The warden called me yesterday while I was out in the territory and ask me to stop at a Wal-Mart. She needed a clip for her phone since hers had broken. No problem, I drive by them all the time, won’t take more than a minute or two.
Well, I pull into the parking lot of a SUPER CENTER and start looking for a parking space. (My goal in life is to find the first non-disabled parking spot close to the door!)
“Wow”, I think to myself, “so many cars out here the place must be full of people”.
I finally find a parking spot at the end of row Z, almost a half mile from the door! Oh well a guy needs exercise!
Finding the needed part is not too much of a hassle and I head for the check out line. 50 check out lanes and every one of them with a line. Then I see it, “Express Lane, 10 items or less, cash only” with only 3 people in line. I nearly run to the lane but a guy wheels a cart in front of me.
I look at his cart and it has to have at least 30 items in it! I give him the “raised eyebrow” look, then look back at the sign, “10 items or less.”
He looks at the sign, looks as his cart, looks at me and SHRUGS!
OK, I am NOT a violent man, so I don’t say a thing. I merely stand behind him and wait patiently. I am SURE the checker will tell him that he has to move to a different lane when he gets there. All the others in the EXPRESS lane have the proper amount of items like myself!
I watch the lady at the check-out reach into her purse and pull out a checkbook!
I look back at the sign, “cash only”!
But being the patient man I am (and non-violent), I don’t say a word. I lean on the candy rack and sigh heavily though, so she is aware of my distaste for her lack of obedience to “the rules”! She senses my displeasure, but continues to write. (I swear I could write a novel in less time than this woman takes to write a check!)
Finally we move forward one spot.
The Express Lane checker now picks up the item this next gentleman has laid on her counter and tries to scan it. No familiar beep. She tries again, different angle, still nothing. She works the thing back and forth, changing angles. Still nothing.
The Express Lane checker now reaches up and pulls on the chain that starts her light blinking which is to summon a manager. Being the patient (and non-violent) man that I am, I simply begin to browse the candy rack. After all, she is doing her job. The light continues to blink. Finally a manager shows up, but not before I have read all the nutritional labels on the 40 different candy varieties.
We move forward one more spot.
The next woman lays her red top (only one item) onto the counter and proceeds to ask if this is available in blue. The Express Lane checker reaches for the “summon manger chain” again!
Being the patient (and non-violent) man that I am, I simply help out by hollering “We need a manager down here!”
The manager arrives much quicker this time, but with security in tow. I am drumming my fingers on the candy rack and stare eye to eye with the security guard.
The lady is helped, receives her top in blue and we move forward another spot.
We are now up to the guy with the 30 items. I wait for the Express Lane checker to send this guy to Wal-Mart purgatory, the “normal” check lane. She doesn’t! She begins to check his items as he places them on the belt.
I am appalled and vow to write Helen Walton, Lee Scott and John Glass a personal letter about this breech of “the rules”. The security guard is still standing there, looking eyeball to eyeball with me, his hand resting on his service revolver.
This Express Lane checker has apparently NEVER been to the “scanning school”. The first item (out of 30) will not scan! Before the Express Lane checker can even reach for the “summon manager chain”, I holler “Manager”!
I see the security guard flip the strap on his service revolver.
I am now freely eating selections from the candy rack and daring anyone to say something.
Each of the 30 items are scanned and rescanned and scanned again, with the manager helping.
Finally, after only 30 minutes in the “Express Lane, 10 items or less, cash only” lane, I approach the belt!
Just as I lay my ONE, single item on the belt and reach for my “cash only” billfold, I over hear the manager tell the Express Lane checker, “you have really done well for your first day. It’s time now for your break.” And then she lay a “Lane closed” sign on the belt in front of my ONE item.
I hate Friday the 13th