Sunday, May 31, 2009
Grocery check-out etiquette
Once again, a trip to the store reminds me that it would be a relatively pleasant errand if only there were no people involved!
So today I would like to introduce some new rules for grocery store check-out etiquette. (This is just one more reason the farmer's market is superior to the conventional store, but alas, I cannot buy all of my groceries there, and they are only open for a few months out of the year.)
Rule #1: Do not ask a question if you do not want to listen to the answer.
Today's question from the chirpy checker, in the 90-degree heat, was, "Enjoying the weather?"
Silence ensued. It's like how clerks always ask how your day is going, and you're always supposed to say, "Great!" or some other b.s. because they won't listen to your answer anyway. Once I replied, "I'm having a really shitty day, actually," just to see what the checker would say.
Him: "That's nice." I am not making this up! So Rule #1: if you feel compelled to say something, just leave it at "hello."
Rule #2: Do not ask me if I want certain items bagged.
Of course I want them bagged, because I am not a juggler, and I have been born with only two arms. When I figure out how to grow extra ones spontaneously after checking out, I will let you know.
OK, I can understand not having the already-bagged bag of cat litter in a bag. But a sack of potatoes? Do I want them leaking dirt everywhere? A sack of oranges: do I want them bruised? A container of laundry soap: do I want to hit someone with it? OK, best move on to Rule #3.
Rule #3: Please don't ask me if I found everything I was looking for. Because inevitably, if I say, "no, you're out of cat food," the reply will be, "Um, sorry about that," or, "Oh, I see." There is no solution, no prize to collect, so why ask me? Also, what if I was also looking for world peace or sex toys in aisle 5? What would you say then, hmm?
Rule #4: Don't overstuff a sack that looks like it's about to break the second I will pick it up. Case in point: today the cashier piled so much stuff in there that you couldn't even see (let alone use) the handes, and said, "Does that work for you?" I must have given her a funny look, because wordlessly, she unpacked some of the items and grabbed another bag.
Rule #5: Don't tell me I look familiar. I am reasonably certain that in this life, at least, I have not slept with you.