The other day, my wife and I went to Target to pick up a couple items. I like Target. For the most part it’s clean most of the time, they have employees that don’t seem to have a chip on their shoulder if you ask for help, and I haven’t notices an abundance of what I call “Trailor Park Dropouts” there. You know the people. You can see them on http://www.peopleofwalmart.com. Anyway, after picking up the three or four items we needed, we head to the checkout. The fun begins…
At the head of the line was a lady that appeared to be in her mid 40’s. She was apparently buying one of everything in the store, from the looks of her cart. My guess is that the cashier (we’ll come back to this in a minute) trying to scan the items didn’t understand how the scanner works. The cashier would pick up an item, and without even attempting to locate a barcode, would wave it over the laser like the laser was magically going to identify the product. After only a couple hundred attempts on each item, everything was finally scanned. Meanwhile, the line forming behind my was getting steadily longer. It was beginning to look like when the Star Wars nerds camp out for a new sequel. Somewhere in the distance, near the back of the line I could hear mumbling about “mutiny” and “set the building on fire”. As much as I wanted to join that conversation, I stayed where I was.
Now it’s time to to pay for everything. Fantastic. I thought to myself, “At least Boy George on the register can do this.” I learned a valuable lesson immediately. Don’t make assumptions about the abilities of other people. The man/woman/person that was serving as the cashier may have been able to take the payment, but Ms. Forty-Something felt the need to let the line simmer for a bit. Out comes the coupons. Evidently, she had six to eight for each item, many of which wouldn’t scan, so a supervisor had to come to the rescue. The supervisor seemed like he was nice enough. Based on how long it took him to get to the register, he drove there from India. He puts the magic key into the keyboard, hit a couple buttons, and whatever starting a keyboard with a key does, happened. Miraculously, it took all of the coupons. Every one of them. I think a couple were even in crayon. The Ms. Forty-something pulls her checkbook out of her purse, and begins filling out a check. The line behind me sounded like a football stadium when the home team fumbles. In the back, the mutineers were saying something about “hit her with the car” and “being too old to drive”. Ms. Forty-Something is shooting me an “Eat dirt, and die” look. I quit yelling what I was, about the stone age, and continued to wait.
Of this entire situation, the only part I have a real problem with is her writing a check. Who uses checks anymore for public purchases anyway? I know it’s hard to conceive, but you COULD actually use a debit card, and achieve the same result. The notion that she would even consider using it after holding up the line for that long was ridiculous.
When I finally got to the register, with my melted ice cream, sour milk, and raisins (grapes), I got my first good look at the beauty running this little nightmare. Picture if you would, Colin Hay (Men at Work) in drag…badly. He/she/it said “Hi”. I looked into the eye that I thought was looking at me and said the first thing that came to mind; “Nice nails.”