Thursday, September 26, 2013

Adventures in Grocery Shopping

Here's a novel idea... why don't people mind their own business??? I know that asking people to use common sense is way too much to ask. But really, couldn't they just use a little courtesy, and know when they should open their mouth, and when not to?  Or when it is ok to touch a total stranger's belongings and when it isn't?

I had a truly horrifying experience at the grocery store one night during my senior year of high school, and then today I had an annoying experience that reminded me of the horrible night almost 20 years ago.

It was a normal evening, nothing out of the ordinary, and I had made a quick trip to the "IMP" the International Market Place as our grocery store was known back then.  I was working on a project, and I needed a magazine for that project, I also picked up a few other things, among them were certain feminine hygiene products.  I got in line behind a man and his daughter who was probably in her early to mid-twenties.  It very soon became apparent that this man was drunk.  Very drunk.  And obnoxious.  Very obnoxious.  As the checker rang up their items, this man turned his attention on my items instead.  The name of the magazine that I was buying was "Virtual Earth," and he says, "What is that garbage you're buying? VIRGINAL Earth???" as he is leaning over and picking up my items off the belt to survey them.  His daughter was asking him to leave me alone.  He ignored her, and then spotted the aforementioned feminine hygiene products, and said, "Why are you buying these? I think that REAL women should just let it run down their legs like God intended!!!"  At this point his daughter was completely mortified, and was almost in tears as she apologized to me and dragged him away.  I had stood silently through this entire encounter, unsure what or how to respond, and paid for my things and took them home.

I have remembered that encounter for almost 20 years now.

Today I made a quick lunch time trip to the grocery store to grab a few things.  I ended up getting more than what I'd gone for, which always happens when you go to the store hungry, and I went up to the counter, and I was getting in line, when I paused to look at something, and another guy got in line in front of me. I started putting my stuff on the belt, and another guy got in line behind me.  I've never seen this guy before in my life.  As the cashier was starting to ring up my stuff, the guy behind me starts picking up my stuff off the belt and counting them out loud, "1…2…3…" I looked questioningly at him and he said, "Just kidding." I said, "There wasn't a sign about a limit in this aisle."  The cashier said, "Yeah, I don't have it turned on right now, you're fine."  I look at the guy again, and what came as no surprise to me, saw that he was buying a 6 pack of beer.

Why do people think that it is ok to pick up someone else's groceries and comment on them?  I don't understand that… Sadly, my uncomfortable or annoying encounters are usually fueled by alcohol.  And sadder still, my mother raised me properly, and I know not to say anything if I don't have anything nice to say.   

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