Home » Shoplifting Requires Intent, Right?

Shoplifting Requires Intent, Right?

It’s been a long time since I passed the Bar.

Or actually GONE to a bar.


You know where I am A. LOT. these days?


Yep.  That shiny new Target just down the street.  Its beautiful red bullseye beckons almost daily.

My Husband has the shameful receipts to prove it.

WHAT?  The kid needs formula. . .might as well hit up the dollar bins. . .and the moisturizer aisle because lawd knows this weather has left us all a cracked, scaly mess. . .

Where was I?  Right.  Formula.

And dry scaly mess. . .Yes.

His name is Teddy.  Teddy, our second son.

He’s a mess.  I was blaming winter weather but the last time we saw the Doc, she said it might be a milk allergy.  So she suggested we start some kinda’ fancy pants formula which is rather costly but is conveniently sold at the local Target.

I don’t know?  Maybe Teddy is ramping up his eating?  But this stuff doesn’t seem to go as far as the other formula we were using so I feel like I’m constantly needing to pick up more.

Hence, my need to visit Target with such regularity.  With two kids.  And a backpack.  And sippy cup and wubbies and a small snack and a bottle just in case things go off the rails. . .and my wallet and always with my pants on. . .


Now, I’ll say by and large, the kids are really good in public places like stores and restaurants.  But they’re still a horrible distraction.

There’s a lot of babbling and grabbing.  And I’m constantly thinking up new entertainment tactics:  Find Mommy all the number 3’s you can find!  Do you see something blue?   Where’s the letter A?  Let’s sing a song!  Do you want some damned Play Doh just to shut it for five more minutes?  

And ONE time a few months ago, Chris allowed Mac to ride in the big part of the cart. . .not the child seat.  This of course was so AWESOME, Mac will now ONLY ride in this part of any cart.  Grrrrr.  

Again, he’s well-behaved and he mostly remains seated so things could be a lot worse.  However, it leaves precious little room to put anything IN the cart because he’s in there manhandling and squashing every blessed thing.

Don’t even get me started on the fate of our pears and bananas last grocery run. . .

Anyway, even if you put the stuff in the section of the cart where he SHOULD be sitting, he’ll MOVE it.

Yes, I’ve tried reasoning.  I’ve tried bribes.  I’ve tried threats.  I’ve tried freezing those squashed to hell bananas for banana bread. . .

My work-around is to put things that could be extra enticing or valuable on the bottom rack of the cart – out of his sight and out of his reach. . .Which is exactly what I did with a $40 container of Teddy’s formula the last time we were in Target.

And then I grabbed a few canvas storage bins and some other junk that definitely wasn’t on the list.

At the checkout, Mac was going on and on (and on) about using the electronic key pad to swipe the card because, once again, THANKS TO HIS FATHER, Mac likes to swipe the card and “sign” for everything.  Double Grrrrr…  

So we made it to the car.  And home.  And I looked at the receipt.

Hmmmm. . .that was really cheap.  Why was this so cheap with those storage containers and that formula?  Did she not ring up something?  






Oh dear.  I’m going to have to call Target and admit that I shoplifted something but not exactly shoplifted because I lacked the requisite intent as evidenced by my stupidly leaving it on a cart in the parking lot.


“Um Hi!  This is. . .um. .  .my name is Deni Miller and I was distracted and I did something stupid.”


“Well, I was shopping there with my crazy kids, and I put a container of formula under the cart and I didn’t pay for it and I walked out with it and – can you believe this?  I FORGOT all about it. . .heh, heh, heh. . .”




“Well I forgot all about it. . .so um I think there’s probably a cart in your parking lot with a container of formula under it right now.  And oh, I’m terribly sorry.  I’m home now.  . .YES!  Mommy is making a phone call.  Thank you so much for being patient while Mommy makes a phone call. . .Well I’m home now, ahhh. . .ummm. . .”


“So that’s it?  Do you need me to come back?”

“No.  It’s okay.  I’ll send someone out to the parking lot.”

“So I’m not going to be banned from the store?”


“Ok.  I’ll see you tomorrow then, because, you know, I need formula.”


Whew.  That went well.  

And the next day, just as a precautionary measure, I went to Target wearing sunglasses and a hat.








4 Responses to “Shoplifting Requires Intent, Right?”

  1. Daisy Broomfield says:

    Kid-related shoplifting! Here we always get asked if we need help packing, and I automatically say “no, I’m fine”. Except one time I had both the boys behaving like complete monsters in the trolley so I said, “that would be really great.” Halfway through the shopping the girl on the checkout must have forgotten to scan stuff and just lifted it across straight into the bags because when she rang it up it was suspiciously cheap. I wasn’t going to spend time checking the receipt with the kids screaming like banshees so I just left, and when I got home I discovered I’d got about £30 worth of stuff free. Did I go back? NOPE.

    • admin says:

      I think all’s fair when the kids are off the hook. I NEVER check the receipt in the store. I’m always racing to get out fast as I can before something disasterous happens!

  2. I still own an accidentally shoplifted elephant ornament. The then 18 month old had grabbed it and I didn’t realize till putting him in the car and I was too lazy to go back. There, that’s my secret confession of stealing a $2 ornament.
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