Posts Tagged ‘old’

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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It’s no secret that I struggle to keep a smile on my face during the weekdays. I’ve been told countless times that the key to happiness is to “enjoy the little things”. I did, and still do, think this is kind of a crock of shit; but something happened to me yesterday that helped me understand what they’re all talking about. For some people, perhaps seeing a group of ducklings following their mother may instill a moment of happiness and help to crack a smile, but I’m wired a bit differently.

I was at the store where, on my way to check-out, I slowed down to grab a beverage from the mini cooler on the counter. Let me be clear that I did not stop my progress, I merely slowed down. This is important to point out because if I had stopped to ponder my choice of drink, I would understand what happened next. As I slowed down and leaned in to grab the bottle, the guy behind me sped up and stepped in front of me in line. Bastard! I was left with nothing to do but look at him now, and analyze. I got pretty lucky because this guy was a douchebag in every sense of the word. He was an older man, I’m guessing around 45. One of those kind of guys you can just tell hates any generation before or after his. he was wearing white stone-washed jeans, a Harley Davidson jacket, work boots and had one of those fucked up bloodshot noses that indicates he may or may not have been drunk for the majority of his life. What was even better were the items he was purchasing. He cut me in line to buy an economy sized bottle of $1 hair gel and a bottle of aspirin. I guess being as cool as this guy is so hard it hurts. To make matters worse, he argued with the clerk because she couldn’t break his $100 bill (for his $4 purchase) so we had to wait while the manager brought change. I finally had my chance to check-out and the shitbag was still standing right by me, slowly putting the money back into his clip and counting the change. This was perfect, his delay is what ultimately cost him some aggravation later.

I hurried to get to my car before him in order to execute my plan. Good thing he thought he was so damn cool because he did his tough guy slow walk all the way to his Hummer (because nothing says “look at me” like the Tiny Wiener Mobile). I got to the parking lot exit right before he did, and this lot empties onto an incredibly busy street. I know from experience that you could end up waiting to turn for as long as 8 minutes, so I picked my time wisely. I noticed the break in traffic coming, and when it came I didn’t move. The exit is also one where the sides are curbed in, so he was stuck right behind me. He was livid, as expected, and I grinned and laughed uncontrollably as he waved his hands around and beeped the horn at me. About 3 minutes went by and I noticed the next wave of traffic coming. I checked the rear view mirror one last time to see he had given up – the flailing and honking were reduced to one steady middle finger, he knew what was coming. At the last possible second I peeled out in front of the traffic giving him the parting gift of my middle finger extensively visible out of my window leaving Mr. McFuckbag sitting there having to wait for god knows how much longer. When I looked back he had both elbows on the steering wheel with both hands on his head. I smiled all the way home. I guess they’re right – you really do have to enjoy the little things.

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