Around here they joke that everyone must eat French toast during snowstorms because whenever one is forecast the stores fill up with people buying bread, milk, and eggs. I don't eat bread, I eat very few eggs, and my soymilk supply is good for a week or more. But 8" of snow is predicted for tonight and tomorrow, and I feel a compelling urge to go to the supermarket.
I have a bad cold and don't feel very well, and still I'm contemplating getting in my car and driving a minimum of ten miles to the nearest store to get--what? I'm trying to figure out what I could possibly need. As always, it comes down to pet food. I have full bags of dog and cat food, but they're open, and that sets off alarm bells. Silly alarm bells, really, because these are big bags.
Why do I feel the need to procure great quantities of pet food whenever a snowflake threatens? Is it a leftover contagious emotion from the long-ago days when my husband filled the basement with vacuum-packed buckets of grains and vitamins, preparing for the total anarchy predicted by various experts? Or does this go even further back, to the canned food that lined the shelves of our kitchen cupboards in my Cold War childhood? My dad, far more organized than I, had a system of rotation, so that we'd eat the oldest can first. In my house today, I have an unfortunate lack of systems. The concept of rotation is rather foreign to me. If the dog food has an expiration date I'm not aware of it. But I know one thing: I want to make sure we have lots and lots.