I must have been a happy bunny of late as I haven’t written an LLI since last summer. But there has been one nagging away at the back of my mind that I’ve shied away from tackling because, erm.., it seems so bloody petty — the supermarket trolley.
More precisely, poor and inconsiderate control of the same. That and the checkout.
I should start by saying that this is meant to be a non-sexist post. You might think differently when (or if) you’ve finished reading it as some of the traits described apply to both men and women. But I confess that the worst behaviour is definitely on the distaff side.
Here goes the list of my occasionally misogynist irritants:
1) The large person: Either sex, we see them more and more of them these days. They don’t move quickly do they? And they like to take a breather, but why do so where the aisle narrows between the shelves on one side and a bargain basket on the other?
2) The wanderer: Folk who abandon their trolley in the middle of an aisle, not parked at the side, but abandoned askew while they wander off in search of loo roll, custard pastries, rubber gloves or whatever.
3) The tangentalists: Sorry, this is where is gets sexist. This is always a female trait: women who push their trolleys down the aisle, get taken by some product left or right and as they move towards it, the other arm pushes the trolley in the opposite direction, blocking two-thirds of the passing space.
4) The about-turners: You know the feeling. You’re on your roll, head down, heading purposely to the checkout when someone decides to swing their trolley in a sudden about-turn, loud clash of steel and mumbled apologies. (Why do I apologise?)
5) But the 7th pit of hell is the woman fumbling for her purse at the ‘speedy’ checkout. (Sorry about the rest being sexist, but it’s true.) You’ve done your shopping and queued at the counter. Why is it such a surprise that you’re expected to pay? Look of surprise. Rummage in handbag. Fish out purse. Hold conversation with checkout entity (refuse to say person or man/woman etc.) Realise forgotten item, saying, “Won’t be a mo’.”
She returns and smiles sweetly, saying, “Sorry.” And I say, “No problem.” How irritated am I with myself?