Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Yes, You Can Call Me Sweetheart...

Yesterday on facebook, one of my friends shared a great link to an NPR blog about parenthood not always being sunshine and roses and how we should all just be honest with each other and admit it. See Alan Greenblatt's post  here. Tru dat.

This was my comment on the link:

I feel I do alright with this, but am inspired to do more. My new goal is to share a brutally honest complaint about parenthood once a day. I think I'll start with those chatty cashiers that feel compelled/are trained to ask you about your day. When they ask what my plans are for the rest of the day, my reply will be, "Well Bob, I would like to sit in my hot tub with my husband this evening and down a bottle of wine, but instead I shall be sweating my ass off at soccer practice this afternoon followed by a lovely evening of cleaning children, making dinner, cleaning the kitchen and doing laundry. By the time the kids are asleep, I will be too tired to do anything but pat my husband on the head on my way to bed. Thanks for asking!"

This reminded me that it's really really very fucking annoying that cashiers are always asking me what my plans are for the rest of the day. I don't mind "Hello" or "How are you?" or "Did you find everything alright?" or even having a discussion about the yumminess of a certain product or two, but "What are your plans for the rest of the day?" bugs the shit out of me. When did this get on the cashier training program for Trader Joe's et al? I know you do not fucking care what I'm doing after I leave your store! I feel forced to somehow make picking up the kids from school and schlepping them to an activity sound fun. Lately, after such an encounter I fantasize about what to say instead of the truth. I've been considering making up wild and crazy things like:

  • "I'm leaving for a modeling job in Paris, but first I just had to stop and get a gallon of milk for my family. It should tide them over till I get back."
  • "Tonight after the kids go to sleep my husband and I are going to sneak out and go to a Rave. I need these Mentos for later. They taste really awesome when your on X."
  • "Just trying to get all my errands done before my shift at The Landing Strip this afternoon."
  • "Heading home to do some naked vacuuming."
  • "I'm on my way to the airport to catch a flight to Kenya for a 3 week Safari." (preferably with a cart full of perishable items)
  • "I'm going straight home to feed my 27 cats. Could you scan a little faster? They pee on the toaster if I'm gone for more than an hour."

The closest I've actually come to saying anything pithy is "living the dream!" followed by some awkward smiling. I don't know if I can actually say any of the above. I'm a lot more ballsy in my head and on the interweb than in person, but I'm going to try and psych up for it. Maybe start with something short and sweet like the naked vacuuming.  

I will say that not all cashier chat is bad. There are a couple of 20 something boy cashiers at my local Target that have been calling me and some of my gal pals "sweetheart" at checkout. They say it at the end as in "Have a good day sweetheart." 20 something women might be insulted by this, but for the late 30's-40 something set this is awesome! Um, yes please! I'll take some more of that. If I could only figure out these guys' schedules, I'd schedule my Target trips around their work schedules. I'd stand several carts deep in their line even if I could zip right through some old lady's line. I know a number of others that would do the same. 

Customer service training people take note (especially those at Trader Joe's. I love your store so much, why must you mire my shopping experience in this way?!?):

"What are your plans for the rest of the day?" 

"Have a good day sweetheart!" (for women over 35) 


Peace & Love :-).

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