Courier Life’s

How I prepared for the storm, or Oreos are delicious

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I had three missions this past weekend, buying a generator, finding a winter jacket, and picking up supplies to prepare fo Sandy.

Let’s just say I was three for three in the strike-out department. By early Saturday morning finding a generator was harder than Li-Lo staying out of trouble and out of the tabloids for an entire day.

Suffice it to say there was no generator pleasantly humming in my backyard when the power predictably went out.

Next was the mission to find a coat. Did I say generators were difficult to find? Not as hard as a three-quarters, light-weight winter jacket with a hood and a zipper.

I first tried the big three, visiting Macy’s, Sears, and JC Penney. There were only a handful of jackets on display where racks upon racks once stood Yes, there was a short supply of short jackets, long coats, capes, peacoats, double-breasted, button-down, nylyon windbreakers, and a few fake furs, but none that met my criteria.

In Sears the coat section was reduced to one side wall and a small center section. In Macy’s the coats were strewn in between the clothes. In Penney’s, the coats were huddled in a corner hiding. Why? Isn’t winter almost upon us?

So I tried the smaller shops. Busted as well.

If not finding the exact style weren’t enough agita, finding the right size was worse. When the chest fit, the sleeves were too long, when the sleeves were just right, the chest was too tight. One plaid, double-breasted peacoat I tried on must have been made for a stick puppet because the sleeves were so tight that once I had it on, I couldn’t move my arms to button it. I had to call the sales clerk to pry the sleeves off of me.

I left the mall disgusted, disgruntled, and defeated.

On to the supermarket. Pathmark was the closest so I headed my car into the parking lot and began the search for a spot. Let me tell you: finding a spot had nothing on the generator and the jacket. I truly believe that the entire population of Staten Island was in that parking lot. I went up and down the aisles a few times and eventually found a spot. Then I began searching for a wagon. Spying one several rows away I sprinted through the cars and nabbed the handle mere seconds before another shopper could claim it. The elderly ninja shopper that I beat out had a few sharp words for me, but I didn’t care, wagons were harder than generators, coats, and parking spots.

Undaunted, into the market I went. No water, no bananas, empty shelves and very long lines.

But I managed to pick up the essentials — two bags of Halloween candy, ice-cream, and a box of Oreos.

Not for Nuthin’™, but if you have to be in the dark without a generator, or a three-quarter winter jacket with a zipper and a hood, the next best thing is an Oreo and a bag of Halloween candy.

Joanna DelBuono writes about national issues — and shopping — every Wednesday on

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