Friday, February 24, 2006

How May I Help You?

There are things I just don’t understand. I’m not one to make a list of pet peeves, but this is probably going to come out looking that way. I just get baffled when I come across certain things; the way people behave or just the way things are set up. Why, oh why, would you not use an English speaking employee or person to handle your deliveries? I promise you, that I will no longer order Chinese take out to be delivered and give them directions to my house over the phone.

“Okay, where you live?”
“123 East Nunya Ave. Just make sure you make a left at the corner deli.”
“Ah, right!”
“No left.”
“Right!’
“No. Make a left at the corner deli. I’m the third house on your left.”
“Right! Third! Right.”
“No, do not make the third right, it’s left at the corner deli, and the third house on your left on that street.”

I love these guys with all my heart. They are the sweetest people, so I really feel bad poking fun at them, but this is a huge problem. Well, not really, I just have to get off my lazy ass and drive there for ‘pick up’.

Issue #2

What a pleasure it is going to Walmart. Or is it? Yesterday afternoon, I had to make a trip there to pick up a half fridge. I’m creating a little ‘dry bar’ in my living room, so it’s convenient to have a drink at all times. Of course for guests…who else? I saw someone else do this and I was a little envious. Their living room looked like a suite. So, I basically pulled a copycat routine and did the same thing. My favorite bottles of alcohol on the top (like a bar) and crisp cool beer and goodies in the fridge. Great idea--right?

If you don’t know me and this is your first visit here, I have repeatedly discussed in previous posts that I have a slight case of agoraphobia. My biggest fear is walking into a supermarket that is ‘too large’. Give me farm markets any day; give me little produce shops--fine. I’ll pay extra for ‘organic only’. Whatever. As long as I don’t have to walk into those giant supermarkets. It’s just God awful.

I even tried looking up one of these half fridges online on the internet. I was very particular of the one I wanted. It had to have freezer (for my vodka) it had to have numerous shelving, a draw for fruits and veggies, and of course, I needed it to be black to match my living room. No, my living room isn’t all black—just the couch. I wanted it to melt in. Anyway, before I even attempted to go, I sat down, meditated and prayed. “OH GOD HELP ME PLEASE!" Seriously, I prayed before walking into this store. Anytime I walk into one of these giant chains, I get instant tunnel vision. I begin to feel lightheaded and start feeling anxiety almost instantly. I first get that ‘pins & needles’ type of feeling, and then it graduates to the pesky palps. I should really consider carrying a flask around with me at all times.

So, I run over to Walmart and found a parking spot out in Carajoland. Nothing wrong with that, I could use the exercise anyway. I walk into that foyer where they always have a little old man checking for your receipts. I grab a cart and knew---this was it---I’m heading in.

I walk inside, and all I see are florescent lights that looked as though it went on forever. I could not see the end of the store.

Here’s what my mind goes through:

“Just push the cart. Push the cart. Push the cart. Keep going. Come on. Go. Keep going. You’re not going to die. Shit! A palp. Just keep going. They say I can’t die. Can I die? Oh my God, what if I die right here? Would anyone notice? Would they leave my carcass lying on the floor until someone says, ‘Clean up aisle five please!’”

Not healthy, huh? I know, but it’s what my mind goes through. Then I see one of those happy-chipper employees with a huge blue smock that have gigantic words on the back saying, “HOW MAY I HELP YOU?” So with that being plastered all over this girl’s back, I thought it would be safe to ask for help.

“Excuse me?”
(A blank stare is all I got. A stare with a thousand words—saying, “Don’t you know this is my coffee break?”)
“Sorry to bother you, but do you know where I can find those half fridges—I believe they’re considered compact?”
(Girl rolls her eyes at me before speaking)
“Aisle eight.”
She says, and turns around, while rolling her eyes once again.

Not only was she wrong, because the fridges were located in aisle five, but the nerve of this wench to wear a big blue smock with the words, “HOW MAY I HELP YOU?” Take off that smock and put on something that says, “LEAVE ME THE FCUK ALONE!” It would be more appropriate.

There it is. The perfect midsize fridge. It was quite large, and sitting on where? The top shelf of course. Now I consider myself to be a strong chicky, but this was a bit much. God help me if I have to fetch another pissy employee. I’m fetching a man this time. No PMSing bitch with an attitude. I need an employee who loved ‘his’ job.

“Excuse me? Can you help me lift this fridge onto my cart?” I ask the gentleman with the same blue smock with a helpless 'I'm just a girl' type of tone.
“Sure! No problem!” He says---with a smile! These are times when I question my lifestyle as a lesbian.

He picks up the fridge and tries to place it in my cart. It wasn’t happening. It was too big. He placed it on top of the cart—where I had to push it without seeing what’s in front of me. I thanked the happy employee and continued to make my way to the check out lanes.

My only obstacle was to not run over these little Hasidim kids, as they bounced around from aisle to aisle as though they were prisoners set free. Out of fifty lanes or so, there was only ONE lane open. No, I am not exaggerating. They had ‘self checkouts’, with a person moderating the whole scene—which I find ridiculous, because the girl who was moderating everything had to help each and every person purchasing something. Totally useless.

They put an item down, and the robot-like voice says, “Please place item on the tray.”
So they place it again on the tray.
“I do not detect an item. Please place item on the tray.”
They pick the item back up and place it on there again.
“I’m sorry. I do not detect an item on the tray. Please place item on the tray.”
Okay. Bring in the men with the white coats because someone’s gonna go postal here! Then the girl that is moderating the three self checkouts walks over and has to do it herself. I was not about to join this crew and have my anxiety increase to its all time high. So I joined the old fashioned checkout line…The only one that was open. As you can probably imagine, the line was almost to the back of the store. People had their carriages piled up to the ceiling. I had to occupy my mind with entertaining thoughts. Then I decided to give Madelene (my girlfriend) a call to pass some time. I thought this may ease my anxiety a tad.

"Mad! Hey! I'm at Walmart on line and I got that mini fridge that we've been wanting. It's big though!"
"Oh great! How much is the shipping?"
"Nothing...I'm putting in my truck...why would I pay for shipping?"
"And you're online buying it?" Madelene asked, sounding very confused.
"Yes, I'm on line at Walmart buying it now."
"But they charge for shipping, Deb."
"No...Not if you are purchasing it from the store."
"But you'll have to go to the store to pick it up if you don't want shipping charges."
"Madelene! I'm at the store!"
"Oh I thought you were online?"
"No! I am on the line at the check out counter. I gotta go. I'm having an anxiety attack."

CLICK!

I ended up waiting over thirty minutes because the line was held up by someone who’s credit card was maxed out. Great. I flipped through paparazzi magazines and checked out who broke up with who and who and who got busted cheating on their wife. Good gossip always passes the time.

Tomorrow’s mission: Buy new coffee maker at Walmart. Here’s the plan. I’m going to bring my camera with me. I may even make a video blog for you to show how ridiculous this store is. I’ve wanted to do an ‘on location’ video for a while now. I want to show you what I go through. So once I get educated on how to utilize the ‘vlog’, (video log oppose to a web log) I'll have some great footage to release. I’m going to have my dear sweet mother with me as well. You’ll get to see her in action bumping into everything with her cart—and everyone. If I manage to do this correctly, it will be very entertaining to say the least. I have to hide my cam to do this too.

So for now, you’ll have to just settle for the pictures. But, keep an eye out for the video. I promise it’ll be entertaining. Not only will it be narrated by me, but it’s going to be secretly filming those nasty blue smock wenches in action. Be on the look out! I just might be filming you!