Tag Archives: grocery store

The Lurker is a Person in your Neighborhood

new-friendI slipped out of my home and blended into the urban landscape. Nothing to notice here. Just another lost soul looking miserable and drifting along with the tides of refuse dotted across the city. For good measure I even added a limp which wasn’t that much of a stretch since my ankle was still smarting from being smashed on a rock during our last whitewater rafting trip. (A story that has yet to be told.)

No fedora, tattoos, Nike footwear, North Face jacket or 1890’s neckbeards for me. I was projecting identity that screamed, “Leave me the fuck alone.” It helps a lot to be ugly and look as grim as possible.

And so it was I moved silently through the city. Which is rather odd for me since I seldom leave the house. We’re the quintessential Portland family. We have less automobiles than residents in our home. My wife was gone so that meant I had to make other arrangements.

Arriving at the bus stop I leaned against the sign. I must have just missed it since it took many spawns to arrive. I climbed aboard and asked the driver, “Is it okay if I don’t have exact change?” He said it was so I stuck in three one dollar bills for the $2.50 fare. My transfer printed and I couldn’t help but notice no change was offered. So that’s how that shit works. I paused for a reflective moment of gratitude that I hadn’t tried a one hundred dollar bill.

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Save the “best by” dates

Make the first incision at the anus then use scissors to bisect the patty equally

My grocery store tried to fuck me yesterday. Luckily I was on my toes and was able to leap out of the way.

My wife’s shopping list had, among other things, something known as “mushroom broth.” Against all odds I was able to find this item in the store – and all by myself! Beaming with pride I grabbed a box and tossed it in my basket.

Later, wandering the store, I happened to check the date of another item, this time “heavy cream.” It’s a milk product so it seemed natural to check the date. Then it occurred to me, maybe it would be a good idea to check the dates on all my items.

Yep. You guessed it. The box of mushroom broth was a bad boy. The “current” date was Mar. 16, 2010. The box said “best by Nov. 7, 2009.” Argh! That was over four months ago!!! Bastards.

I went back and checked the rest of the boxes of mushroom broth. Every single box remaining said “best by Sep. 2, 1010.” Just my luck to be the idiot to grab the only bad box on the shelf. It must have been a special delivery for the abyss. Ha ha, suckers! You missed me … this time.

They must leave the out of date item on the shelf in the hopes of snaring an unmindful idiot like me. Lucky for me I wised up, because rotted mushroom juice doesn’t sound that appetizing.

Something good happened at the grocery store

It’s only 11 a.m. and I already did my good deed for the day. Wha???

Did I mention it’s cold where I work? I think in three or four posts I may have mentioned it’s cold enough in the offices here to hang sides of beef and invite Rocky in for a training session. So I was sitting here and realized I need to bring my core temperature up or I was going to die. I went to microwave a cup of hot water then, oh no – I’m out of tea bags!

I went and got permission to take a little break early (a dicey proposition but it worked out) and hit the grocery store that is about five blocks away.

I grabbed my tea bags and went to checkout. Naturally only one line was open and there were so many people waiting that the line essentially split in three directions. It was a dragon with three heads. I got a lot of skunk eye when I approached, like people were saying, “don’t even think about it, fucker.” Good times, as always!

I got at the end of what I thought was the last person and hunkered down for what would no doubt be a long, long wait with my lonely, solitary item.

Then it happened. They opened another lane and a woman ahead of me with a heaping full cart waved me in front. I declined, saying she was clearly there first. But she was so insistent about it. She really wanted me ahead of her and wouldn’t take “no” for an answer. We went back and forth a few times to the point it was starting to feel weird and awkward. I finally gave in. It took me a moment to recognize what an odd feeling it was. Sure, I do things like that for other people all the time. But no one has ever done it for me.

What an odd sensation!

So when I was done, I had a couple bucks of change. I waved the checker over and whispered in his ear, please keep it and give it to the lady behind me and then I high-tailed it the hell out of Dodge. Yippie! Today’s good deed is a done dealio. 🙂

Being put “on hold” while standing in line

Grocery store customer serviceHere’s a question. When you are waiting in line at the grocery store or the local retail outlet, who answers the phone when it rings?

In my experience, it is the person at the checkout counter. You know, the place where you have already been standing in line! The person who was, at least until the phone rang, paying actual attention to you.

In my city, this mainly happens at grocery stores and the local Staples. I’ll wait my turn, get to checkout when I’m finally being helped, the phone will ring and I’ll essentially be put “on hold” as a human being while the person on the phone suddenly jumps to the front of the queue and gets helped before everyone else who was already there.

What is the message here? The most obvious one I can think of is, “We’re cheap bastards. We can’t afford to have anyone besides the person taking our customer’s money answer the phone.”

The more subtle message, in my opinion is: “Hey sucker. We’ve already got you on the hook and we’re about to lay claim to your cash. The fish on the phone isn’t as got as you so they are a much higher priority than you. You sad, pathetic excuse of a customer. Please fuck yourself as you wait. Oh, and don’t forget to puruse last minute items like candy and tabloids.”

Chocolat: Commando raid on the grocery store

Yes - those are real M&M candies

Yes - those are real M&M candies

Note: Be sure to pronounce the word “chocolat” from the title correctly. That will give this post a more sophisticated aire.

I’m planning a new section of the blog. I don’t have the perfect name for it yet, but basically it will consist of posts documenting my “commando raids” on grocery stores.

The other day I was shopping with my wife. You know, shuffling my feet behind her, standing around bored, trying to keep my back from popping out, while she spent about 2.3 years filling her shopping cart.

We went through the bulk foods part of the store and I vaguely noticed M&M candies. Then, when we traversed the regular candy aisle, I saw more M&M candies and thought I noticed something funny about the pricing.

I decided to conduct a raid and get some answers. This is what I found out from this morning’s mission:

Target: M&M candy pricing

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