Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Pinerangenana Juice


It's 9:01 p.m. I am at Gristides, searching for pineapple juice to put in my protein shake. A four day weekend is coming, so it's time to switch to an all liquid diet. Unfortunately, the closest thing left on the shelf is pineapple orange banana. Christ. No less than two other fruits horning in on my protein shake. Fine. I'll take the stupid pinerangenana crap. It will be better than just water and protein powder.

As I head to the register, I hear some loud, older whiny woman talking on her cell phone. She is heading over to the customer service desk, anticipating an open register there. I follow her, because she has only one item. But, since she is distracted by her call, she's not too quick to react, so I, in my post-gym-supercharged state, take full advantage of this and race back to the only open line, beating her, victoriously.

I should have stayed home. Click Read More to find out why.

Not only does the only customer on line have a full belt of groceries, but, you guessed it, she has food stamps, too. And not even the new "card" type, but the old "paper" type that requires a ton of paperwork and endless waiting. If there is a 10-items-or-less-line, there should be a 10-minutes-or-more-line as well. I will never complain about someone using a credit card to make a $3.78 purchase ever again. The cashier senses my instant frustration and apologizes for the delay.

But, as pissed off as I am at the woman with the foodstamps, the woman behind me is the one who needs to die right now. I don't even have to try eavesdropping because she is so loud. I am able to find out that a) some guy sent a bottle of wine over to the table and b) she and her family got all excited and debated whether or not they should open it. In turning to look back at her, he must have had a few glasses himself before this happened. In a word, "woof." I seriously think about telling her to shut the fuck up.

I want to drop the pinerangenana juice on the floor, step out of line and go home. But no, I will stand here and be stubborn and wait. If I'm going to have a protein shake in lieu of dinner, at least it should taste good going down.

"Customer service is open." I hear from a distance. The social worker/cashier motions for me to make a run for it. Chatty McCellphone is, you guessed it, distracted enough to not hear this right away, so I race over, bumping into her in the process. I don't know how it happened, but there is already a customer there. An old man with a bag of rolls. There are just two and, of course, there is a problem when the old man gives the nasty cashier just a single dollar.

"You need one more dollar," she advises. She might as well just give it to him herself, because it becomes apparent that the old man is either a) deaf, b) suffering from Alzheimer's, or c) faking it. This goes back and forth for about three agonizing minutes. I briefly think of giving the man the dollar, but why? Instead of two rolls, let him buy one. He probably won't be eating them both today and going out tomorrow for another will be good for him, because he probably needs exercise. "You need ONE more DOLLAR!" says the cashier, louder than before.

Now visibly annoyed, she writes $1.74 on a scrap of register tape and slides it towards him. Nothing. Glancing over at the other line, I see that, even though the food stamp girl is gone, there are still at least five people at that cashier. Had I just stayed there, I'd be out the door right now.

Of course, Chatty McCell Phone is still quacking away, oblivious, and this makes me want to kill her even more. I want to grab her and throw her outside under a bus. There is a stop right in front of the store, so this could happen.

"Oh, I can't help you," the cashier whines, sliding the old man's rolls out of the way to take my pinerangenana juice. As she rings it up, I motion to Chatty with my head and say, "Can't she just shut the fuck up?" Chatty, oblivious still, has no idea I'm talking shit about her practically to her face. The cashier smiles, trying to repress her laughter. Maybe I should just order from Fresh Direct next time.

3 comments:

Paynin Diaz said...

You need a portable, backpack flame thrower - bring back the joy of going about town.

Steven said...

Chris, I hope you realize, after this post, I'm slowly falling in love with you...

nikoeternal.com said...

Chris and Steven sitting in a treeeeee....he he arent u the lucky one. Seriously though, u need to start doin yoga again, but then u wont have anything to bitch about anymore lol