By Hillel Aron
By Joseph Tsidulko
By Patrick Range McDonald
By David Futch
By Hillel Aron
By Dennis Romero
By Jill Stewart
By Dennis Romero
Did I mention she looks like Elita?
I arrive at Whole Foods on a Wednesday, shortly before noon, and immediately set up camp near the expensive cheeses. A disappointing half-hour later, a realization sinks in: Filipina mistresses don’t shop at Whole Foods — at least not the one in Glendale. Either that, or they don’t like cheese. And I can’t seem to find a lumpia aisle.
As far as the Armenian ladies go, most are toting a minimum of two kids. And I’m dubious about the ones who are there alone. Paranoia grips me. “These women probably have husbands,” I think to myself — “large, hairy husbands.” This is all too close to home.
A new location is in order — and perhaps a new strategy. Westside-bound, I head to Gelson’s in Pacific Palisades to employ the Eric “Otter” Stratton maneuver from Animal House. This entails storming the produce section, grabbing the largest cucumber you can find, spotting the woman of your choice, and politely telling her, “Mine’s bigger” when she grabs her own cucumber. When she gasps and begins fishing in her purse for mace, you point to your vegetable and tell her, “My cucumber, I mean, it’s bigger.”
She smiles and laughs off your joke, but her subliminal curiosity has been stoked. Visions of the Eiffel Tower, the Empire State Building and the Shiva Linga dance through her suddenly active mind. She’s gotta know, is it really bigger?
Hey, it worked on Dean Wormer’s wife.
I step through the automatic double doors and am pleasantly surprised by what I see. Several attractive older blondes in sundresses roam the aisles — not a child in sight.
My initial excitement, however, soon gives way to a cavemanlike state of Darwinian competition. I’m not the only one checking out the scene. To my right, a stable of teenage bag boys are scanning the room. The registers are busy, but not a single one of them is loading carts. They wait in silence, their beady red eyes ceaselessly probing.
I grab a cart and immediately head toward the cucumbers. When I get there, to my dismay, a stock boy is lording over the section, individually placing a supply of about 8,000 cucumbers on the shelves, one by one by one. I hover behind him for about 15 minutes, but though he’s stocked enough cucumbers to feed all of Calcutta, he doesn’t appear to be going anywhere.
“Can I help you?” he finally asks me with a wry smile — one that tells me all I need to know. “I’ve seen Animal House,” it says. “Dean Wormer’s wife is mine.”
Humbled, I sidle off to try the fancy-cheese aisle, but again, another stock boy with a post-Armageddon-sized supply of food and a smug grin has set up shop.
Meanwhile, the Chef Boyardee display is practically bare. These grocery kids are smart little bastards. This is going to be harder than I thought.
I roam the grocery floor like a madman, scanning the carts of my potential sugar mommas. Suddenly, everywhere I look, all I see are wedding rings and diapers. Frustration grows.
Finally, 45 minutes and a still-empty cart later, I see her in the checkout line — tight jeans, wavy brown hair, black tank top. She looks like Sheryl Crow and carries herself with a similar, confident air. No wedding ring. No diapers. American Express Platinum card. Cucumber and fancy cheese in the cart!
The perfect woman.
I grab a can of mango juice and head to the line next to hers. If all works out, we’ll check out at about the same time and meet at the door on the way out. I try in vain to make eye contact.
As both of us edge to the front of our respective lines, suddenly, to my horror, a blond bag boy — who hasn’t moved since I entered the store — detaches himself from the wall and makes his way over to “Sheryl’s” rapidly filling cart.
“Can I help you with that, ma’am?” he asks, grinning like a head-injury victim. She agrees, and after helping the cashier pack the remaining bags, he strides out the door, Sheryl at his side, heading toward her car — a silver convertible.
That little fucker.
I grab my mango juice and head back to my car, alone and dejected, visions of Paris dissolving into Gelson’s scorched parking lot. Cougar hunting, I realize, is thankless, competitive labor. I’d be better off coal mining.
I hop in my car and turn on the radio to drown out my failure. The weather report comes on. “Hot and sunny, highs in the upper 80s.” My thoughts drift back to our fair-island weather maiden Elita Loresca.
Elita — if you’re out there — you, me, Paris. How ’bout it? Andrew says the weather is fascinating this time of year.