Every Thursday morning, I volunteer for CareConnect and grocery shop for the homebound and the elderly in Boulder County.


Please stop clapping for me. It’s embarrassing.

I do this for three reasons.
1. I get to be in a grocery store.
2. These people are fun.
3. I get a free donut and unlimited Starbucks coffee.

And believe me, you haven’t lived until you’ve shouted “There is no frozen chicken teriyaki” into your phone.

Here’s what happens.

You walk in and you see this. This is why they give you the donuts and coffee.

This is what I do. I go through the list of everything that’s supposed to be in these carts, and then I run like a woman possessed through the aisles of Safeway finding or replacing or verifying its existence if it happens to be missing from these carts or is wrong or is non-existent. I’ve earned my fair share of nicknames around here. Some of them are good.

Then I give them to Dee. This is Dee. Her husband is a chef. I’m buttering her up.

This is Diana. Diana is my life. She reads my mind. And she can also read packages, which comes in very handy.

This is the milk guy. He loves Thursdays. On Thursdays, he stocks dairy. We take it. He stocks it. We take it. Then he “runs out”. But I’m smart. I know where he keeps the extra milk.

Hi Tory.

This is Alex. Alex bags the groceries. Alex has very specific rules. You do not use his Sharpies. You do not move his carts. Which only means that of course I will borrow his Sharpies and rearrange his carts. Alex thinks I’m a scamp.

This is Carolyn. She’s the boss and she can take any old Sharpie she wants.

Sorry I freak you out, Mr. Produce Man.

Well, helllooooo there.

This is deli girl. She also loves Thursdays.

This is how she looks at me. Every Thursday. Every single Thursday.

And this, my friends, is Bill.

Bill delivers groceries every week to the homebound and elderly of Boulder County.

Carolyn introduced me to Bill.

And here’s how it went from there.

Bill: Guess how old I am.

Me: Really?

Bill: Yes. Guess how old I am.

Me: Well, I’d say around 70 or so.

Bill: That’s what everybody says. I’m 95.

Me: WHAT? No stinkin way, man!

Bill: Yup. I’m 95 years old.

Me: Dude! You look amazing!

Bill: I know. Want me to tell you the secret?

Me: Uh, yeah?!! By the way, what is your accent? Where are you from?

Bill: New Orleans.

Me: New Orleans.

Bill: No. You’re saying it wrong. Naaahhhllllinnns.

Me: It’s all one word?

Bill: Yup. Anyway, there’s a secret to being like me at 95. See, I drink 2 boilermakers every night. You know what a boilermaker is?

Me: Nope. I have no earthly idea.

Bill: Well, it’s a beer and then I chase it with a shot of bourbon. Sometimes I have 2, sometimes I have 3 a night.

Me: Dude. You’re a stud.

Bill: And my doctor says I have no medical problems at all.

Me: No kidding? Nothing?

Bill: Nope. He said whatever you’re doing, just keep doing it.

Me: Better do what the doctor says. And you have not one medical issue at all?

Bill: Nope. Well, there is this one thing…

And this is where I will have to cut you off and spare you the gories.

This is what a boilermaker looks like.

You’re welcome.

Oh, and Bill is the real reason I volunteer here.