As authorities worked to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus this week, businesses and schools across the country closed or transitioned to remote work—and some inevitable panic, cabin fever, and joking-to-cope set it. And while we’ve made it our mission to impart as much factual and helpful information and advice as possible (ICYMI, here’s what food you should stock up on and here are all the ways you can assist your community), we also want to provide you some moments of levity and passing distraction.
So we turned to you on Instagram and asked what your weirdest panic purchase has been. (FYI: We’re against panic-buying in bulk, and experts caution against buying more than a 14-day supply of what you need.) From a bulk supply of Spam to a bidet, here are their unfiltered panic buying confessions:
The most liked comment on our post came from Instagrammer @morena485, who wrote:
“I bought 5 different types of juices in case I need a mimosa bar.“
#Priorities, and she wasn’t alone in her decision to prioritize alcohol, with other commenters revealing they rushed out to buy red wine, tequila, and White Claw.
One particularly memorable account came from Angelina, whose dad went on a Spam shopping spree at Costco. “Was at Costco with my father. He went one way. I went one way … Forty-five minutes later, this man meets back up with me with a case of Spam,” she recalled. “Then he goes on to tell me he hasn’t had Spam in over 34 (years) since before I was born, when he came to America. But he bought it because, ‘Hell, we might as well get some now, because everything else is running low. And at least I remember what it tastes like!'”
Bulk purchases were the name of the game, including reader Sam Hirsch, who bought a 30-pack of eggs. That sounds potentially reasonable … until you hear the full story. “I had 2 dozen at home,” she confessed, before adding an invite: “50 egg omelettes anyone?”
Casey made an impulse purchase for her kids: ketchup, and LOTS of it. “Eight massive bottles of ketchup,” she wrote along side a bunch of LOL emojis. “I can’t go through the apocalypse with 3 kids and not have ketchup. They’ll kill me.”
Instagram user @littlekcs, on the other hand, used panic buying as a way to channel her inner ’90s kid: She bought Pop-Tarts. “Like I haven’t eaten them since I was a child,” she wrote, laughing it off.
Kat also traveled back in time to buy two frozen pizzas. “I haven’t bought those since college, 10 years ago,” she said of the purchase.
Shana from Oregon also bought some no-frills Italian food: Chef Boyardee. “And I haven’t eaten that since the early ’90s!!?!” she exclaimed. “I’m sure it will live in my pantry until the zombie apocalypse.”
Others found themselves mysteriously purchasing things they don’t even eat.
Lisa Merriam bought a bag of potatoes, though she “[doesn’t] really even eat potatoes.”
Instagrammer @Dreo72 purchased three tubs of hummus, but “no one even likes it” in her house.
Katie Essig said the craziest thing she bought was quinoa. You guessed it: She doesn’t want it. “I was just trying to be ‘healthy,'” Katie said as she explained the purchase. “Who was I kidding? Perhaps the forced enjoyment of quinoa for the next many months will do something for me.”
Others commenters stocked up on essentials beyond food like @raquiesence, who prioritized makeup. “Blush/bronzer palette?!” she revealed as her impulse buy. “So I can look hot while I sit around in my underwear making calls or something.”
And she wasn’t alone. Katie Chase also bought not one, not two, but three different types of nail polish. Lesson learned: Self-care is still important, even in a time of social distancing.
Bathroom needs were a particularly topical choice, especially with the toilet paper draught. “There was no toilet paper, so I got wine and doughnuts,” Brenee Leverett wrote.
Kimmer Schultz bought Kleenex…just in case toilet paper stays sold out. Charles Brooks went a step further, buying a bidet.
Marcia, on the other hand, bought absolutely nothing. And she wasn’t the only commenter to do so: “I purchased nothing we don’t need, because I’m not buying into the mass hysteria and buying only what we normally need. Calm down people, so everyone can get what they need, too.