Sunday, November 28, 2010

YAY, I finally got one ! ! ! !

I knew if I waited long enough I'd get a nut job.

I was on express the other day and had about three people in line at the time. The second one was antsy and hopping from one foot to the other. She's getting frustrated with my customer who is using the debit machine. Our machines are slow and she's going "why is this taking so long?"

I gave her a look and she shut up. For 5 seconds. She starts encroaching on my customers space and really starting to bug me. Finally, its her turn and I ring in her ice cream. They were ice cream novelties and they have tax on them.

"I don't have enough money. Why are they so much?" I explain to her that there is tax on them.

"I wasn't told there was tax on them. I'm not paying it."

Okay, then you can't have them.

"Well, why do I have to pay tax." I explain that they are novelties, and NOT regular ice cream. (This is just the way our taxes are set up. If its considered food, like ice cream, then no tax. If it is a 'treat' then you get taxed.)

"Well, I'm not getting them. I'll go get something else." Okay, could you put these back please?

I void off her order and carry on. Five minutes or so later she is back. By now I have about 4 people (she's #5). Third in line is a young lady with more than eight items. Big deal, I can get them through fast and I am not in the mood to chase her out. Besides it would take as much time to clear her out as to check her through.

Well, Miss Ansty Pants starts saying "this is 1 - 8 you know." And "you should get out of the line" and "That's not fair."

Now, none of the other customers could care less, and most knew me. I told her that it was okay and to leave her alone. She says "Well, I was in here with 9 items and they chased me out of the line." I just gave her an over the glasses glare.
Finally one too many comments and I told her in no uncertain terms and in a pretty loud voice: "This is MY register" and stared her down.

That did it. She came through, paid and left. I have had this woman before and she has been a problem before. Better not try it again.

The crazy cat lady was the same way. Always pan handling in the neighbourhood but at least she was buying treats for her cat. She usually has three to four pouches and when asked to pay, lays this pile of change on the tray. It is hardly ever enough. Anybody she goes through ends up arguing with her about the fact that she doesn't have enough money, which ones does she want?

One day she came through me and she tried to bargain the price down. I just took the $5.00 bill out of her hand and gave her the change for her items. Since then, she either comes through me with enough change or goes to someone else and has the money. SO I guess she learned.

* * * * *

Another customer one time was asked if she needed assistance for lottery. The first couple of times I asked her she looked at me like I was an alien, then finally says: "Yeah" She had her two young boys with her.

I said you meant "yes, please, didn't you"?

She didn't know what to do. I didn't see her for a couple of weeks and the next time she came in she came through my line and seemed very uncomfortable about having to face me. I acted like I didn't know her and treated her politely. She has been a changed person since. She is always pleasant. And the boys are nice too.

* * * * *

As my husband always says to me "You can't fix the world". I say, "Yes, but I can sure as hell fix my corner of it."

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

How do you tell when they are REALLY crazy?

Okay, so I was working a 10:30 - 2:30 shift and it was pretty early into it. A lady comes through I have seen several times in the store. She has always been quiet but pleasant and is around 50 - 60 (?) years old.

She asked me if I have seen the tabloids and whether they are talking about the stars death list (?). "No" says I,

"And you won't, either!"

And the next thing I know I am hearing about how sonar is going to be the ruin of everything, she has studied astrology AND astronomy so she knows things.

"Did you know that Michael Jackson was in Scary Movie 3 and where is he now?"


"Yes, and the movies that Mel Gibson has done? Well first he did the Passion of the Christ and then Apocalypto. You saw what happened to Indonesia and then Haiti. A volcano and an earthquake."

"Really? (help? somebody? anybody? Please help?)"

"And There was a movie about space travel and life . . . ."

"Oh, you mean Forbidden Planet? That starred Leslie Nielson!" (idiot, shut your mouth)

Her eyes light up! ! ! !

"Well, you know, you should watch it again. There are lots of messages in that."


"Yes! And have you seen the Rocky Horror Picture Show? Well, you should. It has a lot of predictions too."

"And they have been sending sonar waves out to outer space and what pictures are coming back? This is what they are seeing. Hitler!"

Why don't I have another customer? Please?

10 minutes she talked to me about this stuff. TEN MINUTES! ! ! In the meantime I've smartened up and decided not to tell her that sonar is used underwater. I did find out though, that it is the sonar waves that are destroying everything and Mel Gibson has to quit making movies. Oh, and that stuff they talk about on Coast to Coast? ( a strange radio show that covers everything from the Cold war to tracking Sasquatch). Its all true, especially the alien parts.

Are you confused? ? ? ? ?

Yeah? Well try being in my shoes the next time she comes through. Because, guaranteed she is going to think of me as someone she can talk to and confide in.

Gawd, let it please just be because of the full moon.
Anyone know a place I can take 'rude' lessons???

Friday, November 19, 2010

Another crappy excuse . . . . . .


The reason I haven't been writing as much is because there have not been any interesting characters at work. (Please see the last part of this post for a teaser). Even the new employees are, for the most part, 'normal'.

Of course this week has been a little different as there are exams going on, so a lot of them took the time off for that. The nice thing is the ones that didn't, seem to be mostly the ones that actually know how to work!!! What a treat that has been.

Oh, and management finally figured out that we were chasing customers away by not having enough cashiers on, especially over the supper rush. I have actually been getting some shifts on express too. The interesting thing is that several customers have mentioned how nice it is to see me on express again as the ones that they've been using are too slow. They were actually at the point of not coming to our store anymore because of the inconvenience of it being slow and not enough cashiers.

