Service of Panic Purchases

April 23rd, 2020

Categories: Anxiety, Panic, Retail

A friend offered to stay overnight in my apartment just in case so I bought an inflatable mattress before scheduled surgery early this year. Turned out I was fine, she went home that night so the mattress remains in its box and with the pandemic it will remain there for a good long time. I didn’t need to buy it after all.

When sheltering in place was new I bought a few bags of rigatoni, a big jar of tomato and apple sauce, two cans of corn and boxes of crackers just in case. I’ve not yet touched them as I’ve been able to get fresh potatoes, fettuccine alfredo, farmer’s market apples, frozen corn and peas and fresh bread. I also have a giant bottle of cranberry juice in case I can’t get out for fresh OJ and cider.

Some would define these as panic purchases because I wouldn’t normally buy them.

Have you bought things just in case that you may never use or might take a long time to? Are you continuing to do so or have you calmed down in this regard?

14 Responses to “Service of Panic Purchases”

  1. ASK Said:

    I recently was looking for a bottle of white vinegar, not for any kind of cleaning, but I do use it in certain salads, and I had about one teaspoon left. Apparently, there’s been a run on white vinegar in my local market, and I wound up buying a half-gallon of the stuff. I see a lot of macaroni salad in my future. Oh, and because I live in an apartment, the half-gallon bottle is being stored in the trunk of my car.

  2. Jeanne Byington Said:


    Thank goodness for your car!

    I use vinegar with baking soda to remove red residue from a wine glass that held red wine and at the house, where the water was mineral-high causing brown rings, it was great to clean toilets, bathtubs and sinks because I didn’t want harsh chemicals entering the well water system. I also used gallons and gallons of vinegar to kill weeds in the driveway–they sprouted up in the stones-as I as afraid of Roundup or other weed killer.

    I noticed a few packages of my brand of TP at CVS but didn’t touch them as I’m good with the few rolls I still have. Kept thinking of those in need…how un New York-y can I be?

  3. Helen Rabinovitz Said:

    This isn’t about me but my single friend Linda. Who currently has somewhere in her small, senior housing apartment….52 rolls of toilet paper and told me yesterday she was buying more. Unless she’s trained Nicky the cat to wipe his own bottom I think she’s pleasantly crazy. Actually she’s become a toilet paper hoarder. Is there a support group for that? On top of which I ordered a case of 12 rolls on line which a friend(Martha)and I agreed to split. Omg when I mentioned that to Linda she screamed “ you can’t do that, you need to keep it all!” Of course I gave Martha her half. No I haven’t purchased anything new and I don’t plan on it. Though I will admit boxes of anything made from chocolate call my name! Stay safe everyone!

  4. Jeanne Byington Said:


    The sad thing about Linda’s 52 rolls is that someone else who needs a few might not get any.

    I say the same to the selfish New Yorkers whom the NY Post reported went out to their weekend estates in the Hamptons at the beginning of sheltering at home–for which I don’t blame them. But they wiped out local food sources, some spending $12,000 or $8,000 and filling enormous freezers with the food. Such lack of thought to others–there was little for locals to buy– seems worse at a time like this.

  5. Jeanne Byington Said:

    Debbie on Facebook: I don’t eat a lot of pasta, but I bought extra. It doesn’t need refrigeration and can be the base of a meal with canned goods (vegetables) for a meal when food supplies run low. It is also something you could share with a neighbor if they were out of food or waiting on a delivery.

  6. Jeanne Byington Said:


    I have been wondering whether there will be a way to capture all the uneaten bags of rice and pasta or canned veggies, [which I dislike immensely], and given to food banks once the dust settles. I tend to doubt it for health reasons. How would food banks know if the items had been in a home with an infected person when so many will not have been tested and some not aware of the danger?

  7. Jackie Morel Said:

    Jackie wrote on Facebook: No plan when I run out of Lysol Wipes!

  8. Jeanne Byington Said:


    I admit to keeping an eye out for Clorox Wipes as my roll dwindles daily. I paid a fortune for it at a store that has since closed. I have two tiny bottles of Isopropyl rubbing alcohol 70 percent to make my own wipes and then there will be a question of looking for more paper towels!

  9. Helen Rabinovitz Said:

    I need to share this info! I was at CVS one day walking around with fingers crossed and happened To glance at the travel size items! Guess what….little packs of the wipes, 20 in a pack for $1.49 each. Yesterday they were buy 4 get a 5th one free. I keep one in my purse, one in the car and one on the coffee table. It’s the last place I would have thought to look but there they are. Oh I share with with my friend Owen. We actually share whatever we find with each other. It’s the perfect union!

  10. Jeanne Byington Said:


    Great tip! I used to look at the travel size items but gave it up. You hit pay-dirt! Good for you.

    Your friend Owen is a lucky person.

  11. Lucrezia Said:

    No. I don’t like feeling forced to spend money — so no panic/senseless shopping. I’m disorganized enough as it is!

  12. Jeanne Byington Said:


    There may be a fine line between panic buying and smart buying ahead to maintain independence. For example before my surgery I made sure I had enough food for a week– which was a good move. I couldn’t predict that while I felt better than I expected I had no energy and didn’t leave the apartment.

    That’s what I’ve done now–like Debbie above–in the event for some reason I can no longer go for food or should the food pipeline rupture. Logistics not being my strong suit I probably under estimated but so be it.

  13. Peggy Coppola Said:

    Peggy wrote on Facebook: My grocery store had a supply of Bounty today. Exciting day at the store! No wipes though.

  14. Jeanne Byington Said:


    Wow—my favorite! Too bad we’re not neighbors Peggy because I would trade you a 16 oz bottle of 70% rubbing alcohol for a roll and a half of Bounty! 😊

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