Monday, August 25, 2014

The Trials Of A Self Check Attendant

7 a.m. Two out of six machines are down. CRAP. Two out of six machines, and it's Sunday. Shoot me now.  Take the few moments of boredom and no lines to clean the 4 working self check stations. No sir, that one's down, there an out-of-order sign right on it. Use this one.
7:30 a.m.: Dry ice. Dry ice. It's okay, it's not busy yet. I can handle the combination locked - don't touch it with your bare hands or you'll burn yourself, I'm wearing gloves for a reason here, please, hands out- dry ice. Yes, I know you need help too, person on the other machine. As soon as I'm done with this dry ice, I'll be there.
8:30 a.m. One of the machines is out of every type of coin we have. Fill it before lines get crazy. Unlock three people's machines while filling out the coin order slip. No - self check does not do money orders. No, I can't ring up your order for you; we have regular checkstands for that. No, you can't buy that seedless whole watermelon for the price of a personal watermelon. No. No. No. No. Coin order slip filled. Dry ice. No, I can't ring up your order for you. Customer service is open now, you can get a money order there. Coin order delivered to self check, start filling machine. Instant line. These people can smell when I'm filling money, I swear, and of course, now there is only 3 working self check stations while I am working on the one. Yes, I can approve your beer. Yes, I can unlock your station. Yes, I can tell you how to do that. (Shit, I have to fill this money so I can get this back open.) SHIT! Gotta fill this money. DRY ICE!!!! Please, God, no. I mean, sure, I can get that for you. (Why is the self check in charge of the damned dry ice?!?!)
Thumped on the shoulder while getting dry ice. WHY are you touching me? I will be there as soon as I'm done with this customer. Why is your station not letting you scan? Have you bagged the last item you scanned? No, you took all the bags off the bagging station? Well, that'll do it. 
9:00 a.m. Thank God for my break. 
9:15 a.m. Back to work. No I can't ring your order for you. No, you have to go to customer service to get a refund. No, it's around 15 items allowed. You have a full cart. You can't scan? Took all the bags off the bagging station? That'll do it. No, those aren't onions. Those are peaches. They cost more. 
9:30 a.m. What's with the dry ice? 4 bags? No, it's .98 a pound, not .98 each. No, it comes in about a 10 lb bag, give or take. No, I can't cut exactly a pound. Yes, I can break off a piece, no I can't make it exactly a 1 pound piece. Why? They didn't give me any way to do that. I throw it on the floor to break it, open it up, and give you a piece. No, don't stick your hands in. Dry ice will burn you; I'm wearing gloves.  No, I can't ring your order up. Why in God's name are people writing checks here? Do that with a regular cashier. No, the machine can't take your check. I'll have to suspend your order, take you to my podium, and pull your order back up so I can take your check. Yes, if you have debit, please use it. No, I can't access your pin. No, I can't see what you type. I'm not looking. Yes, I can get you dry ice. (Damn shitting-ass dry ice. Why can't they at least give us a key lock? Stupid combination's a pain in the ass.)
10 a.m. Lines. Shit. Lines. Only 4 machines. God, everyone needs to be unlocked. STOP TAKING YOUR GROCERIES OFF OF THE BAGGING STATION. If they don't fit, you have too many. The sign right-freaking-there clearing says: About 15 items. 50 is too many. No, I can't refund that. Customer service is right that way, they can fix that for you. No, I don't know what's wrong with the coffee machine. Or the coke machine. The Redbox is outside. No, that's not peanuts sir, those are cashews. What's the difference, you ask? Cashews cost more. When you ring one item up on a station, and you move to another station, sir, I have to close down the first station until I can get a supervisor over here to approve the voided order. Oh, it wouldn't scan anymore? Did you bag the first item you scanned? No? That'll do it. 
10:30 a.m. Effing dry ice. What do you mean, you just wanted to look at it? It's dry ice, not the Sistine Chapel. No, I can't do a money order. No, you can't take your bags off of the bagging station; it locks the station up. Yes, you still have to give your ID for alcohol. Doesn't matter if it's self check, you still get carded. Yes, I really need your ID. NICE TRY 20 YEAR OLD ASSHOLE. No beer for you. DRY ICE?!?! Are you gonna buy some, or are you just taking a tour?
11 a.m. Thank you, LORD! It's lunch time. I'm leaving. I'm leaving. I wanna see my daughter. Why? She won't ask me for dry ice, that's why. 
11:30 a.m. *whimpering* I'm back. It's okay. It's okay. No, I can't refund that, customer service is right down there, they can take care of that for you. No, I don't know what's wrong with the coffee machine. No, you can't take your bags off of the bagging station until you've paid. I just told you not to do that. Yeah, it's locked. Holy crap, stop touching me, people. I can see you, but there's only one of me. I'll be there as soon as I finish with the current customer. No, that's Dasani water. Store brand is cheaper. It has to be redone. No, you put two items in that bag and only scanned one. Yes, that does lock the system. The bagging station is a scale; it knows when you put too much weight on there. The Redbox is outside. Your kid can't sit on the bagging station, sir. Yeah, it's locking up because your kid is on the bagging station. Holy crap, dry ice? WHY?
