My Aunt Mary and Crack and the Grocery Store

Some stories are for education, some are for your enjoyment. This is to make you laugh

(P.S. the title is entirely misleading)

Story time brought to you by Aiden’s “I thought more people would be here”

My Dad had an Aunt he lived with for a long time and was essentially a mother to him. He called her Aunt Mary so naturally she became my Aunt Mary but was a grandmother to me. Her birthday was this past weekend so I figured I would write a funny story about her. So I often would accompany my Dad when we took my Aunt grocery shopping. We would go to the Stop N Shop in Hamden and while my Dad waited in line at the deli I would take Aunt Mary to get the rest of her groceries. She was in her 80s and needed help pushing around the cart and grabbing certain items. Her first stop would always be the fruits and vegetables section.

Stop 1) My Aunt Mary and I would go to the grape section. Every single time she would rip a grape off of the vine and eat it. Then she would make a typical old Italian lady dislike face and move to the next grape. Another bite, another distaste. We would do this a few more times until she found some grapes she liked. See I was used to this behavior so this summer when I went to the grocery store I did the same thing. Ya, uhhh…apparently it isn’t cool to try out the food before you buy it. I got a ton of dirty looks. But my Aunt Mary would do this for other foods too. I remember her once taking a bite from a pepper and putting it back because she didn’t like it. I believe she would be what the kids nowadays call the prototypical “Hardo.”

Stop 2) The cookie isle. Like any Italian grandma, my Aunt did nothing but spoil us. My Aunt Mary did not have much money but every time I went to the grocery store she would make sure to buy me some Chip Ahoys Cookies. And her and my father would have the same fight every single time. Dad {sometimes in Italian, sometimes in English} “Aunt Mary, il bambino non ha bisogno di biscotti, abbiamo di cibo cattivo a casa! mettere i biscotti indietro.” For my English speaking friends, “Aunt Mary, the kid does not need any cookies, we have bad food at home! Put the cookies back.” My Aunt Mary would say, “Jer, Ho intenzione di acquistare Matt quello che voglio, è solo i biscotti, non sarò qui ancora a lungo, a Dio piacendo, mi permetta di comprare questo per il ragazzo.” Translation “I am going to buy Matt what I want, it is only cookies, I will not be here much longer, god willing, let me buy this for the boy.” Typical Italian argument. Aunt Mary always won. But here is what’s funny. My Aunt Mary learned English in America and it was still broken. So she called cookies crackers. But Italians abbreviate everything so she would call cookies crack. In the grocery store it would not be uncommon to hear my aunt yelling at my dad to buy me some crack. And everyone would laugh and stare at us.

I can still hear my Aunt yelling at my Dad saying “Jerry come on! Let me buy the boy some crack!”

Also with the crack theme. Every Sunday my Aunt Mary would come over for dinner. We would have pasta with homemade sauce and meatballs and pork then salad then espresso. My dogs would always stay right next to Aunt Mary because they knew she would give them some bread or meatball. For some reason, my Aunt Mary would called any snack she gave the dogs “crack” as well. So she would yell at my Dad again “Jerry, I give the dogs some crack why do they always come back!? I give them crack and they should go away now!”

According to my Aunt Mary, my dogs and I were “crack” addicts

Love you Aunt Mary


See you all at the pub crawl,                                                                                                                                    PHA