Out of stock

I am beginning to suspect that Giant Eagle is using my Advantage Card to track my purchases and systematically eliminate all the things I buy on a regular basis.

First, it was just little things, things that could be chalked up to coincidence. Maybe they just stopped making Sweet BBQ Sun Chips? I mean, I guess it makes sense that I might have been the only person buying chicken jerky? Even though it’s delicious and way better for you than regular jerky, but whatever, I digress, it does sound sort of gross when you think about it.

But more and more, I find that the items that I needed to survive everyday life were disappearing off shelves. Oscar Mayer turkey bacon– gone. Stonyfield Farms blueberry yogurt– never to be seen again. My grocery store now sells no less than sixty varieties of nut butter, including powdered, cocoa pretzel, and bacon (which is probably pretty good, TBH), but you will never again be able to purchase prepared chicken or shelled pistachio nuts. (And yes, I know I can just man up and shell my own pistachios and prepare my own chicken, but THIS IS AMERICA AND I SHOULDN’T HAVE TO.)

At first, I tried to adjust. Fine, no more Oscar Mayer turkey bacon? I will eat this equally acceptable Jennie-O turkey bacon. I suppose this coconut creamer is an adequate replacement for my Almond Joy creamer. (It’s not.) But then Giant Eagle fought back, and eliminated those things, too.

The worst is when they take away something that my children like, because it’s really not possible to explain to a five-year-old that she’s never again going to taste the delectable goodness of FarmRich pepperoni pizza bites (and God help you if you attempt to replace them with Tostino’s Pizza Rolls, because she will KNOW, and her wrath will be fierce). Occasionally, I’ll find my old food comrades in another store, and when I do, I return home with a cart full of it, hoarding it like the apocalypse is at hand. I will most likely die almost immediately at the hands of zombies, but by God, I will do so with a jar of Mid’s meat sauce clutched against my chest.

I wonder if I could use this to my advantage. If I buy nothing but mayonnaise for the next few months, will they take all the mayonnaise off the shelves? Can I buy out the stock of the olive bar and get that shut down, too? I don’t really know what I’d do with gallons of mayonnaise and olives– probably barf uncontrollably until they’re removed from the premises– but there must be some benefit to this misfortune. And an antipasto-free shopping experience just might be worth it.