Saturday, June 20, 2009

Paper or plastic?

I just have to share my experience at Target this afternoon.

We were on our way home from my grandpa's 80th birthday party, and I had decided that I would leave as soon as we got home to go grocery shopping. Well, within 5 minutes on the road, Jackson fell asleep. So we decided instead to stop for groceries on the way home--I would run in and be really quick, and Jack could keep napping in the car. Dan dropped me off at the door and went to find some shade to park in. I was instructed to call him when I got in line so he could come get me.

I went about my shopping, really quickly, and proceeded to find a lane for checking out. It was rather busy at the lanes, but I managed to find a seemingly short one. I pulled in and called Dan. "Honey, I just got to the check-out, and I'm the second person in line." Well, with the person who happened to be the first in line, I may as well have been the eighth in line. She didn't have a ridiculous amount of stuff, but she had a few key items that needed a head cashier's help (like two really expensive Norelco trimmers). Paired with an uber-slow cashier, it was starting to get painful. I kept adding my things to the belt as there was room. And then I just watched, becoming immediately aware that this cashier wasn't even trying to move things along. Scan, pause, bag. Scan, ponder which bag to put item in, bag. Scan, pause, bag. Lift filled bag as if it's the heaviest thing EVER and sigh loudly.

FINALLY, the scanning was complete. Then, the best part. Woman-who-was-first-in-line pulled out her STACK of coupons. Honestly, and I do mean honestly, she had at least 30 coupons. Oh, at least. I wish I had counted. And of course, not all of them were easy to scan. She had a couple coupons for her expensive trimmers, and just like the trimmers themselves, the coupons needed Ms. Head Cashier. (By this time, I'm telling people who get in line behind me that they should probably pick a different lane--this one is taking a while).

FINALLY, the woman in front of me is done (after slowly getting the rest of her crap into her cart) and on her way. My turn! I push my cart to the credit card reader and slide my check card as Ms. Slow Cashier rolls my watermelon across the scanner. She puts it in a bag and sighs loudly again as she practically drops the bag on the platform for me to take. "Oh, I'm so exhausted," she says as she apparently decides to take a break from scanning for a minute. Sorry, lady, I can't have you doing that. "Edith, I'm kind of in a hurry. Could you keep scanning please?" Then my phone rings, which I don't realize right away because I got a new phone this morning and I'm not used to the ringtone yet. Of course, it's my poor husband wondering why the heck I called 20 minutes ago (no lie) and am still not outside. "Don't even ask. I'll *hopefully* be out in a minute."

In the meantime, 'hurry it up, Edith' has apparently been translated as 'get this woman's crap into bags as quickly and haphazardly as I can and get her out of my lane.' Again, I couldn't let it go. "Could you please be more careful and stop throwing my things into bags?" That one drew looks from the couple in the next lane. :) She finishes her "scan and drop" method, presses a few buttons and mumbles something (I'm assuming the total) toward her screen. I handed her my ONE coupon (free deli cheese when you buy deli meat!) and let her take care of it. I had already scanned my card, so my receipt popped out and she held it toward my general direction in her left hand as she began scanning the next woman's items with her right hand. "Thank you," I tried, but Edith was done with me.

I exited the store, having spent twice as much time in line as I did actually shopping, and unloaded my bags into the van. I tried to explain to Dan what just happened, but I was still processing it myself. Of course, Dan wants me to call and complain, but having been a cashier at Target, I know that complaint won't go anywhere. Edith will keep doing her thing, and those of us who have the privilege of going through her lane just have to learn our lesson.


amy + ryan said...

UGH. And I thought MY experience at Target last week was bad - the cashier seemed half asleep and didn't say a WORD to us the entire time. Not ONE WORD.

Dumb Edith. She must be very unhappy.

As always, I'm so glad I stopped by. It's always a pleasure to read your writing. :)

Marian said...

I was sensing your frustration as I was reading your blog. Your mom and I would have been fired in a minute if we tried to pull that crap at the A & P 40 (!) years ago.

Heidi said...

Ugh. I love good cashiers...the ones who organize the bags perfectly and have just the right amount of things to say. The other ones? Not so much.

What Now? said...

Ooooh, I had an eerily similar experience at Target yesterday. Octogenarian cashier, one customer with too many "complicated" items, need to call in the head cashier for coupons, ...

I do find it funny that Edith took out her anger on your produce. Don't mess with Edith!

You didn't even play the "I'm about 15 months pregnant here, lady" card? Such restraint!