I don’t understand why I expect a single day to go buy at a simple job at an average supermarket to go by without an incident. With all of the defined “weirdoes” in today’s world this expectation is unrealistic, yet 5 days a week I go there hoping that once-just once-I could get through a day without being yelled at by an angry customer. Just simply walking through the parking lot from my car brings on the sounds of another day at a dead end job: the sounds of the carriages being slammed together and the scrapping on the concrete the stuck wheels make as the carriage boy brings them inside; the yells of customers walking towards the store forcing young children to hurry up; the quick hushed voices talking to other unknown voices far away wondering what wasn’t putting on the weekly shopping list; the clamoring of carriages through the foyer and the rush of customers attempting to claim one for themselves. The sounds heard simply walking into the building are enough to make any employee cringe at the thought of dealing with these lovely people at some point in their shift. As I put my sweatshirt away I’m greeted by fellow sufferers who have been here for hours, already most of the way through their shifts, exhausted from the constant flow of people entering the store. Their low grumbles are enough to make a man fear what sorts of customers I will be forced to be pleasant to today. As I walk behind the customer service desk, where I am unfortunate enough to work, the person I am relieving cannot wait for my arrival. They give me a recap of the day’s events as I space out, not really caring and wanting to get the remainder of the day over with. They then wish me luck as go on their merry way. Then it hits me: the yelling of the old lady that got overcharged on her toilet paper; the gambler in the corner wasting his money away playing the numbers that he will never win; the foreign lady who no one understands attempting to send money to her family in some Asian country; the woman yelling at the manager because the cashier was not pleasant enough for her; the voice over the intercom asking for help that will likely never come. The day is barley over and I already want to block my ears and sit in a corner away from all of the craziness. Then the inevitable call to assist the checkout comes and I have no choice but to go to the loudest place in the store. The yelling mother tries to keep control of her children, as the cashier attempts to tell her how much she owes, another old woman argues that her apples are on sale, and an old man hits on a young female employee. Why expect anything less?
April 8, 2011