Today’s word of the day: inordinate
\in-OR-dun-ut\ adjective: exceeding reasonable limits : immoderate

Yesterday was a good day. I was fairly productive at the office and towards the end of the day, I had compiled several lists of things that I needed at the grocery store and the drug store. One of my favorite Duane Reade locations (on Park) is close to my office, so I made the decision to tackle the drug store list right after leaving the office.

I entered the store and headed for the body wash. In the isle, I saw a man facing the shelves with a gaping, shabby plastic bag. Before I knew it, his hands were grabbing various lotions, body washes, and bubbles off of the shelves, stuffing them into the crinkled plastic bag. After he finished filling the bag to his liking, he adjusted the bag on his arm and walked placidly out of the isle. I stared at this gentleman with unsophisticated wonderment (for what seemed like an inordinate amount of time) as I watched him bypass the counter and swiftly exit the store. I continued staring at the empty door.

“Did he just walk out of the store.” Slowly, coming to I realized that another woman had just witnessed the same event. I stared at her for a bit and then said something, which was most likely dumb along the lines of “Uh, yeah, uh he did.” She was a bit more proactive than I was, and hurried off to inform the store personal of the crime.

Why didn’t I try to stop him? I could have flung myself in front of the door, shouted or screamed petty theft, tackled or at least tripped him to slow his progress. Instead my Samaritan instincts were succeeded by the rubbernecking kind. Whether or not the store or its personal seemed affected by this $20 deficit, I couldn’t tell.

I continued my shopping in somewhat of a hurried daze and when evaluating the pros and cons of adding a new kind of hair product to my list, I decided that the best way to do so was to stick my finger in it. So I did and immeadiately thought – well why did I do that? Now I have to buy it, and at that moment, I more or less felt like everyone in the store had saw me do it. The store even seemed to darken. Needless to say, I went home with the hair product.

I don’t necessarily have grand and abstract things to say about theft, crime, or other amoral acts that occur every second of every day. What I was most struck by was the fluidity of the act, the lack of alarm and suspicion, and the casual shrug that it took to wash it from one’s memory.