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Close up shop on a wedding


The store sells all the mundane things in life, which end up being discarded, recycled or discarded. Items that are nothing but everything: lint rollers, deodorant, greeting cards, magazines, school supplies, vitamins.

This time I had a headache or a sore throat, or that other time my husband’s allergies flared up after we rode a taxi through Central Park while the pink double-blossom cherry trees were in bloom, he head out the window like a beaming golden retriever, but a person. My person.

My husband and I separated in 2016. We had no children, no property, or a lot of money. Our marriage was glorious until it wasn’t. In the end, we didn’t even share meals. But one thing that has lingered is our Duane Reade Rewards shared account, the kind that gives you discounts and points. It’s one of those artifacts so minor, so inconsequential, that I never think about us sharing it until seconds before I pay. Then, boom, beep, and the receipts are emailed to me.

He now shops at his Duane Reade near his home, not at our Duane Reade, because there is no more “our” (except for our shared rewards card). I see on his itemized receipts that he bought three rolls of Christmas tissues to wrap presents (not for me), teeth whiteners (to smile at someone else), cream to tame hair (for his unruly locks), and he was charged the five-10 cent cart fee (because obviously he forgot his).

My therapist would say I should close the account, but I stopped seeing her a few years ago. My ex-husband and I are still in touch, and when I reminded him of our shared account, he said he knows I like Duane Reade and gave me permission to use his points (and even gave permission to write about it all).

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