Thursday, May 17, 2012

Have a nice day

I just threw a tantrum in Kmart. I don't really know if anyone saw it but I hope they did.

I used to man a till at Kmart, getting paid $9 an hour to scan socks and undies for price conscious pensioners. It sucked. When I quit however I knew that operating a checkout at Kmart was something I would never again have to do. Or so I thought.

I was planning on starting a herb garden today and I went to Kmart to purchase some seeds. I got to the registers and there was only one with its light on and it wasn't manned. Reluctantly I went to the self-checkout lane. The oregano went through but when I tried to scan the sage the machine froze up and kept telling me to put the scanned item in the baggage area. Even after I did that it kept on saying it like it was Rainman or something. At this point I just lost it, throwing my assorted herbs across the scanning area and storming out of the store. Who knew gardening could bring out such anger and petulance?

Scanning stuff is a job for acne ridden teenagers, unambitious older people and recently arrived migrants who haven't yet got their computer science degrees. Back when I fell in the first category I was at least getting paid something to do it. Now however they are trying to get me to do it for free. In the words of John McEnroe, "that's bullshit!"

I don't know where all the staff have gone at Kmart but it seems like an eerie ghost town with overly bright lighting. Providing a human to take my money seems like it would be a common courtesy but I guess Coles Myer would prefer to cut costs than provide me someone to exchange pleasantries with.

I think if you use the self-checkout lane you should be able to steal one item. That way you would be rewarded for your effort and hiring checkout chicks may once again become a good value proposition.

But what's next? Are we going to have to flip our own burgers? Are we going to have to pour our own love heart milk thing when we order a coffee? Are dirty old men going to arrive at brothels and be told to look after themselves? It's a slippery slope people -watch out.

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