* * * * *

I have written to head office yet again about the possibility of them opening a store in an area where I feel it is really needed. There is an area coming from Burlington to Hamilton where you go more than 12 kilometers without running into a grocery store. The interesting thing is that going the other direction you have two stores within about 5 kms. Then, near our store you have three grocery stores within less than 4 kilometers. The place where I think a store would fit is about half way and right near a new exit off the 403 west bound. This exit has been sorely needed for a long time because if there is an accident out on the highway you were stuck for a long time. There was no escaping the lineups. Now, with this new exit, you can leave the crowded highway and go along Plains Rd. With the added traffic that will bring I can see a need for a store there.

Also there used to be a large department store that had a small grocery section and when it closed down all the people in the area had to go somewhere else for the bread and milk.

AND ! ! !
On that very spot they are in the process of building more condos! ! ! ! All those extra potential customers! You're still going to have loyalty to your 'favourite' store, but the convenience of a store on your doorstep is very hard to resist.

* * * * *

We have recently ( October 21st) acquired a new puppy. Because of the interesting dynamic of this situation, I have started another blog about the exploits of Sidney and Emma. There is a link on this page for it. So with three different blogs, there should be something new on at least one of them.

* * * * *

Please keep checking back, because two days ago I had a doozy of a customer and when I figure out the best way to write about it, it will be added. Also I don't want them to get the sonar or Mel Gibson after me.

All right, Mel Gibson is okay, but not the sonar.

Are you intrigued yet?

Friday, November 5, 2010

All Right, Already

Okay, so I haven't posted in a while. But there hasn't been too much interesting happen. Until last week.

First off, we have a few new hires that are proving to be ....... interesting!?

I love (insert sarcasm) people that come in, work four or five shifts and start talking about how fast they are. Lets try to get accuracy before we even try to get some speed. Its important to treat the customer well. Its not to be talking to other cashiers (unless its for help) or, EVEN WORSE, to walk away from the register to go the the service desk to ask some one something that could have been done with a white phone!!!!!

Unless you have specifically gone to do something at the customer's request, stay at the register. Or if you can't get an answer for a price check ask the customer if they want you to go check it yourself, and do it in a timely fashion! ! !

Plain and simple.

* * * * *

And another thing, we are supposed to take the last bag around to put in the buggy. Okay. This means that unless you have an empty register between you and the next cashier, you are going to probably be disturbing a customer.

That's not great but, for crying out loud, excuse yourself if you have to get past them. You should NEVER, EVER try to just push past. I don't care who you are or who they are. You don't push past!!!!! You ask them if you can slip by, you say excuse me may I get by or whatever is appropriate. I am so very fed up with our cashiers that do that. Even some of the more experienced (3 to 4 year) ones seem to not have manners sometimes.

* * * * *

So last week I had this lady with a huge buggy load of groceries. She also had her son (12 years old?) and her daughter (7 ?) with her. Well the Mum realized she had the wrong milk and asked the son to go exchange it. ATTITUDE right away. "I don't know where it is" "why do I have to do it". Meanwhile the Mum keeps asking him to do it and he keeps ignoring. I finally got pi**ed myself and told him he better be back by the time I get to the end of the order. With that he gives me a sullen look and wanders off to get it. I keep on checking and filling bags which are now piling up on the end of my register. He returns to say there isn't any left. The Mum didn't buy that and goes to see for herself. She comes back with the right milk and says to him they must have put it out right after you looked, Spawn From Hell (or whatever his name was).

So now he's standing by the buggy and just playing with his hand held toy. I have no room for any more bags so I put a few in the buggy. He just looks on, like it's his duty to be a sullen little snot that needs a smack on the ***. Meanwhile the daughter had knocked something off by accident and picked it all up and apologized to me as she told me what she'd done.

Now the Mum spots this broom thing that she needs and hands it to me to scan in. I do so and then go to put it in the buggy but the little heathen is in the way. I told him to watch his head and swung it right above him into the buggy. I just gave him one of my best "if you were my kid" looks and he started to put a few bags in the buggy. The Mum seemed to be totally clueless as to what a little pri*k he was. Either that or she had given up. She didn't seem to notice the daughter being the opposite of the spawn.

Or didn't care! I don't know.

Even the next few customers in line were talking about this kid and all of them wanted to have a go at him.

I wonder if his name was Damien??

* * * * *

I finally got a day time shift (by that I mean something that I got to go HOME in the daytime) this past week. It was nice. I get to see a lot of the older customers and they were obviously glad to see me. Especially when I got on express for a bit. Anyway, next week I am back to the late afternoon crap again.

Its not that I necessarily don't like that shift, its just that I keep getting stuck working with slowpokes and/or not enough other cashiers. Its a hard time of it either way, because I tend to draw a lot of customers to my register when they see how bad the other lines are. Some nights we have customers so deep you can't see the front end for people.

At least last week the finally gave us one more cashier. It helps a little; but if its two new people then its equal to one regular employee.

* * * * *

One last thing I did to a new cashier yesterday. Not on purpose, although it turned into a good learning opportunity if he was paying attention. The customer was about to buy four of an item that was going to go on sale the next day. I decided to let him know that he could save a further $2.00 EACH by waiting one day. He was very appreciative and the cashier then had to void off the four items. that led to him needing a managers key because of the large amount voided.

See, if he had taken the time to look at next week's flyer he would have known that and scored brownie points with the customer.

Sort of like I did.