Cheap Shot | Deliverance: F U Scan'I’m going to Winder Farms 

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I quit. My job sucks. The boss is such a jerk; he never speaks to me. He’s never said, “Great work today, Phil. Thanks to your working here part-time, I was either able to lay off or not hire three people.” His bottom line looks great. Well, he can kiss my bottom line and suck his own rising stock.

Oh, wait. It’s considered polite to give two weeks’ notice. OK, I quit two weeks ago—did you notice?

Last week, I snapped. There is low pay, and then there is no pay, and this job fit into the latter category. For the past few years, I have been working as a part-time cashier/bagger for a number of retail and grocery stores. This week, I quit.

The straw that broke the camel’s back, making my house of cards crumble as flat as a pancake and making me say the cliché: “Take this job and shove it,” was a late-night trip to the grocery store. If a job makes me so angry that I resort to clichés, then you know I’m as pissed as a racehorse.

It’s rare, but on this night, I was in the mood for fruits and vegetables, and my grocery cart looked like a farmers market as I pulled up to the checkout lanes. However, even though this grocery store is open 24/7, it didn’t have a single cashier on duty. You see, not only do I work as a part-time cashier, but if you’ve ever used a self-checkout or a U-scan machine, so do you. We’ve been hired to check, scan and bag our own groceries.

Admittedly, U-Scans do save time if you have a few items. However, when your cart is full of groceries, one of the items you can’t buy is time in a bottle. I don’t fear technological change; I’m not a Luddite. But buying a cartful of vegetables using the U-Scan is a pain in the asparagus.

If a professional cashier were on duty this night, he or she could have had my groceries in the bag and me out of the store in less than 10 minutes. Instead, it took an hour. Each fruit required inputting a price look-up (PLU) code. Each vegetable needed to be weighed and each item set off the alarm, “Please wait for cashier assistance.” It was like a contest called “Who Is the Most Annoyed Person in the Store Tonight?” Me, the cashier, or the line of people winding down the frozen-food aisle? Personally, I thought I won. However, if you were in line behind me, buying only a six-pack of beer, I bet you thought you were the winner. We were all losers, and it’s our own fault. We’ve been such a success at self-checkout that customer service has now checked out. There’s no need to properly staff your store if your customers will work for free. That’s why I quit. I’m not Tom Sawyer’s bitch, and I’ll no longer paint his fence. U-Scan? “F” U-Scan.

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Thanks for reading my rant, because this is why I signed up with Winder Farms. It used to be Winder Dairy, but now it’s a farm. And I’m thrilled to be in their farm league. Once a week, I go online and place my order, and the next day, it shows up on my front porch. I don’t have to wait for cashier assistance, use my gas to drive to the supermarket or wait in a line. Winder is a farm. I can order fruits, vegetables, meat, milk and more. Tonight, for dinner, I’m having fettuccini Alfredo. If you knew me, you’d know this doesn’t happen in my kitchen. Just a minute, you do know me. I’m your friend. If a friend refers you to Winder Farms, you get $30 off your first order, friend. And, so does your friend. Hell, if you save me $30, I’ll be your BFF. Next time you see me, buy me a beer. I’ll drink it. See—we’re friends.

Sign up with Winder Farms. Don’t stand in line. Don’t work for free. Avoid U-Scan like the plague.

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Phil Jacobsen

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