I just got back from the grocery store, and I have to admit, I'm pretty fired up. I've been living in Brooklyn for about 3 years, and if there's one thing I could change, it would be the grocery store situation. It's always been difficult to get my groceries from point A to point B without a car, but thus far, I've dealt. For the past couple years my local grocery store has been Western Beef. I loath it, but that's to be expected when you grow up in an area where Wegmans' exists. To put it this way, if Wegmans is the Cadillac of supermarkets, that would make Western Beef the dinky three-wheeled thing that Urkel drove.
I know by now that it's not safe to shop there anytime between 10AM-8PM, which is why I went at 9 this morning. It didn't start out so bad. I only had to wait at the deli counter 3 minutes while saying "excuse me" to the slicer-girl until she realized I was there. Then I got up to the register and there was no line! A FIRST! So I start to unload my groceries on the conveyor belt, telling the cashier as she reaches for a plastic bag, "I brought my own bags." Ohhhhh, wrong choices of words. What I should have said was, "YOU can use these bags to put my groceries in since I don't work here, and it's not my job, and it's not posted anywhere that this line or store is a BYO groceries store." That's what I should have said.
So I have my receipt in my hand before my first reusable shopping bag is packed. And before me is $88 dollars worth of crap groceries, one man behind me in line, and now both him and a very impatient cashier staring at my as I'm loading up my bags with no help. Now I've been a cashier before, and whether or not someone brings their own bags, you help pack them unless they specifically ask you not to. IT'S IN YOUR JOB DESCRIPTION!!
I'm huffing and puffing while I'm loading my bags as fast as possible. Finally with all my bags firmly stowed in my granny-cart, I go to exit the store. On the way out I see what looks to be the manager standing at the door. I just had to ask...
Me: Um yeah, hi, excuse me. I have a question. What's your policy on bringing my own shopping bags? I mean, if I bring my own does that mean I have to bag my own?
Western Beef Manager: Well you're more than welcome to bag your own.
Me: Yes, I understand that, but I find it kind of silly that I'm bagging my own groceries with no help.
WBM: Why is that silly?
Me: Because it's a cashier's job to cash me out and bag my groceries.
WBM: Look, we're an equal opportunity employer here. (he snickers)
Me: Right. But I don't work here.
(that shut him up real quick)
Me: I'm not trying to make a big deal about it, but it seems to be a popular theme each time I come in; I'm stuck bagging my own groceries with no help, while there is a huge line, and I'm just being watched by the cashier.
WBM: Well, yes. You can bag your own groceries if you bring your own bags. Or the cashiers can help.
Needless to say I didn't get very far. The manager seemed in full support of the cashier's laziness. I'm not trying to change the world, but all I'm hoping for is that next time I come in, I might get a little help.