Tuesday, June 11, 2002

Significant Animal Companion Peeves

I forgot to bring my yogurt to work today. Again. I swear, I'd leave my head at home most mornings if it wasn't firmly attached to my shoulders. My neighbors must have the hugest laughs to see me turn around at the end of the block and come back, pull up in the driveway, get out, go in the house, get back in the car, drive off, return a few minutes later just to check and see if I remembered to close the damn garage door or not.

I'm always forgetting stuff. Today it happened to be yogurt. I must have yogurt in the morning at work because I can't eat breakfast before leaving the house (for reasons I won't discuss with you folks) and if I eat what's in the vending machines at work, it's either some 85g of fat doughnut that's been dipped in wax, or a slightly less fattening 75g muffin. The muffins are evil because you think they're healthy, what, with their names like "homemade blueberry" or "raspberry crunch." Anything that has fruit in it must be healthy, right? It's like eating Crisco with berries in it. Very heart smart.

So, the yogurt. I stop at the Jewel down the street from the office, and run in to pick up some yogurts. I'm actually ahead of schedule today, which is rare, seeing as an hour's drive finds any way possible to throw wrenches into your schedule. So I'm excited that I'm going to get into work a couple of minutes early, even with the yogurt errand.

I run up to the first counter, fifteen items or less, and the guy's obviously having one of those price-check debacles that requires a manager who's just over that "privacy" wall two feet away but isn't paying attention to the clerk who's calling his name over the effing intercom, rather than just walking two feet and knocking on the damn door.

So I run over to register two. Still fifteen items or less. Sweet. She's got somewhere close to fifteen items, but things are moving along swimmingly. The clerk's scanning those items just as fast as her little hands can grab them. And then...the customer does the unthinkable:

"Oh, and a pack of Marlboro Lights."

The clerk turns to the bagboy, and repeats the item as a command, "Marlboro Lights."

Then it hits me. The bagboy's one of the special people. Now, I love special people. Honest to god. Those people bring tears of joy to my eyes when I see them being contributing members of society, and they're happy to do it. But when the trip from one side of the store to the other and back just to pick up a pack of smokes takes ten god damned minutes, it's time to re-think your errand strategy as a clerk or better still, as a store manager.

The girl behind the register could have sent him off to go pick up the smokes, knowing damn well it was going to take forever, and while he was away on his errand, finished checking the woman out who wanted the cigarettes. Then the clerk could have continued checking out people's groceries until such a time when the bagboy returned with the smokes, placed said smokes in woman's bag, and sent her on her merry smoking way.

But no. We all sat there. The clerk sat there, and watched this guy shuffle all the way across the store. And back. It was cruel and inhumane punishment. For everyone. We had to sit there and watch the guy, and he knew all eyes were on him on his return trip. I don't even feel bad for being upset, because I'm not upset at the bagboy. He was going as fast as his legs would take him. I'm pissed at the clerk or the manager for sending that guy on the errand. He should be bagging groceries. It's what he's good at. It's what they hired him to do. I'm sure when they hired him, they didn't say "hey, we need a really slow walker for the runs to the cigarette case." I'm on his side. I'm embarrassed for him.

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