Supermarket Pet Peeves


At the store I go to with an express line, the clerks are drill sergeants. They won’t allow it! :slight_smile:


(Chris D) #62

I’ll admit to doing that when I’m using paper coupons. The store I frequent periodically sends out personalized coupons for things we regularly purchase and I’ve had numerous occasions where the cashier forgets to scan them before totaling the order. If my card is already inserted in the reader it’ll start processing immediately and then it’s too late to deduct the coupons without causing a massive delay for the other people in line (which is something I never want to do).

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It’s one thing to not insert a credit/debit card until the total is rung. It’s wholly different to not have said card (or cash or at least wallet) in hand when payment is imminent.



That happened to me not long ago. I’m in a short line, unload my stuff and notice nothing is happening. I’m assuming price check and willing to stick it out but no, here comes partner with additional purchase.

I’m not a big hurry guy but it’s annoying, just go to the end of the line.

Then there was the time I started unloading at an empty lane and two ladies show up and say we were here first, we had to get something else, huh. I should have told them to stick it but hey, I’m a nice guy. Whatever ladies, help yourself.


(Jimmy ) #65

I just {{sigh}} and say: “I’m retired. I got all the time in the world.” I never mean it though. :unamused:



I forgot to mention it was something like 5 minutes.

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Guess what? I’m heading out to not one but two grocery stores. We’ll see what happens.

I’ve been banned from MY HEB, not by the store but the Wifeacita. We would go after her zoomba on Sunday and I would read a book while she slowly went down every aisle. I would dilly dally around at home too long and she refuses to pick me up.

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I actually ran into a lady who had 300+ dollars worth of groceries in her cart this weekend. She’s constantly trying to figure out how to load this and stuff it in the cart, while the cashier keeps ringing things up. So when it’s time to pay, of course the woman is entirely flustered, isn’t prepared, she has to stare and confirm 3x what the total is, and then she reaches into her purse and whips out her check book. Her check book!!! Dear god…what decade are we in?!



Here in France, it’s still common to use checks to pay in supermarkets.


(John Hartley) #70

I’ve only written one cheque in the last 12 months. And that was only because they were a new trader and hadnt yet set up payments by bank transfer.

About 10 years back , there was a move in the UK to scrap cheques altogether. My local Member of Parliament launched an eventually successful campaign for them to be kept. His basic argument was that cheques were still often used to pay small traders and, indeed, were often used by folk not conversant with more modern technological methods of payment (my elderly in-laws, for example, wouldnt have a clue about how to do a bank transfer, let alone the fact they had no computer access).


(Jimmy ) #71

Our method of payment 99% of the time at a supermarket. Our checks are dated and signed at home. The clerk only needs to run it through the register for validation. As quick a transaction as cash or a card. Oftimes quicker.

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I write one once a month or so and just like you it’s filled out in advance. I’ve seen people with cards insert them several times to get them to go thru and then they have to enter the pin. I usually pay cash and have it ready plus don’t fumble around for change, if I get 87 cents back so be it, I just dump it in the container back home.



The cashier never gives a moment to put change back in a wallet before ringing the next customer. Used to frustrate the hell out of me but I’ve finally given up and just move to an out of the way place on my way out and put the change away.


(Memory) #74

I’ve tried to study the individuals who leave their carts Smack in the middle of the aisle while they hover over the shelves elsewhere.

  1. Mostly dudes. ?? Guys!! Heads up.
  2. Surprising number of women who appear to be in their thirties. Gals: What the what??

This behavior is head-scratching to me. It’s obviously not meant to be offensive.

Situational awareness fail. But why? (I’d like to be compassionate but I’m not. I mutter as I move the cart.)



As an aside . . . . I’ve tried to get previous colleagues to get some funding to do research on this (I’m not in academia anymore . . . ) but if you’re into human behavior - I’ve wanted someone to study where exactly people choose to stop, thus blocking a passage for others (a la this whole shopping cart thing). As a researcher I know anecdotal evidence is suspect for all sort of biases and I’ve never done a real objective “study”.

But - I’m convinced that people stop where there are constrictions in a path - thus making the narrowing even worse for traffic flow through that area. (But of course my bias could be that I notice it more in these situations because it doubles the headache for me). So in grocery aisles, when they put those cardboard display boxes in an aisle (another pet peeve) people are more likely to stop their cart next to - around - at an angle near - those boxes, instead of in a section of the aisle that is fully clear. I think the same thing happens in airports, bus/train stations, etc.

I also think a change in a path’s width triggers people to stop. So at the end of an aisle that joins a larger space - gotta stop in the small space instead of entering the large space. (This one I see at airports/etc a lot).

Anyone want to try to get some grant money and see if I’m right?

I do like grocery shopping as a whole - I have just learned to go with the flow, but it doesn’t mean I don’t still notice and roll my eyes at many of these pet peeves (many of which I agree with btw). So please take my peeves as playful banter - a few people seem to take a few of these a little personally, not my intent.


(Memory) #76

Thimes, you just reminded me of some academic studies I read back in the day. There’s a school of thought based I think in the Netherlands? = Academics studying foot traffic behavior & documenting people’s tendencies to stop in doorways. Mathematicians got involved as I recalled. I think that research influenced architectural design = the necessity to provide plenty of room at elevator landings and major door thresholds to accommodate stoppers. So yes I think you’re right and I think it’s a well documented effect.

PS: Hope my post didn’t offend all the kind and self-aware dudes and women in their thirties among the HOs. I should that I’m getting older and wandering in front of people and lurching all over the place. Mea culpa.)


(Jimmy ) #77

I hope this reply doesn’t offend any others…
Our dogs are stoppers. After taking them on their walks, I used to let them into the house ahead of me. Several years ago I had an incident with them stopping just inside the back door before heading into the kitchen. I, for whatever reason, didn’t notice that they stopped. To avoid tripping over them and hurting either one of them, I threw myself over them and slid across the entryway carpet. I tore the skin off my left from wrist to elbow. Injury took months to heal and left a hideous scar.

Since that day, I enter the house first, and hold the doors open for them–for however long it takes them to decide to proceed.


(Gwenn) #78

I find that it’s also people,that are quite self-involved. Talking on the cell and oblivious to their surroundings.

Once I was next on the check out line and the woman I front of me, who the cashier was ringing up, was talking on her cell. The cashier tried to ask the woman a question, to which the woman replied (I should say yelled) can’t you see I’m on the phone?



I live in a remote area with huge influx of tourists and second homeowners half of the year. In the off-season I do meet friends and neighbors in the grocery store and we do chat but the store isn’t busy. In the summer, it’s a whole other story. Screaming, running out of control children I’m afraid will knock me over. People half dressed from the beach. Huge grocery purchases, sometimes 2 overloaded carriages. Long lines.

We shop in the middle of the week in the middle of a hot sunny day when the stores are relatively quiet.



A display box in the aisle??? What kind of moron does that?