Monday, March 23, 2015

I Have To Rant

The other day (actually it was Friday afternoon)  I went to the local WalMart store to pick up ONE item for my wife which she forgot on an earlier shopping spree.  I entered, was greeted to which I responded a pleasantry and continued to the shelf which had the item I needed.  It really doesn't matter what the item was, but to calm one's curiosity, it was meringue powder for frosting. She was making fancy cupcakes for a baby shower for our #4 son's wife's soon-to-be-here twins.

Anyway, I picked up the item and briskly walked to checkout.  Now, things get interesting.

I was about to go to checkout #1 but I saw two women easing into the aisle, the one had a few items in her hands and the other was pushing a standard-sized cart. I, at that time, didn't realize they were together.

Aisle #2 had a customer but was almost finished.  I decided to go there.  Of course, there was some issue about the customer's debit card.  So things slowed down in front of me.  No problem.  I start to look around and noticed that the two women at #1 checkout are stacking items onto the counter and the checkout girl is frantically ringing the items as fast as she can.


The woman has just placed - no stacked  -  10 packages of cream cheese on the counter.  They are right behind 3 boxes of something else. I also see 2 bottles (bleach?) and then I glance at the shopping cart.  It is filled, not in a disheveled, willy-nilly, anything goes, but neatly packed.  We are talking solid packing. I can see what appears to be almost 10+ boxes of frozen pizza.  There are also other neatly stack boxes of what probably are frozen items.  Below, there are at least 8 to 10 bottles of 2-liter pop and 3 packages of toilet paper.

Okay, the first woman had at least 4 or 5 items in her hands and all the other stuff already checked.

I glance up at the sign to make sure it says what I think it should say.

FAST LANE  -  20 items or less

Yup, this was the speed checkout lanes and this woman had at least 50+ items!!!  Should I also mention we are at the opposite end of the checkouts farthest away from the groceries?  She had to have passed the self-check, the speed lanes and at least 8 or more full serve lanes.

During this short amount of time, another woman has walked up behind her, noticed the cart and then quickly moved to stand behind me.  Another gentleman has joined us.

The woman at checkout #1 sees me shaking my head in disgust.  Her reaction?

The conversation went something like this...

"What's your problem?"  She asked as she moves another 5 boxes of what appears to be boxed potatoes,

It is time for me to stand-up for my store-given rights. I spoke up. I pointed at the sign and said, "This is a 20 or less items checkout area."

She snarled: "Well, we asked the checkout and she said it was okay."  (I saw the other woman with her who had a few items talking to the checkout so I assume this to be true - and in the checkout's defense, I figured she thought it was for the items that woman had in her hands, not the grocery cart.)

"It takes a lot of nerve to even ask a checkout to overlook the rules." I point to the three people NOW behind me. "I'm sure these people are thrilled that you're checking out in the speed lanes."  (My checkout clerk is cleared and takes my item from the counter and rings it up. She greets me but says nothing about the tirade now happening from counter #1.)

"Mind your own business and don't worry about us."

"Oh, trust me, I'm checking out in this lane. No problem here."  I pay my bill and head out, thoroughly disgusted with that woman. I'm sure my blood pressure is up.

I'm approaching my car which is parked right outside, next to the handicap.  I hear a woman yelling "Sir! Sir!" and see the woman who was behind me running toward me.

"I wanted to thank you for saying what I was too afraid to voice."

I grinned and thanked her.  She added. "I told her as I left that I would have been out of the store a lot faster if she had went to a regular checkout with all her stuff."

At that moment, the guy who was behind her - yup, he joins us and reaches for my hand.

"I just wanted to shake your hand, sir. More people need to stand up to rude jerks like that woman.  By the way, she still had items in her grocery cart to put on the counter when I walked out."

I thanked the both of them and got in my car as they headed for their cars.  Yes, I had a warm, fuzzy feeling inside me.  I drove home.

My mind has played the scenario over and over.  I don't think I would normally had said anything but she instigated my ire.  If she had not said anything, I would have shaken my head in disgust and went on silently like any other good lamb.

After evaluation, I'm 68 and I've decided it is time to speak up.  If I don't, people will walk over me and take advantage of the situations.  Maybe this was the first time this woman has tried to sneak into the speed lane but something tells me she has done this many times before. Why? They asked the clerk if they could go through which makes me think this is not a first timer.

If you have 21, maybe 22 items, I don't see an issue, but... Oh, well.

Until the next time I ramble on...


  1. We all need to speak up more. We had some crazy dealings with a neighbor that wouldn't have happened if others had spoken up along the way -- he was emboldened and assumed we, too, would roll over and play dead. We didn't. It was a long, difficult ordeal, but I don't think he'll mess with us anymore.

    As for the express lanes, it makes me crazy when I see something like this happening. I figured she was going to argue that the ten packages of cream cheese counted as "1" item.

    1. I've often wondered if 2/$1 counts as 1 or 2 items in a speed lane. I usually play it safe and consider everything as 1 item UNLESS it is bundled as 1 item. But that is a valid question, when they say items, are they counting individual units or individual like items... so 10 cream cheese would be 1 item. Hmm?

  2. I feel guilty when I only have a couple of items and don't use the express lane. It's like I am taking up someone else' spot. Good for you for standing your ground.

    1. Ah-ha! You're the one in my regular checkout counter cluttering it with your measly 1 or 2 items. LOL. Even with speed lanes, sometimes it is faster to go through regular lanes.

  3. I see the culprits had their subterfuge well planned. If only they had turned their ingenuity to something useful. And they were offensively defensive, too. Yes, we do need to speak up more.

    1. Of course, I can only do things like that when my wife is not along - I seem to embarrass her too often. You seen me, or my dopples, the guy who breaks in a little wiggle dance when the right song comes on, or saying the wrong (so they think) thing at the most inappropriate time. I never asked for the maternity dept - no, I asked for the 'knocked-up ladies' dept. I see no reason to mince words. A young saleslady asked me in the men's dept (underwear) if she could help me. I bluntly asked if they had any underwear for guys with no butts so when I dropped my pants, my underwear wouldn't be so baggy. Eighty shades of red later, she still had no answer but did walk away. NOW, I'm learning to express myself with those who offend me.

  4. Been there, but I didn't say anything. Maybe next time ...

  5. Well done Bob - a great example to us all.