12 p.m. Please, please leave all your bags on the bagging station until you are done. No, I can't ring up that order for you, we have several checkers, however, that will be happy to do that for you. What do you mean, I'M NOT DOING ANYTHING. You can't ring up those bulk Jelly Bellies as assorted wrapped candies, sir. No, they aren't the same price. Highest priced candy rung as lowest price candy does not make my boss happy. Fine, if you don't want it anymore, I'll take it. No, please don't touch me. I'm see you, don't touch me. I was voiding items off of an order, as soon as I finished I was coming. I did say, "I'll be there in a minute." No, I can't ring your order for you. Yes, I can tell you how to ring your produce on your own. No, those aren't regular bananas, those are plantains. They cost more, yes, but they are still plantains. Ma'am, your kid can't sit on the bagging station. She's not hurting anything? Is your machine locked? Yes? That's because your kid is sitting on the bagging station, which is a scale. 
12:30 p.m. Return of the dry ice. Oh, you were just looking? When I have a line wrapped around the front of the store and only 4 working self check stations? Sure, why not. No, I can't do refunds. Redbox is outside. Yay! The coffee guy is here to fix the coffee machine! No, I can't ring your order. No, that's way too many items. Oh, your gonna ring them all up anyway. Yes, I enjoyed unlocking your machine over and over and over again because you had too many items. It was awesome. Seriously? You're coming to self check with a coinstar slip? OH HOLY SHIT! I have to chase the lady with the unpaid $57 order into the parking lot, because she DIDN'T PAY. Bring her back in to pay, then deal with two customers who accuse me of running out of the store because ' I didn't want to do my job', get price check on 24 piece deli chicken. No, you can't take the bags off of the bagging station until you are done. Customer service is that way. Yes, I can approve your alcohol; yes, I need to see your ID first. 
1p.m. Get price check on coffee creamer. Price is wrong; fix price for customer. Customer demands to know what will be done to punish the person who put in the price wrong. Demands name. Gets mad when I won't give a name (honestly, I don't know how pricing works, so I don't know what to tell him anyway). Looks pointedly at my name badge. "I'll see you, Marie." Ummm, okay. I'll be here. Dry ice, of course. Please, ma'am, don't get my attention by grabbing my shoulder. No touch-y no feel-y, please. Lines. Chaos. Locked self check stations as far as the eye can see. No, I can't ring your order at my podium. I know all the self check stations are full, but I still can't ring your order here. Tell a woman I can't process a return at self check, and point customer service out to her only to have her scream, "But that's what I'm asking you to do!" and storm off in a fit of rage. No time to process that, I have machines to unlock. Please, leave your bags on the bagging stations. Please, ring up your items before you put them IN the bagging station. Please, that's a cabbage, not a lettuce. No, that cabbage didn't weight .2 lbs. I have to redo it. 
1:30 p.m. Last break. Almost there. Almost there. 
1:45 p.m. Coin accepter is jammed. It'll be just one minute ma'am. It's gotta work the stuck coins out. Unlock two machines, check on jammed machine. Oh look, it's still jammed. Yay. Unlock another machine. Coin accepter is no longer jammed. Yay, now you can stop glaring at me and pay. I wanna go home. Yes, I can give you change. No, I can't ring your order up for you. No, you can't put the bags into your cart until you are done. 
2:00 p.m. Why is everything flashing at me? Leg cramp! Leg cramp! Yes, I can limp over there and unlock your machine. Yes, I can approve your beer. Sorry, your card declined, and I have to get a supervisor to put in a code. Oh, you don't want it anymore? I'm sorry. No, I'm sorry, I have to get a supervisor to cancel this order, it's still unavailable. That one is out-of-order, sorry, you can't use it. No, you can't use it. No, it's not working. Yes, I know there is a line. It's still broken though. Dry ice? Sure, why not? Yeah, I would love to not have a combination lock on this cooler. NO, don't stick your hand in there, it'll burn you. Yes, I can unlock your machine. 
2:30 p.m. Unlock. Unlock. Unlock. Unlock. Approve beer. Approve beer. Approve beer. It's all a blur. Customer service; down there. Redbox: outside. Leg cramp!!! Leg cramp!!!! Unlock. Unlock. Unlock. Yes, the coffee machine has been fixed now. That self check machine is out of order. It's out of order. No, it's broke. Yes, I know there is a line. I don't know how to fix it. No, I don't know how to fix it. 
3 p.m. Almost there. Almost there. Stupid damn leg. What the hell? Unlocking everything. Please, don't move your bags until you are done. Don't touch me. Blur, blur, it's all a blur.
3:30 p.m. Off the clock! Off the clock!! Dry ice! NO! I'm off the clock. Sorry. She'll help you! FREE, AT LAST!!!!

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