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Monday, July 23, 2007

Please remove your item from the bagging area

Shopping for lunch should not be a chore, but a pleasure.

I had opted for Tesco over Sainsbury's this lunchtime, however, which proved to be a stupid, schoolgirl error. It was traumatic.

Firstly, I embarrassed myself by setting off the alarm when I walked in. Note. I had nothing on my person except my clothes, my purse and a smile. No-one was coming out, no small midget sneaked past me, furtively clutching a Milky Bar. No. I walked in, and alarm bells rang. What a comment about the state of my life: no matter how hard I try, I always make an entrance. And it ain't pretty.

Then I have to trawl through the vegetable counters for my weekly salad purchases, while this little old guy who looked like the incarnation of Mr Magoo kept following me around the veg. stand and smiling every time I looked his way. Short of beating him around the head with a carrot or shoving a squash up his wrinkly nose or stapling his head to a marrow with a pricing gun, there was little I could do except call it a day for fresh fruit and veg and go and hide in the deep freeze under some McCain's chips for a few hours.

Note to Tesco's: Tinned Treacle Pudding is not one of the following: "Tinned soups, vegetables and meats." It is not one of the four main food groups. It belongs to the group: "Bad, Very Bad, Totally Calorific and Cavity-making." Tinned tuna, however, does not qualify for either of those two food groups and therefore does not exist in the world of Tesco employees. "Tuna? Tinned Tuna? Uhhhh...Not Sure..."

Furthermore, putting a small Krispy Kreme counter right next to the weightwatchers yoghurt and dairy section is simply barbarous.

Also, selling "fresh" pomegranate chunks that, when opened, taste like soured vodka that has been left to stand for six days in the heat, beggars belief. The taste - and some of the darn pips - will remain with me for days.

Then to proceed to the self-service checking counter. All goes well until it does not allow me to take my full shopping bag off the "bagging area" and start a new one. "Please place item in the bagging area" it says in a loud woman's voice, over and over and over. Eventually I end up talking to the machine, just as loudly. Yes. I am insane.

Then after I pay, I realise it has not charged me for something worth £5 (that's US$10 and CAN$600,023). So I ask the lady if I can re-do my shop or just pay for that one item at the same bagging counter. She is very helpful and polite - a highlight in that dark Tesco - and I put the order through for that one item. As I go to pay, the automated voice starts up again: "Please put your item in the bagging area. Please put your item in the bagging area. Please put your item in the bagging area."

By now, I am thumping the bagging area and cursing like an old sunday school teacher - vis-a-vis: "Condarn you, you little beggar", "Confounded nuisance" "Dadblamed machine." All the while the same message is booming out: "Please place your item in the bagging area."

Eventually I bang the bagging area so hard the red light starts flashing on the top of the self-service (SERVICE? HA!) area and a voice starts up: "Calling for assistance. Calling for assistance". I pull out my credit card, throw £5 cash at the attendant who has been standing there all the time, and run out of the shop like a thief.

All this for a bleeding garden salad and a lemon yoghurt.

Life sucks


Gorilla Bananas said...

Are you dieting? You already look slim in your pictures, although you may have a big bum for all I know. I think you're getting your lunch from the wrong place.

Old Tarf said...

It seems that the service in Tesco's is as bad now as it was way back when.(when dinosours ruled the earth).

Your regard for honesty and stapling stuff together is a great boon to your self esteem.

Life does indeed suck: esp. if you constantly eat sour Lemons.

Mermaid of Moorgate said...

GB: I'm a mermaid. I don't have a bum. I have a tail. I don't suppose Gorillas swim much, though, so how would you know that?

Old Tarf: The dinosaurs still roam the earth and collect trolleys for Tesco.

Nocturnal said...

The price paid on that one, definitely life in the trenches.

Chin up.


Mermaid of Moorgate said...

Hullo Nocturnal. My chin was up - when I passed the Krispy Kreme stand in sheer determination. But... I now know it is there... worth going over the top for...

Kieran said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kieran said...

Sounds like it gave you a good work out, and for free.

"Unexpected item in the bagging area."
I love this phrase. Slightly worrying though that Tesco have sucessfully built robots that come with their own little expectations.

It won't be long before they build an army.

Fat Sparrow said...

"Furthermore, putting a small Krispy Kreme counter right next to the weightwatchers yoghurt and dairy section is simply barbarous."

But very funny.

Mermaid of Moorgate said...

Fat Sparrow: It is, but was it intentional? Do Tesco workers have that sort of ironic humour?

Kieran: Indeed. Every little helps... to rid the world of undesirables. Down with Morrison's army. Kill all corner shop resistance.