Francine - harvest
I Blame the Dutch mpoetess
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Oooh, I like puca's better...


5 People You'd Like To Be Kidnapped By (For Very Important Reasons That Only You Can Solve) And Go on A Wild Car Ride Through The Desert Causing Mischief With, And Even Though It Might Be Scary For The First 18 Minutes, It All Turns Out OK And A Fun Time Is Had By All.

1. zortified. 'Cause you know there'd be nekkid men and philosophy involved.

2. The Doctor (mark vii) and Ace. Time travel! Exploding deodorant cans! Cute alien with inexplicable Scots accent and a penchant for purposely mixing his idioms! Cute wannabe rough!girl whose sekrit shame is that her real name is Dorothy, but who isn't afraid to wear Blue Peter badges on her jacket! And as long as I'm not Ace's male love interest, there's a fairly good chance I won't either die or turn evil.

3. Chance Harper (DB Sweeney) from Strange Luck. He's hot, sweet, puppy-faced, and if I stick close enough, hopefully his amazing powers of good luck will protect me from falling satellites, enraged truckers, or whatever else we might encounter in The Desert TM. Plus he might bring that redheaded waitress with the legs along. Grrrruummm.

4. Joss Whedon. We'd be out in The Desert TM for at least 4 hours before he realized that he only thought he was the one doing the kidnapping. The car would be parked, cold cans of pepsi would be retrieved from the cooler, and there would be a Talk. (TM)

5. The idiot who decided to teach impressionable young grocery baggers that "Paper or Plastic" is a question that should be avoided on pain of death, and that the default answer to the Question That Dares Not Speak Its Name is 'plastic.'

Topics to be discussed on our cross desert spree would include:

"A six pack of 24 oz soda bottles that comes with a built-in handle does NOT need to be put in its own plastic bag"

"Rolling one's eyes is not an acceptable response to 'Could I please have that in paper' after the bagger has shoved the customer's purchases into a plastic bag while the customer was distracted by answering the cashier's question"


"Why 'Uh...we don't got paper...'is not an acceptable answer at any time."

After which I suspect I would kick him out of the car and leave him for the coyotes.

my job is a glamourous job


2002-09-16 08:18 pm (UTC) (Link)

5. The idiot who decided to teach impressionable young grocery baggers that "Paper or Plastic" is a question that should be avoided on pain of death, and that the default answer to the Question That Dares Not Speak Its Name is 'plastic.'

This person actually exists. He tells us that we are running low on paper bags, and that we should therefore make sure that we only give them to those customers who request paper without any prompting.

Re: my job is a glamourous job


2002-09-16 08:26 pm (UTC) (Link)

I knew he wasn't just an urban legend...

C'mon, you can tell me -- does he gove classes in the blank look, followed by put-upon sigh when the customer actually *asks* for paper? Or is that just in my neighborhood.


No, the sad and disillusioning part is when you've been asking for paper for three weeks straight, and you finally realize Kroger isn't *going* to order more paper. It's a hoax. A trick, to keep us coming back...

Re: my job is a glamourous job


2002-09-17 04:59 am (UTC) (Link)

No, no, he doesn't. Unless by "classes" you mean "demonstrations."

At least you only have to endure the blank look on grocery day. It's my coworkers who're administering it, yo, and it's not reserved for the customer.

Also, you may be dealing with some reflexive annoyance. The "rebag this" demographic is pretty limited to old ladies who want their seventy boxed candy bars packaged individually for better weight distribution. You could try rephrasing, or possibly delivering the request in opera.

Re: my job is a glamourous job


2002-09-17 06:25 am (UTC) (Link)

Could be, re rebagging. But it's usually *one* plastic bag, that the bagger has already dumped several items into while the cahsier has distracted me by asking for the discount card I didn't bring with me. And when I ask politely if I could have those items (as well as the 20 still on the belt) in paper... well, the look I tend to get is the same one I get from my cat when I offer her generic store brand catfood. :)

Re: my job is a glamourous job


2002-09-17 08:36 am (UTC) (Link)

Stare at the buisiness end of a conveyor belt for too long, and everyone looks like generic store brand catfood.

You would love me. I'm a dropper. And I forget that one person's requests aren't applicable to everyone, so twelve people get paper bags inside of doubled plastic ones. :)

Re: my job is a glamourous job


2002-09-17 08:57 am (UTC) (Link)

[nod] Yeah, I know the feeling. I was a cashier at Walgreens for far too long, aka several months.

I honestly don't mind people who drop things, or are absentminded or don't *hear* me when I ask for paper, etc. Only people who give me attitude for interrupting their busy day. :)


2002-09-16 08:29 pm (UTC) (Link)

*hands you a cricket bat, just in case The Talk (TM) doesn't ram the point well and truly home*


2002-09-17 02:56 am (UTC) (Link)

See in the UK we only get plastic, no paper and I don't get how anyone can carry the paper bags without them a. ripping, b. falling out of grasp as they have no handles c. be better than a plastic bag.

Please explain as I'm a terribly confused Brit with limited bag choices.

