She’ll always love me. She’ll always love me because she picks me first.
I see her come in from the wind and cold, her hair clumped in an odd arrangement of hairspray. Ear phones jammed as far inside her ears as possible. She is oblivious to everything except hunger.
She walks inside, scanning the aisles of the market with her life’s soundtrack following every step. Grapefruit? Too sour. Organic Sugar? Too pretentious. It’s a Bittersweet Symphony playing on repeat.
Nobody used to pick me. I stayed in the back of the freezer, hoping a fat Polish woman might see me and exclaim, “Supper!”
Day after day the market manager moved me to different areas of the store. First I was next to the pizzas. Surely someone would pick me if I was associated with something fast and cheap. I stared across the aisle, focusing intensely on the Leanfast bars. A woman in a bikini with dyed blond hair and a spray tan devoured the chocolate seductively. I was definitely in the wrong position.
Next, the market manager moved me to the ice cream section. I tried to be cool and aloof, like one of those anorexic French women who thought hunger itself was a sign of shameless need. No one was biting.
At last, they stuck me with the vegetables where all good food goes to die.
But then she came.
I could tell she was of the boring variety by the absence of color in her wardrobe and the way she chatted with primarily women over sixty-five.
“Don’t bother with those batteries,” she pointed to a shelf full of Duracell’s while an older woman scratched her head. “They may be on sale, but they’re never as good as the Energizers.”
After moving on from the batteries, she scanned the fruits. Too tart.
She scanned the pizza. Too greasy.
She scanned the vegetables and shook her head with obvious disappointment.
And then she saw me.
“Pierogi!” She said with glee. “I’ve been looking for you everywhere!”