When ErinGoBrawl and I were in college, we used to make weekly pilgrimages to the promised land. And, by the promised land I mean Wegman’s, obviously.
During those delightful visits, we learned many important life lessons, including that a few fresh vegetables can turn a packet of ramen into a gourmet dining experience and that wearing excessive eye make-up does not make it more likely that the cashier will sell you beer without an ID.
But, the most important lesson that we learned, which we repeatedly had to yell at each other when tempted by the bright lights of the dairy section, was this:
DO NOT BUY BULK CHEESE.
It never tastes as good as you think it will, you will never eat it all, and it always ends in digestive distress. Always. Just ask ErinGoBrawl. She knows.
I have fastidiously applied the Just Say No Bulk Cheese rule ever since, extrapolating the hypothesis to reach all bulk items.
I have never succumbed to the Sirens that are CostCo, Sam’s Club, and BJ’s (who named that company? I mean, really?! How did that make it out of market research?), refusing to be seduced by their sweet discount songs into shipwrecking my already too small home on giant jars of pretzels, mountains of toilet paper, and industrial sized vats of vile mayonnaise.
I know better.
I know that buying in bulk always ends badly.
But, recently, that magic life-saving mantra escaped me just when I needed it most.
As you know, Country Boy and I have been remodeling our house for approximately 4.5 eons. We are FINALLY on the last phase of the outside overhaul, which is the landscaping. Because Country Boy is a landscape architect, our yard revamp is not going to just be a quick sod, shrub, and mulch job. Oh no. He has a much greater plan that I am absolutely in love with.
But, with great plans comes great time commitments.
As Country Boy began lining up nurseries from which to obtain his plethora of plants to transform our yard into the world’s smallest botanical garden, he began casually dropping little gems like “We’ll need to rent a UHaul to pick-up all of the plants,” “Most of these nurseries are over an hour’s drive away,” and “This could take months.”
Things that I do not want to spend one, let alone many Saturdays doing? Riding in a UHaul for hours on end while shopping for plants.
But, I really wanted my amazing yard to be finished.
And then, one of the nurseries told Country Boy that if he bought all 250 plants at once, they would give him a substantial discount and deliver those plants directly to our door.
No UHaul?! No epic journeys to nurseries?! No belabored plant shopping with a picky professional?! A discount?!
SIGN ME UP.
I immediately and effusively praised this as the greatest idea ever, and I insisted that Country Boy take the nursery up on its offer.
I was so overjoyed at saving hours of shopping and getting a discount that I overlooked one glaring detail of this plan that became painfully obvious on delivery morning.
We had just bought bulk plants.
WHAT HAD I DONE?? I KNOW BETTER!
As with everything that is purchased in bulk, operation landscaping has ended badly.
Because you know what happens when 250 plants arrive on your doorstep? You have to plant them. You have to plant them ASAP to avoid them being stolen and to avoid having to hand-water each individual pot to prevent a bulk-plant dust bowl.
But, it is physically impossible for two people to get 250 plants perfectly aligned and in the ground in one day, which means that we had to start doing things like this at 10:00 pm on a Monday night after a 10-hour work day:
It’s been well over a week of midnight gardening sessions, and we still have not managed to get our foliage army safely packed in the soil. As soon as I arrive home every night, I reluctantly trudge myself out to the yard to commence planting and watering the never-ending battalions of plants. I’m like Khaleesi, except for that my soldiers don’t respond to my commands.
By the time we (hopefully) finish planting this weekend, we will have spent countless long weeknights and several 12+ hour weekend days furiously and frantically flinging dirt around our yard all while coddling our over-stressed and unhappy little green friends.
And, in the course of this insanity, Country Boy and I are both exhausted and so sore that we can barely walk normally, requiring bulk-plant-discount-negating financial and emotional investments in Aleve, massages, and general disgruntledness.
So, to recap, buying in bulk has resulted in no euphoria, yet has produced a host of physically, emotionally, and socially destructive side effects.
Remember kids, Just Say No to Bulk.