The overly helpful employee
You just left the office and only need a few items from the store to make dinner. After a long day at work, you’re hoping to quickly find your grocery items and get home to your sweatpants. As you head to the salad dressing aisle, you’re quickly scanning every item for your favorite avocado ranch dressing, when an employee stocking the shelves with mustard seems like he might make eye contact with you if you even so slightly glance in his direction. You keep your eyes glued to the shelves, hoping to eventually find the avocado ranch so you can escape the possibility of having to socialize. Your luck has run out, however, as the friendly employee inevitably asks, “You doing alright today?” You smile and politely reply, “Yes, thank you,” hoping to end the interaction. Unfortunately for you, he is in a chatty mood and starts asking about where you work and what you’re making for dinner. After answering his questions, he decides to discuss his daughter’s career aspirations and all of the colleges she is applying to. Time is ticking, however, and you can’t focus on the details of what the employee is telling you because you’re busy trying to hide the fact that you don’t care from showing up on your face.
The store snacker
What would a trip to the store be without buying a new package of Stroopwafels to enjoy with your coffee in the mornings? How else would you pretend you are on a European vacation every morning instead of waking up in Clemmons? After escaping the talkative mustard stocker, you fervently head to the cookie and snack cake aisle in search of your beloved breakfast snacks. Lo and behold, you spot your Stroopwafels on the shelf (which is a relief because they frequently sell out), but a large man wearing a basketball jersey is opening a package of Milano cookies to munch on while he shops. While you’re irritated that the man is eating cookies that he hasn’t even purchased, you find yourself fighting the urge to do the same (you feel a bit peckish, after all).
The aisle blocker
The last item on your list is on the baking goods aisle. As you roll your cart to the aisle, you see a woman and her shopping cart standing in front of the flour and blocking you from reaching your target – a graham cracker pie crust. As you inch closer and closer to her, you hope she realizes she’s clogging the aisle, but she doesn’t. You can’t understand how anyone could be so inconsiderate. You despise confrontation and fight the urge to retreat but mutter a quiet, “Excuse me” instead. Surprised, she turns her head and looks at you with no expression on her face. Without apologizing or even smiling, she slowly rolls her cart away from the middle of the aisle so you can pass.
The cashier who’s not in a hurry when you are
Every item on your list is in your cart, and you’re finally ready to check out and head home. You find the cash register aisle with the shortest line and stake your claim. Soon enough, you begin to realize why this is the shortest line, as the cashier is moving at the speed of a snail. As you watch her spin through what might as well be a Rolodex of produce codes to ring up white peaches for the customer in front of you, you begin to lose patience. It takes every amount of self-control in your being to not jump in and start scanning items yourself. You look around for other lines that might have freed up while you’ve been wasting away in frustration, but it looks like you are committed to having your groceries bagged by a sloth.
The oblivious pedestrians
After surviving your cash register fiasco, your heart rate begins to slow down and you load your groceries into your car. Just as you think your nightmare of a grocery store trip has ended, you put your car in reverse and check your rearview mirror, only to find a mother and her toddler blocking your way out of your parking space as she ties her toddler’s shoe. Relieved that you actually checked your mirrors before backing up, you can’t help but wonder what you did in life to deserve this toddler’s shoe coming untied right behind your car out of all the other vehicles in the parking lot, and also wonder why the toddler isn’t wearing velcro shoes. At that moment, you decide that you’re having your groceries delivered from now on.