An ad promoting a trip to Glacier National Park

(Or “Why Non-Fundamentalists continue to fund Fundamentalism”)
By John Pierce

To take advantage of age-related discounts, a retired couple does their weekly grocery shopping every Wednesday morning. The schedule is not all that doesn’t change.

The list no longer needs to be written out. They know what they like and rarely alter their buggy contents except when peaches are in season.

One large bag of Joe’s Super-Cheap Potato Chips is the preferred accompaniment to lunchtime sandwiches and magically gets reduced to crumbs in the bottom of the bag late each Tuesday. Other staples such as a gallon of fat-free milk, two packages of Archway Oatmeal Cookies and a large jar of dry-roasted peanuts also seem to last exactly seven days.

After the groceries are brought home and the bags emptied, the couple enjoys a turkey on whole-wheat sandwich with lettuce and tomato — along with the potato chips.

But there is a big surprise. The potato chip bag is filled with Happy Pup dog biscuits instead of the familiar chips.

“How did that happen?” they exclaim.

After calling the grocery store and then the customer service number on the back of the bag, they discover that the manufacturer has switched the product names. From now on, the dog treats will be packaged and labeled as Joe’s Super-Cheap Potato Chips and vice versa.

The next Wednesday morning the husband retrieves a large bag of Joe’s Super-Cheap Potato Chips and tosses it in the buggy. His wife looks at him with surprise.

“Don’t you remember?” she asks. “Those aren’t the chips we like; there are dog treats in there now.”

“I know,” he replied. “But we have always bought them.”

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