Personally I thought the whole 'paper or plastic' thing was referring to paper=cash, plastic=credit/debit card for payment, doh!


2002-09-17 06:17 am (UTC) (Link)

The paper bags are large and thickly constructed, for one. They also do make paper bags with handles; one of our two major supermarket chains (Marsh) around here has them. We just happen to have one of the other stores (Kroger) on the way home from work, which is why I bitch about them in particular.

But also, we tend (from what I've seen while I was grocery shopping in England) to buy more groceries at a time than you lot -- the supermarket is larger and further away, usually, so it's stock up when you get there so you don't have to go back for another week or so.

The things I don't like about plastic bags (aside from US supermarkets trying to put them on *everything* -- witness complaint about putting things that have their own freaking handle already, being shoved into plastic bags) are:

The plastic is not a renewable resource; the paper is.

The handles of the plastic bags cut off the circulation in my hands when I try to carry the 10 or so that are required to hold what could easily go in four paper grocery bags.

Th plastic bags more easily cause damage to perishable items, and spill much more easily in the car, when they're being transported home.

And, purely a personal one: the plastic is not as useful to me in the home -- the paper ones double as wastebin liners; the plastic are tossed out, or used to carry lunches to work, and there's *far* more plastic bags than I'll ever need as lunchbags.



2002-09-18 01:28 am (UTC) (Link)

Thanks for explaining, its so much clearer now!


2002-09-17 05:01 am (UTC) (Link)

I'd want a full accounting of that Talk™

And a cricket bat play-by-play


2002-09-17 06:05 am (UTC) (Link)

Im more annoyed by the Wal-Mart people who insist on plastic bagging(no paper CHOICE) every individual item with the theory that the mms will leak FAT on the Comet, or the Transformer may copulate with the MEGA pack of Huggies.Why does something IN a plastic bag need top be put IN a plastic bag...and I love when I tell them to just put it all together and they look at me like I am violating 10 kinds of international retailing laws.I really love just taking things out of the bags and leaving the empty bags on the counter.They never know what to do with them...should they thread them back on the metal thing?Throw them away(isnt that bad for plastic trees everywhere?) or just slip them under the counter for the next cashier on duty...most choose the latter.I swear the next time they bag my cough drops separate from my combos I'm going to rip them open and eat them all at the same time and show them how It wont cause irreversible damage.And then Im going to sue them for letting me do it!!!


2002-09-17 06:22 am (UTC) (Link)

Bwahaha. Yes. Witness my bitching about the 6 packs of Pepsi being put in a bag. I fucking kid you not -- you know the kind i mean, right? It's a six pack of *plastic* bottles, attached to each other with *plastic* rings that break about once in never, unless someone's been screwing around with them. And the come with a nice, sturdy *plastic* handle to carry them by. Why oh why would I want them in a bag?

Also? The stores that don't put out plastic bag recycling bins? Deserve every pulling-out-and-leaving-the-bag-on-the-counter they get. Confusion about what to do with leftover plastic bag? Gee! Now y'all know how *we* feel. (Though I do have sympathy for the cashier, who isn't the one who makes the policy decisions about what kind of bags to use, I have very *little* sympathy for the cahsier who doesn't seem to have any *sense* when it comes to packing things, so I end up with 8 more bags than I need.)

Oh Ye Who Has Never Been a Bagger


2002-09-17 09:05 am (UTC) (Link)

As an experienced bagger I can explain some of these gripes:

1. Handled Bottles in Bag - *some people* request/want/expect this so that they can slip the bag handles over their arms and carry more bags than just in their hands

2. Sigh Over Paper - paper bags are a bitch to pack. While they do carry more, they have to be packed in *just* such a way so that things don't get smooshed. With the smaller plastic bags, you can seperate the squooshables (and frozens, etc.) with less hassle and in less time, reducing the amount of time spent getting nasty glares from customers who have more imortant things to do.

3. Small Amounts, Many Bags - OK, I admit to a certain amount of ignaorance on this account. The only thing I can think is that there are guidelines about packing things which, if followed, lead to weird bagging. ie - meat is never to be bagged with other things (risk of infection), frozen never with paper or cardboard pakaged things (so they don't get wet), never foods and non foods (so your bleach doesn't leak on your lettuce), never get too heavy (you know how pissy you get when a bag rips out) and the like.

4. Sigh/Rolling Eyes - what do expect when you hire teenagers! Can you think of a less appropriate group of people for any job involving the word service? They can't handle requests from their peers, they're certainly going to loose it coming from some terminally unhip schmuck at work.

5. "Out of paper" Never a Good Answer - well, sometimes we are. Sorry. :*(

There is a kind of learned helplessness that comes with customer service of any kind. When you start, you try to do everything just right for every customer. After a while of that, you begin to realize you hardly ever manage it, and you stop trying. With maturity, experience and a desire to do a good job (go ahead, try to find any of those in your average grocery store bagger, let alone all three), you bounce back and forth between these two and hope that it evens out to good, if not fanatical, customer service.

