Monday, September 8, 2008

Grocery Shopping Sagas

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you know that I had issues with the Giant Eagle where I used to live. Strange, scary customers, unbelievably rude cashiers, a very limited selection, and tons of unnecessary crap jamming the already too small aisles, were just a few of my gripes. I ask you, who buys their Steeler gear at a grocery store?!? How about a lawn chair? Weirdos.

Come to think of it, there was an incident at a Giant Eagle I shopped at years ago. At the time, I was single, had an extremely depressing job, and was smack dab in the process of grieving for Doug. I was depressed, stressed, and looking for a fight. Back then, I only shopped once a month, so my cart was overflowing. I found an aisle with only one person ahead of me, and started putting my stuff on the conveyer. As I plunked down the last item, the cashier looked at me and in a very bored tone remarked, "I'm closed now".

"I'm sorry. Did you just tell me you're CLOSED? After you watched me put all this on here?" (me waving my hands wildly)

"I didn't notice you".


"No, I'm closed now" (Then she.walked.away.)

I could just about feel the steam coming off the top of my head. I started loudly complaining to customers within earshot. I made a nice little spectacle of myself, and then I left the store in a huff. (Yes, the items were still there). When I got home with no bags, my roommate said, "I thought you went grocery shopping!?" Still in lunatic mode, I screamed, "I DID!!!" Then, I threw stuffed animals against the wall for 20 minutes. "Good Lord, next time, I'll go", she muttered.

Since moving, I was anxious to find a new Giant Eagle, maybe one I actually wouldn't dread going to. I'm sure you are wondering why I don't shop somewhere else. Fuel perks - I love fuel perks. Anyway, there are two fairly close to our new house. My husband insisted that the one is much closer, so I went there last week.

At first I thought I had finally found it. Any store that has the diapers and toddler food in the same aisle as the candy completely understands my needs. But then, I started to notice them. More weird people. Have aliens landed in Pittsburgh, because I swear, people get stranger and stranger around here. I saw a woman wearing her boyfriend's shorts, which were probably 2 sizes too loose for her boyfriend let alone her. She had his belt on too, but still had to HOLD her pants up as she walked around the store. If she had to reach for something high, I was gonna get a full view of her panties.

When I went to leave, there were only 2 aisles open - one regular and one express. Two aisles?! Insanity. The whole time I was waiting in line, the guy bagging groceries was doing a one man routine. Think Robin Williams, but without the funny. "Hey, somebody wants cookies! Better grab some milk! What? No milk? HAR HAR HAR HAR".

Okay, on to Giant Eagle Number 2. Hallelujah! It is huge, with a 24 hr pharmacy, a dry cleaners, a really nice flower section, a place to drop off your kids for babysitting while you shop, people giving out samples all over the store, and friendly cashiers.

When it was my turn, the cashier looked at Dylan in the cart, and asked, "I'm just curious, what aisle did you pick him up in?"
"The weekly specials - thank God it wasn't a buy one get one free deal"
(Laughing) "Hey, have you ever watched that show, Jon and Kate Plus 8?"
"The show that makes everyone feel better about their life? Yea, it's hilarious. Did you see the one where she yells at him for breathing? Blah, Blah, Blah".

This whole exchange may seem unimportant to some, but for someone like me who was used to only being grunted at, "Haf a nice day", which sounded oddly like, "I hope you die", it was BIG. I think I skipped out of that store.


JCK said...

I try not to laugh at your pain, sometimes, but you won't let me...

Finding THE grocery store is KEY. And one with friendly service is the top! Just as long as they can check you out quickly as they hit you with their goofball humor.

Anonymous said...

I have found that since becoming a mom it really is the little things in life that make it better - including finding a great grocery store!

Burgh Baby said...

I drive an extra five miles to go to a Giant Eagle that isn't full of weirdos and has never had someone shot in the parking lot for stealing sausage. That might counteract the benefits of Fuel Perks, but I don't care. I need to be able to steal sausage without violence ensuing.

Jonny's Mommy said...

It is odd how some grocery stores just give off that "run for your life crazy people work here" feel.

And on Jon and Kate -- yes, Jon can do no right I do believe.

I like the show, but man...these people are roaring toward a justified divorce one day, I swear!

Great post and just so funny. I loved the way you ended it!