Posts Tagged ‘grocery’

Independence Day is almost here, so before you prove to your kid how cool you are by blowing your hand off you will most likely, at some point, be standing in a line at the grocery store to stock up. This doesn’t have to be a horrible experience, but you’ll have to keep your wits about you. It is very important to keep your head on a swivel, as choosing which check out line you stand in is of great importance. Sure, it’s tempting to pick the line with the hottest clerk, but they’re normally the dumbest ones so don’t be fooled. It’s hard to check somebody out quickly when you can’t read or operate a computer, so skip the Jersey Shore wannabe and find the savvy veteran. You’re looking for messy hair, a fake smile and the smell of cigarettes – because those people want to get you out of there just as fast as you want to leave. Look for flair, or a banged up name tag. The brand new name tag or one with a written-in name on it is a clear sign that you have a rookie and need to abort immediately. Once you’ve made sure the clerk you’ve chosen can read, stays away from spray-on tans and has a few merit badges on their vest – it’s time to scan the crowd.

You will need to pay very close attention to shopping carts and the items contained therein. All other shoppers need to be considered your competition, and treated as such. I don’t trust fruit or vegetables. Anything without a UPC can be subject to a price check intercom call – in which case you’re better off just opening that box of Oreos and taking a seat, because it’s going to be a while before the stock boy finishes his bong hit and makes his way up from the back room.

If you see grey, walk away. The only thing slower than standing behind an elderly person in the grocery line is the Cubs march to a World Series title. Don’t forget that they’re usually packing coupons too, and that is 15 minutes you will never get back.

Keep an eye out for lurkers – they are a pawn in the “lurk and swoop” tactic. Has some woman ever asked to cut you in line because she only has 1 item? This is a red flag, don’t become a victim. If they really only have 1 item they can use the self checkout or go to Walgreens, don’t buy into the bullshit. Watch for people hovering nearby with a cart packed with groceries, if you spot somebody putsing around aimlessly – tell that bitch to stuff it and start filling up the conveyor belt. Trust me, the minute you let her jump in front of you, her snot nosed teenager will come barreling in with a cart full of groceries. I have enough going on during the holiday weekend, I don’t have the time or energy to publicly berate somebody in front of her kids.

Sometimes it’s not as easy to choose your line, there are times when split-second decisions need to be made. Any hesitation at all could cost you an extra 20 minutes standing behind the behemoth man in his motorized cart. Consider the situations below. The color green indicates your average in and out shopper – easily scanned items, no fruit or coupons and sitting at a healthy, quick, mid-life age range. Yellow can represent a slightly slower shopper – maybe you notice a few coupons, or even grey hair – but using your best judgement you would have to assume they’re not too slow. Red will represent a dreadful, old, coupon having, broke, fruit lover who doesn’t know their ass from their elbows – you want to avoid them at all costs, sometimes even if they only have a few items. The numbers represent the number of items each person has in their cart. Exhibit A demonstrates a no-brainer situation: The left lane has 30 items total among red and yellow shoppers while the right line contains 15 total items mainly distributed among the competent variety of shoppers. Pick the line to the right, dumbass. Exhibit B is where it gets a little tricky. The line on the left is predominantly red and yellow shoppers, but they only have 20 total items whereas the line on the right has 15 more items, but are held by quick shoppers. Don’t be afraid to cheat a little, favor the right line but position yourself for the easy switch in case the clerk in left line happens to be an all-star during the middle of his shift. Set yourself up for success and stay sharp, these things can change quickly.

Most importantly, trust your instincts – if they look stupid, they probably are. If the guy in line looks like he might only have $3 in his bank account, he probably does, and get out – because voiding an entire sale due to non-sufficient funds will require you to break out the Oreos again. I know this may seem funny now, but you won’t be laughing when some pimple faced jerkoff cuts you in line after his mother preyed on your kindness and the old lady in front of you shakily gathers her coupons to give to the half-wit bimbo clerk… are those bags of apples, broccoli and nectarines? Cancel your plans.

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I’ve been sent to the grocery store enough times to know the drill, yet every time I get home I seem to have messed it up royally. It would seem that sometime in between being told the shopping list and walking to the car I absolutely forget everything and go rogue. From that point on I’m on my own, so let me caution all of the wives and girlfriends out there: we nod our head only to end the conversation. It’s nothing personal, there is just a limited amount of space up there seeing as how we’ve filled it with witty insults and sports facts ready to be launched at a moment’s notice. I’m afraid that if I keep filling my brain with more tasks they’ll eventually push out Walter Payton’s all time career combined net yards (21,803), and that is not a risk I am willing to take. Shopping list? Please – it’s like a receipt, as soon as any small piece of paper (receipt, post-it, traffic ticket)  is put in my hand I crumple it up and toss it on the ground. IT’S NOT MY FAULT! I have just been conditioned to do that, hell, most of the time I make a game out of it. Ever see how small you can crumple one of those? I would kick your ass at that!