NOTE: I understand entirely these frustrations, I experience them too. The previous was not in anyway to try and excuse theses issues, just to give you a glimpse of the other side.

Sarabi (the Queen of Seeing-the-Other-Side)

Re: Oh Ye Who Has Never Been a Bagger


2002-09-17 09:17 am (UTC) (Link)

But I *have* been a bagger -- as a cashier at walgreens, we had to bag as well as everything else, and during back to school sale, and halloween candy sale, we easly filled as many bags per customer as a normal grocery store.

But I get what you're saying -- I can understand completely why it would be a chore for the employee. It's the attitude that comes with, yeah, usually from teenagers, that I could do without. And there's no logic to the way I usually get my multiple plastic bags packed, none of the 'separation for obvious reasons' that would be sensible, as far as I can figure out.

I didn't say "Out of paper" isn't an acceptable answer. "Uh...." long pause "We don't got paper..." isn't an acceptable answer. When they actually mean "I'm not going to check" or "Huh? Paper? What's that?" The shocked look that anybody would even ask for such a thing, followed by a mumbled reply and more shoving of items into plastic before the customer can even ask "Are you out, or do you not carry paper at all anymore?"

Now, granted -- I;m somewhat biased on this paper issue, due to shopping with someone we know, who goes absolutely fucking homicidal with every additional plastic bag she gets handed, gets pissy if *I* don't rememeber to ask for paper for my purchases, and takes that mood out on everyone around her in the grocery line.

*raises eyebrow at maeyan*

Hee -- how's the fanatical customer service thing working out, btw?

Re: Oh Ye Who Has Never Been a Bagger


2002-09-17 11:25 pm (UTC) (Link)

paper bags are a bitch to pack. While they do carry more, they have to be packed in *just* such a way

Sayeth Maeyan, the "Paper not plastic, or die" fanatic:

I was dragged along on god only know how many shopping trips with my mom simply so I could bag groceries! With six- plus mouths to feed we did a LOT of shopping at Cubs. Cubs, which for ANYONE who never had the blessing of knowing Cubs when it kicked major boo-tay was one of the early wholesale-type stores, had the lovely policy of letting the customer bag their own groceries. I learned quick that there was a method to the madness. Especially since I had to carry them from the car as well.


Now, when I put stuff on the belt and ask for paper, I put the stuff up in the order to best bag it - boxes in size order, then cans, then bottles and odd stuff, then soft stuff like bread or bagged items (which should ALWAYS go on top).

So why oh why do they then re-arrange the stuff so that the eggs end up on the bottom, the bread and potato chips in the middle, and the entire bag is "capped" with the stupid frozen mostaciolli box?

And who, by the way, suggested the cashier/bagger respond to the request for paper with "but plastic is recyclable" ?

Once I was woken up at the ungodly hour of 8am on a Saturday by a phone call from a store manager who apologized to me for being out of paper and assured me that if I came in that day I would find they had received a shipment just that previous evening. See? Being fanatical and threatening to go home and fetch my flaming sword of retribution (well, two more payments and it's mine) does pay off sometimes. I just love it when they grovel ^_^


2002-09-17 04:38 pm (UTC) (Link)

see, I always request that my 12 packs of coke be bagged. Why? I can't tell you how many times I've been carrying the box and the little tab that you hold rips, dumping cans aaallll over.

But the cashiers always look at me weird when I ask for a bag. Go figure.


2002-09-18 06:59 am (UTC) (Link)

I can see reasons why people would *ask* for something like that -- and I agree, on the cardboard packs; they drive me nuts.

Just wish I knew how it jumped from individuals aksing on a limited basis, to "everyone wants this" in my area!

well, Harumph.


2002-09-17 11:28 pm (UTC) (Link)

*siffle* Okay, so I'd never go to the desert, but you gotta admit, every car ride with me is "A Wild Car Ride" with you scared for your life. ^_^

Re: well, Harumph.


2002-09-17 11:30 pm (UTC) (Link)

Okay that sounded... not at all like it was intended... I meant that I'm such a bad driver, or at least a terrifying one.

Re: well, Harumph.


2002-09-18 06:57 am (UTC) (Link)

Yes, dear. Which is why you'd be on the list of people I'd like to be kidnapped *with* -- but not by. :)

re: the whole paper vs plastic debacle


2002-09-18 06:53 pm (UTC) (Link)

Dunno if you have stores like this in the States, but in Canada we've got the "Real Canadian Superstore" (there's a Fake Canadian Superstore out there somewhere I guess), and they always expect US to supply our own bags or carrying crates. Or we can buy plastic ones at the till, if we really want. Frankly I like it that way, 'cause cloth bags = less garbage *and* less chance of spillage. However... little people like me should not be permitted to carry the plastic crates when they are filled with heavy groceries, though. That is how accidents happen!

Re: the whole paper vs plastic debacle


2002-09-20 11:00 pm (UTC) (Link)

Sorta - Cubs had paper and plastic bags, but you could also use your own bags and such. They also sold cardboard boxes you could use instead.