So this one time, I was invited to a potluck, and I brought a vegetable tray from Target. You know, the kind you’ve seen at every single party since the dawn of time: carrots, celery, broccoli, cauliflower and a trough of ranch in the middle.
As a potluck choice, this was lazy, uncreative and easy to acquire on a Friday afternoon. I felt bad about my cop out for about 15 seconds, then strolled boldly into Target, grabbed some veggie goodness and paid $11 for the simplicity of prepackaged produce.
The weird thing was that the particular Target I was in smelled really bad. Super stinky. The smell was everywhere–following me–like a farting ghost, frankly. To the extent that I actually checked the bottom of my shoes for a misplaced dog turd, and texted a friend, “This Target smells like poop.” I shrugged it off though, thinking they just needed to apply some of the 800 types of air-freshener-aroma-diffusing-plug-in things they sell. That’d be a solid start.
So my friend joins me. And the two of us journeyed north to said potluck. This dear friend, of half a lifetime, declined to comment upon entering my car that IT TOO smelled like poop. Maybe she thought it was me? Dear lord. At any rate, we arrived and presented the pre-made tray with gusto.
It wasn’t until ALL the guests had arrived (who were mostly senior citizens) with their dishes (which all were homemade) that the host (my husband) brought out my tray.
And then. The smell.
Oh goodness the smell that enveloped the premises.
It took all of two minutes for us to realize that it was coming from the vegetable tray. At which point my husband carried it outside like one might carry a dead cat they found in the living room. We had no time to investigate what exact aspect of the tray was causing the odor because of the urgent need to dispose of its hazardous contents.
Me? Only slightly shamed and humiliated. I mean, you try to do the nice thing, and subtly offer fresh produce to strangers, only to crash and burn and disgust an entire event. We had to open the doors to keep people from becoming ill.
I returned to Target that evening, with only my receipt, and had to explain why I deserved a refund for a veggie tray that smelled like farts. The 20-year-old at the counter is undeniably still retelling this story to his buddies, while I’m just trying to recover from the stench.
Oh, and if you want to know why I”m suddenly so comfortable writing about farts, see # 6 on this list – it is gloriously entertaining.