in Atlanta and was marked as a “dissident”. Now I can’t go freakin’ ANYWHERE as I am a marked woman.

Me thinks that Herbie was drunk with power in his position as “head framer”, and perhaps he had every reason to feel smug. I sort of slipped into a dream sequence of sorts where I fell back on what I knew and did not hesitate to proclaim…loudly “The pot isn’t mine…I’m holdin’ for her!” and narked out my mother in the process…but it was only a dream…anyhoo…

So Herbie now informs me that we can only actually speak to him at the counter/island…so properly chastised, I move 7 feet to the left and elfman assumes the position of superiority behind the counter. He was finally in the “safe zone” although I’m sure that Hobby Lobby deducts Herbie’s hazard pay for this. For some reason, my mother the parrot was breathing deeply and rasped out the words “Behave and act nice!” and I felt her spittle as it hit the forest on my nape region. But as Cox Cable will attest to, I am an army of ONE so mother had good reason to be afraid…besides; you can only get the lunch specials for a short while so I was keenly aware of the time sensitivity of my next actions…and statement.

I simply said “Sorry, is this the FRAMING DEPARTMENT? Crap, I thought it said GAMING DEPARTMENT…which is perfectly fine now since I’m off parole and allowed to take part in battle re- enactments again…gosh dude, you were SOOOO convincing…thanks for the rush!”.

And somewhere at Cox Cable there is a meeting being held and notes being taken…and I’m pretty confident that I’m now appearing on the “No Fly List” at my local Hobby Lobby.


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