There’s no getting around it, I have free sample anxiety. My social skills are so underdeveloped that a one inch square cube of ring bologna on a toothpick causes me more thought and calculation than I care to admit.

A trip to the local warehouse discounter is a virtual minefield of awkward desires, sideway glances, and missed culinary opportunities. You see, I feel obliged to actually consider the product being offered by the hair-netted sample purveyor.

To be frank, I hate playing the game. The clumsy reach for the toothpick, the combination fake ‘mmmm it’s tasty’ noise and head-bob, the forced inquiry of “What aisle did you say this is in again?”

It’s all a facade. The truth is, I just want to get my greedy digits on a free snack. Lady with the sanitary gloves, I have no interest in purchasing your twenty pound bag of Mrs. Fields Cookies. I am a sampling fraud!

One also has to consider what the other shoppers will think. “I think I saw tubby go back for a second helping of freshly-cored pineapple. We better head over to the 2 ounce apple juice cups before he gets there!”

Please do not judge me for my petty desires. The microwaveable mini breakfast burritos would not taste so sweet if they were tainted with even a tinge of disdain.