I hate the automatic checkout scanners at the supermarket. Being a senior citizen, I have seen a lot of change in the world, but this is one change I can do without. They are rude and insensitive. Why, just today I was forced to an automated scanner. I had a few items to check out and the lines for the humanized checkouts were long with people who had overflowing shopping carts.
I stood silently on a short line, just three people ahead of me, waiting for an automated scanner to be free. When it was my turn, I pushed my cart to the scanner and hit the start button.
“Do you have a bonus card?” A woman’s slightly nasal voice asked me. Since I anticipated this, I had my bonus card ready. I pressed the “yes” button and the nasal voice replied,
“Please scan your bonus card.” I complied.
“Welcome bonus card member,” came the nasal voice. “Please scan your first item.”
I left my items in the shopping cart, picking one at a time to scan. I scanned the first item and a voice replied, “Place your item in the bag.” I could not get the bag opened so I put it on the platform. Then the voice said, “You must place your items on the receiving platform before you scan them.” Getting a bit irritated, I took almost everything out of the cart and put them on the receiving platform.
“Thank you. Please scan your next item,” said the nasal voice. I glanced over at the bonafide live human attendant and saw that she was not looking at me. She seemed to be in a world of her own, which I cannot blame her, it must be a very boring, mind numbing job to listen to the nasal voice all day.
Oops, I took too long, the nasal voice came back, sounding a bit annoyed, “Please scan your next item!”
I went to scan my next item but it fell on the floor. Getting nervous I reached down to pick it up before Ms. Nasal had a chance to chide me. Alas, I was not fast enough, “Do you have another item to scan? If so PLEASE scan your next item!”
I scanned my next item, and then because I was running out of space by the bags, I tried to open one of the plastic bags to put the item in. Ms. Nasal spit out “Place your item in the bag.”
I finally got the bag opened and the item in. I wondered how they could program a snotty attitude in a computer.
“Please scan your next item.” I managed to get it scanned and in the bag, but the bag fell over on the platform.
“You did not place your item in the bag properly!” Said Ms. Nasal. “Take your item out of the bag and call the attendant.”
I took the item out and held it up for the attendant to see, she hit a few buttons and told me to rescan it, which I did.
“Place your item in the bag.”
I did, and reached for my next item which was still in the shopping cart, the furthest it could be from my groping hand. Not fast enough.
“Scan your next item!” The annoyed voice of Ms. Nasal barked at me.
I managed to reach the item and scan it.
“Place your item in the bag, and please scan your next item.” I did but it fell out of the bag and the bag sagged to one side. I fixed it as quickly as I could, but I could not beat Ms. Nasal.
“Please scan your next item, you are holding up the line.”
Boy, if I ever meet Ms. Nasal in person, Pow! Right in the kisser!
“Scan your next item.”
I scanned my last item.
“If you are finished, please press the finished button.”
“Whew” I thought, almost done. I pressed the finished button.
“Do you have any coupons?”
I pressed the “yes” button. “Scan your coupons now.”
I scanned the first one. No problem and the next two were no problem. Then came coupon number four.
“That coupon is out of date.” Said Ms. Nasal.
I looked, but it had not expired, so I tried to scan it again.
“That coupon is out of date; don’t try to scam our store.”
I scanned in the last of the coupons and then took the valid coupon to the attendant. She looked at it and did some magic on her register and got Ms. Nasal to accept the coupon. So I went back to my pile of groceries.
“If you are finished, select your method of payment.” Said Ms. Nasal.
I paid with my credit card and a voice as sweet as can be said, “Thank you for shopping with us. Please take your register receipt and any store coupons and proceed to the attendant. Have a wonderful day.”