For those of you who haven’t yet visited the new Food Lion store in Wake Forest, which, based on the throngs of shoppers we had to make our way through today, there can’t be many, I wanted to give you a quick rundown of some of the things you can expect. in this new modern location.
One of the first things I found unique was how all the sidewalks lead to the sides of the building, you know, so you can enter the lobby through doors that are perpendicular to the front of the building (for those of you from Iron- Duff, that’s a fancy way of saying there’s a porch that juts out from the front of the house and instead of having steps going up the middle, the steps are on either side.) The strange thing was, when we got to the side of the lobby, there were no doors there. So what you need to do next is get back on the road, avoid getting hit, and then walk back to the front of the lobby where the doors are (porch for those of you Iron-Duff). I must say that having an awning over that front area (covered porch for those of you from Iron-Duff) would have come in handy during today’s monsoon.
Now, if you’re thinking all this work just to get in might not be worth it, fear not, once inside you’ll find all the groceries you came for, not to mention the chance to wander through the fresh produce fridge. This room is properly humidified and properly cooled to keep the freshest vegetables in town. As you exit the produce cave, you’ll find yourself wandering into their new state-of-the-art Deli. Folks, they have sandwiches, pizza, pasta, sandwiches, sushi, and even whole fried chickens. You can imagine my excitement seeing all the deli offerings, especially after having to spend all that time in the produce cave. Produce cooler, are you kidding? Hey Food Lion, what if the next time you get together to design a store and a young hipster walks into the room and says he needs a produce cooler right where the beer cave used to be, he’ll be a little grown-up? ‘ny put it back on the night shift storage shelves. Trust me, a few months of night shift coupled with the disruption of her delicate circadian rhythm and she’ll forget her organic vegan ways, but I digress.
So back to the deli, where today is Super Bowl Sunday and I’m about to buy myself a couple dozen Wing Dings. I’m thinking maybe I’ll get a dozen normal Wing Dings and a dozen Spicy Wing Dings, right? So I’m looking up and down the hot shelf and I don’t see any so I asked this nice young man in the deli section where I could find the Wing Dings. I assumed he worked at the deli because he was wearing a fresh-out-of-the-bag blue Food Lion polo shirt with a shiny new badge. The badge even had his name on it, or at least I think it was his name, hard to tell when they use old school Dymo labelers. I say all of this to help explain what happened next, because what I heard was a statement that I assumed was simply coming from the mouth of a new kid, one who doesn’t yet understand the retail business, or maybe just doesn’t. I’m still not up to speed on all things Food Lion, because what he says is “we don’t do Wing Dings anymore”! At that very moment I gave that young man my full attention, looked him straight in the eye and demanded that he clarify his statement! Before the poor boy could even utter three good splutters of a “bbb-but” stutter, another boy decided that he might need to intervene. Also donning one of those new blue polo shirts with the accompanying embossed Dymo name tag, although he denoted him as the “Deli Manager”, he proceeded to confirm that the youngsters had previously declared heartbreaking news by saying: “yes, true, we’re not “I’m not going to do those Wing Dings anymore. We’ve got this new hot bar right here where you can get ’em any way you want,” as she points to a rolling buffet that’s just the right height to allow the kids to play. After a quick look around the bar, I realized what What I meant by “any way you want them” is that you can have them any way you want them as long as the way you want them is superheated to the point where the meat is pulled on the bone and then soak them in a sticky sweet barbecue or orange sauce – folks, that’s not the way I want you!
If you’re wondering what I did next, I’ll tell you. I did the only thing a self-respecting man can do, I grabbed one of those to-go boxes and proceeded to pick out a dozen of those fake chicken wings covered in diabeetus sauce reheated on the bone. I didn’t do this because I wanted to worry about you, but because Beth had grabbed my arm and told me to stop whining, to leave the poor deli boy alone, whether or not to eat some of those damn chicken wings. Either way she doesn’t mind, and we go so we can finish shopping. With my wings on the buggy, I finished pouting as I pushed our cart through the land of lost promises, while being careful not to trip over the little old ladies blocking the aisles as they waited for the store manager to tell them yes or no. , the grand opening sale price for tuna would be honored next week.
Now, for those of you who are worried about me and worry about how I could survive without Wing Dings, rest easy, because eventually I’ll find a gas station that will fix your wings just the way I like them. However, I would like to ask that if you have a spare moment, please pray for the poor cashier who checked us in, I am sure she would appreciate it. Turns out I wasn’t the only one who was disappointed with our shopping experience and wondered where the world was headed. By the time we got home, someone else was crying too. Now while Beth may not share my affinity for Wing Dings, she did seem to have a bit of annoyance when it came to bagging her groceries, along with a few choice words for the poor cashier who did the bagging. She seemed genuinely surprised that the cashier had placed our toothpaste in the same bag with all of our cleaning supplies, which included a bottle of liquid bleach. I guess it takes a lot more than bagging bleach and toothpaste to wow me these days, especially when the bagger is from the same generation that eats Tide Pods. I can see the new ad campaign now;
“Looking for a mouthwash that provides whiter teeth and a brighter smile? Try Clorox. (Also kills germs that cause bad breath.)”
Beth also took issue with the fact that the cashier bagged our raw sausage and fresh mixed greens together. It’s crazy things like this that can often lead to deadly cross contamination. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying the young lady didn’t provide us with any food safety precautions, I mean at least she had the decency to place the two items in one of them there “blue bags” so we would know what was inside it would have to be refrigerated once we got home. Let’s face it, at some point the consumer has to accept a minimum (limited amount for those of you at Iron-Duff) of responsibility for their own food safety. We have all heard those stories about families getting sick from their own food, and how it could have been easily prevented if they had simply followed some sanitation and hygiene practices when working in the kitchen. Take my sausage and mixed greens problem, for example. By simply selecting the proper utensils, this young cashier packing the faux pas poses no health risk to me or my family. I simply start my prep by pulling out a cast iron skillet from under the stove. Next, I set one of the large stove eyes to medium-high (6-7). To prevent sticking, I recommend letting the pan heat up for 2-3 minutes, long enough that you can feel the heat coming out of the pan when you run your hand over it, but not so long that it dries out. . burn your fingers when you touch it. Once properly preheated, toss the sausage into the skillet and cook until browned on both sides but still greasy in the middle. Browning the outside of the sausage is the most important step, as it ensures that the pan is hot enough to burn off any germs the sausage might have picked up from touching the nasty vegetables.
If you get a chance to visit the new Food Lion, I recommend you wait a few days. If all goes well, it’ll stop raining, they’ll add some awnings, and if my call to action goes well, they’ll have Wing Dings on the shelf before March Madness starts.