The other day after my run, I decided to crank it on over to The Kroger’s to pick up some stuff, and lo and behold, right there in the midst of the Frozen Novelties aisle was a gaggle of nuns. Shopping! For groceries! They were all decked out in their white robes and habits, just standing there looking gravely at cartons of Moose Tracks and Chunky Monkey. One was holding a list and biting a pencil worriedly as though the ice cream selection process was just too much to endure.
Naturally, I had to sneak a peek at their carts to see what nuns eat. A lot of the food was white. I don’t know if this was an intentional effort aimed at matching their din dins to their wardrobes, but there it was: Bunny bread, angel (heh heh heh) food cake, eggs, milk, cauliflower, toilet paper (I don’t think they eat this), spaghetti, marshmallows, and a hefty package of haddock. I’m pretty sure Sister Consternation tossed a couple gallons ‘o vanilla ice cream into her cart after some wrenching deliberation.
Just when I was thinking, “Oh, you poor bland monochromatic nuns and your wearying comestibles,” the Mother Superior one came wheeling around the corner. In her cart was a jumbo Family Size barrel of Slim Jims.
No one expects nuns to eat Slim Jims.
At this point, I think it was becoming obvious that I was checking out the nun carts, but I couldn’t avert my eyes. It was like I was drugged. Upon further scrutiny, I also saw that Mother Superior had picked up a case of Dr. K ( The Kroger’s lame answer to Dr. Pepper) and two (two!) boxes of Lucky Charms. I’m telling you right now that I have a hard time featuring the sisters all giddy around the breakfast table watching the milk turn pink while eating a Magically Delicious cereal.
As the nuns krogered on out of sight (sorrow), I glimpsed a package of Crest White Strips. Granted this is a white item, but, again, no one expects a nun to whiten her teeth. No one.
Later on, I was telling Cheryl about my exciting observations, and she mentioned that she had seen the nuns at WalMart one time (I…I.. can’t even begin to imagine the overwhelming possibilities of strangeness in this scenario), but all she recalled was that they had piled themselves and their groceries into a VW Bug and took off. A VW BUG!? I nearly collapsed.
The basis for my personal view of what nuns should be like stems from 4 years of Catholic High School in the 70s in South Carolina. (Wheeeee!). In particular, I present to you Sister Eugenius. She was about 4 foot 9 and taught typing and was like 300 years old. She pretty much always had dandruff on her habit and carried around a ruler to snap at those with poor typing form, whatever that is. Eugenius liked to yell things like, “Quieten down!” and “You in the back! Eyes forward!” She had a slight moustache.
Anyhoo, one morning she had to march on down the hall to get some more White-Out and typewriter ribbon. Connected to our classroom was a large storage closet that was empty at the time. Since there were only 12 of us in the class, it just seemed like the right thing to do to all hide in the closet and then jump out and scare the living bejeezus out of Eugenius when she came back to an empty room. She was so startled that she stepped into a trash can. Then she sort of lost her balance and her habit slid halfway off her pinpointy head, revealing some serious habit hair.
I don’t know how many of you have ever enjoyed a week of 2-hour detentions under the eyes of a moustached nun, but I don’t recommend it.
I suppose this is why the concept of any kind of frivolity in connection to nuns is terribly fascinating to me. As a child the TV show “The Flying Nun” seemed plausible and not particularly strange. Why shouldn’t a happy and attractive young nun be able to use her weirdo hat to fly around town? Then came Nun Reality in the 9th grade.
And, so, this is all just to say that the sisters who whiten their teeth and slam Dr. Ks and Slim Jims have restored my faith in groovy nuns.