Skim milk you say? How about a 4 pack of Monster instead. Lunch meat, wheat bread and mayonnaise? I’m getting a frozen pizza and calling it a day. You want me to go to the bakery section and ask for a special assortment of… that one never even had a chance, I’m most likely coming home with a donut. I will also not be held responsible for buying random shit either. Putting me in a big place like that surrounded by dozens of identical items with different brand names at different prices and bargain deals is destined to make me panic. Instead of getting paper towels I might end up with an issue of Guitar World Magazine, sue me, they’re both paper products – it’s an easy mistake. have you ever been in a cereal aisle? Holy shit – it’s dizzying. Generally everything goes blurry, I black out, then wake up at the checkout line with 26 boxes of Lucky Charms in my cart.

Don’t even get me started on the checkout line. If I end up with Kit-Kats, Now-n-Laters, and the latest issue of Quick and Easy Recipes, it’s only because I’ve spent the past 40 minutes standing behind Mildrid as she disputes the sale price on her Depends then fails to locate her checkbook. So I’ve come home with Monster, a pizza, donuts, candy and magazines… so what? Milk, bread and lunch meat are overrated. This is you’re fault anyway. If you really wanted us to remember the shopping list – you would buy an advertising slot during televised sporting events… or write it down on your chest.

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A war tale

Posted: March 13, 2010 in Whatever
Tags: , , , , ,

They assemble at 05:00 hours, discussing the attack strategy and preparing for the morning’s battle. It is today that they have prepared for, today for which they have meticulously mapped every obstacle and it is today that they have strategized every possibility in expectation of a victorious outcome. It is Free Sample Friday at Pick ‘n’ Save and I had no idea what I was getting myself into. This elderly battalion stood armed and ready, clothed in their smocks loaded with plastic gloves. Their utility belts were full of tooth picks, dixie cups and plastic sporks ready to be disbursed at a moment’s notice. All were ready for the grueling 3 hour shift, and prepared for the long haul by wearing their trademark orthopedic non-slip sneakers. At the front door stood Beauford, unassuming yet vehement in his goal to make sure I tasted the pineapple chunks he had sprawled out before him. I hurled a barrel of oranges at his feet and darted into the cereal aisle. I avoided disaster briefly but there stood Mabel, armed and ready with a wide array of oatmeal bars. I avoided eye contact but it just wasn’t enough to halt the barrage. She followed me down the aisle, launching a verbal assault of discounted sale prices and comparisons to lesser brands. Mabel fought her hardest but her swollen feet just weren’t enough to keep up so I was able to escape unscathed. As I screeched through the beverage section to cross off the final task on my grocery list I was confronted with my toughest foe yet. Ruth was prepared, ready and willing to do whatever it took to ensure I sampled the V8 drink she had set before her. I tried to escape left, then right but it was obvious she had been studying me for quite some time. Eye contact avoidance, turning my back, even the patented ‘wave off’ and “no thanks” were unsuccessful. I backed away slowly but quickly realized they had both exits flanked – one by a table of pizza rolls, the other by sausage and cheese trays. Panic began to set in and I feared for the worst. Ruth moved in closer, her prosthetic knee creaking. In the reflection of her oversized inch-thick eyeglasses I noticed Beauford closing in on me. That bastard managed to fend off my orange attack and was aggravated – trucking down the aisle at a pace so fast the tennis balls were propelled from his walker. I thought this was it, I  prepared to give in to the sample and as I put the cup to my lips I heard a sound so sweet it must have come from the heavens – it was my salvation. Dashing through the dairy section perched atop her shopping cart was my wife. Lauren’s ferocity was unmatched by our assailants as she blasted through Ruth’s table of terrible and crushed Beauford’s tray of annoyance. With a sense of urgency so great I leapt into the cart as we sped to the checkout line. We had made it… for now. Walking away from the grocers battlefield I saw Mabel gazing, grinning into the distance. Some say it’s Alzheimer’s, but I am sure she was mentally preparing for the next battle. Today we were victorious, purchasing only what we needed and not succumbing to the tactics of our elders. William Wallace would be proud.

“Fight and you may die. Run and you’ll live – at least a while. And dying in your beds many years from now, would you be willing to trade all the days from this day to that for one chance, just one chance to come back here and tell our enemies that they may annoy us with unsolicited granola, but they’ll never take our freedom!!!”

Hell hath no fury like a rejected free sample employee

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