The Grocery Store Chamandments

19 Aug

Anyone have anxiety issues?  I’ve known for a long time that I have anxiety issues.  To many I probably seem like a laid back person (or maybe not and that’s just the vibe I’m desperately trying to give off, but then get anxious about giving off the wrong vibe, thus perpetuating my cycle of craziness?  and no one is fooled?) but I truly have some issues with places such as the grocery store, where there are a cornucopia of items to choose from.  I don’t know if my issue is the amount of items, thus decisions, available or if it’s the combination of my having a list, coupons, calculator, and trying to navigate my buggy through aisle after aisle of options and stupid people?  For some reason I can break out in a sweat at Kroger like it’s my job.  I actually love grocery shopping, thinking about all the yummy things I can prepare and get really excited about trying new dishes or even oldies but goodies.  And I’m perfectly fine when I manage to have a weekday off and go during the day when the store is much less busy.  Other than the occasional screaming child, it’s a perfectly lovely experience.  All the produce is stocked neatly and I never encounter an empty shelf of a needed item.  I think it’s my trying to be a polite and considerate shopper that stresses me out.  Because I am acutely aware that others don’t always share my zeal for grocery store etiquette.  Maybe I was ‘raised right’ or I just intuit certain behaviors when in public.  My Mam was a stickler for manners, and my sister and I always had on clean clothes, had taken a bath, and had our hair fixed before we left the house.  We may have come back looking feral but we always left tidy.

I’ve noted a few things at recent grocery store trips that I’d like to address.

The Grocery Store Chamandments:

1)  Please wear appropriate clothes and be bathed.  I’m embarrassed to even have to tell you this but apparently some of us, and by us I mean you, aren’t practicing good hygiene.  There’s nothing like standing in line with someone who smoked a pack of Marlboro Red’s in their air conditioning-less vehicle on the way here from Timbuktu.  Long ride huh?  How bout ya get that together before you peruse each and every aisle leaving your stink wafting through the air?

And ladies, I understand that we are obviously the superior sex and in being so, we over extend every imaginable part of our lives, and have way too much on our already full plates, and making an impromptu trip to the store may mean that you have on something less than grocery shopping appropriate.  Such as a tiny workout top with tiny matching shorts, so small that your gynecologist could easily give you a clean bill of health when you bend over to get an item on the bottom shelf.  And I get that.  But you ladies who do this, and are on the hunt for a man at the grocery store?  Please do not bend over at the waist right in front of my husband while you are unloading your buggy onto the conveyor belt.  I know he’s cute and way too nice to tell you this, but that isn’t gonna get you a husband, it’s gonna get you something that penicillin can’t get rid of or get you pregnant, and it makes you look desperate. 

2)  Don’t stand so close to me.  Listen, if you can tell me how long it’s been since I had my teeth cleaned (always less than 6 months thank you very much) then you had better give me 50 feet and back that thang up!  You will not get out of here any faster if you keep within two inches of my heels as I stand and wait on the cashier to complete my transaction.

3)  And about those lovely grocery store staff.  Would it kill you to bend your lips to smile at me or return my greeting of ‘hello, how are you?’  Mr. “I’m Surly and Tormented and I Want the World to know it!” I’m talking to you!  And when I say ‘Thank You’ for bagging my groceries please reciprocate with a ‘You Are Welcome’ instead of ignoring me.  I truly do appreciate your bagging my groceries, even though you obviously have had no training whatsoever in doing so.

4)  Please do not, under any circumstances, put my bread with my jar of pickles.  I try my darndest to keep that bread intact throughout my shopping excursion, and one careless move you can dent my loaf all to heck so that I’ll be eating mini sandwiches all week.  Please do not compromise my otherwise pristine loaf of bread by putting it in a bag with heavy items, or with any items for that matter.  Also put all refrigerated items together, frozen items together, cans together, and toiletries together.  This makes unloading my haul much easier and more pleasant.  Also?  Please do not feel the need to comment on my purchases if you are doing to make fun of me.  In fact, do not feel the need to comment on them at all.  Ever hear about ‘If you have nothing nice to say, do not say anything at all?’  Well now you have so shut your pie hole about my love of organic protein packed bars and how you can’t believe anyone actually east those, um kay?

5)  Attention shoppers we have a slug on aisle 5.  Slugs are those shoppers who are either killing time or have no clue what they want.  They just amble along, totally ignoring the unspoken rule of pulling your cart to the side of the aisle if you will be more than a couple of seconds in choosing an item while you are left to just follow them in their wake, hoping at the end of the aisle you’ll have a chance to zip by them and burn dust and make them eat your rubber.  I don’t always know which brownie mix or bean type that I want, so I pull my cart to the side, out of the way, and stand back with my cart, unless I need to scrutinize the item for some reason, until I make my selection.  I then move back into the aisle and continue on my merry way. 

Also-Wal Mart shoppers, take note of the above Chamandments, as they are applicable to any public shopping, even if for motor oil and Doritos.

Over and out!

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