…when I asked the Wal-Mart Checkout Aid why I was being forced to use the Self-Checkout register, she gave me a clear, but completely infuriating answer.
“Because obviously no one is on the registers!” she snapped rudely.
“I ask again,” I calmly replied,” Why am I being forced to check out my own items? You all installed these as a convenience for those that don’t want to wait in longer lines. I have a basket full of groceries and a bad back.”
“Sir, you just have to scan each item and bag them.” (same nasally irritating voice with an attitude)
“Isn’t that your job?”
“No, I’m here to assist you.”
“Well, isn’t it THEIR job?”
“When they’re HERE, yes…”
At this point, nearby shoppers turned their eyes and ears to our “discussion”.
“Well, why aren’t theyyyyy, HERE?”
“It’s after midnight. After hours.”
“If it’s after hours, why aren’t you closed?”
“SIR, if you want someone to ring your groceries up, you should come during normal hours.”
“Ma’am, if I work 2nd or 3rd shift, has it ever occurred to you that these ARE my normal hours?”
“Ok, let me ask THIS…” I began again, to her frustration, “If I have to ring up and bag my own groceries, will I get a discount?”
“Why not? You cut your overhead by reducing your manpower at the front registers. Your pay ultimately comes from store sales. The way I see it, you all are expecting us to do your job while you get full pay AND bonus potential at your profit-sharing meetings because of your cut costs. Meanwhile, I still have to pay full PRICE. Does that sound right to you?
“The way I see it,” I continued, “if we’re doing YOUR job because you all won’t make associates available, the LEAST your company can do is offer a 5-10% discount for us having to ring up and bag our purchases when no other option is available. Because we don’t work NORMAL hours.”
“Sir, I just work here.”
“You’re right. And I DON’T,” I replied as I moved my cart to my very own checkout spot, made just for me and me only.
She smiled victoriously as I removed my first items to scan them. What she wasn’t prepared for was me pushing the “Call For Assistance” button before singing out, “Oh Missssssss…”
I needed her to give coded authorization because I was purchasing a bottle of Dayquil AND Nyquil, which exceeds the limit (another unnecessary delay in the transaction process). Neither of us said a word as she completed the override and walked away.
“Oh, Misssss…” (I needed the code for apples)
“Oh, Misssss…” (I needed the code for onions)
“Oh, Misssss…” (I needed the code for bananas)
I looked at her and smiled before each request for help.
I was angry, but quickly feeling a whole lot better.
“Thank God for you,” I offered to her, “I’m so glad you work here.”
As I loaded the last item into the plastic bag, I noticed that she was still staring in both aggravation and relief that I was finally done. It was clear that she knew that I knew that she knew that I knew, I didn’t have to be an asshole about things.
But sometimes, I’m not content with being an asshole.
Sometimes, I have to be a whole ASS…
I STILL NEEDED HELP SCANNING COUPONS!
…and they BETTER send me a W2 Form come tax time.
This has been, another Retail Re-Tale.
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