Sunday, December 16, 2012

Checking Out the Fast Lane

R.a.n.t. of week 12/16/12
Let's suppose you went to a Nascar race, only to find out the cars in the race were a soap-box derby type, using pedal power. The roar of the cars zipping past replaced with a deafening sound of nothingness from the derby cars. Probably not an event you'd write home about, unless to r.a.n.t. and complain. Even if you were a soap-box derby fan, you'd have to admit compared to the Nascar you were hoping to see, the derby cars were not very speedy. Keep in mind, being speedy is relative to how fast you expect something to go. A snail racing along at 10MPH could hardly be called slow. Why then, do grocery stores put monikers on their 'self-serve checkout' lines such as "Speed Zone" or "Fast Lane", when they are anything but. Have you ever tried using these lanes and actually watched the people in front of you? This weekend I was entertained with a three act show. With four checkouts, only three ever work at any given time. The first customer is a lady who ignores the 12 item limit and proceeds to self-checkout her cartload. I've also noticed the more a person has at the checkout, the slower they move. The next checkout is a lady who has a stack of coupons. I won't bash coupons if they work for you, but most machines require the attention of a checkout clerk. So every coupon the lady scans, the clerk has to come over and approve it. If she's going to be seeing the clerk that much, why not just use a regular lane? The final customer is an older gentleman who has his grandson along. First of all, the gent has a 'not so bright' look on his face. Everything he scans puzzles him and he tries to scan other items before putting the previous into a bag. This sets off the alert and the clerk is called over to find out what the problem is. His grandson keeps telling him to put the item in a bag, but for reasons unknown the grandfather doesn't listen. After a few more items being processed this way, I literally hear him say, "Maybe I should have used the other lane". Sir, you took the words right out of my mouth.


  1. Don't forget---
    Those geniuses vote, too!

    I, being the shy and retiring type that I am, deliberately embarrass those jackasses who failed to pass 1rst grade and violate the 10 item line with more than that...

  2. The exception I have to the 12 item limit is when a person is over by maybe one or two items and by how many people are in line. This weekend I used the 12 item lane with 15 items. But there were 6 lanes, all open, and no one waiting behind me. Sometimes you just have to use your best discretion.