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Old 11-12-2010, 12:34 PM   #21
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I think those who have waited the longest should get to go next. Opening an additional line does help everyone get out faster. As for gigantic orders, you could request that the retailer have special lines for that, but they probably would not comply.

The situation you describe is multiple servers with multiple queues, and they can lead to inequities with large orders, a slow cashier, or a slow check-writing customer who waits to hear the total before they even think about reaching for their checkbook. I apologize if this offends anybody.

Multiple servers with a single queue are more fair, but few places take this approach. The only ones that I can think of are Fry's Electronics and the U S Postal Service.
Also local credit union.
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Old 11-12-2010, 12:40 PM   #22
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Expresshole - A$$hole that uses the express checkout line when they have more than the maximum number of items allowed.


OMG, thank you for this one !! It just made my day!
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Old 11-12-2010, 12:41 PM   #23
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I expect rudeness and that way I'm surprised when people are nice.
I have a friend who maintains that the secret to a happy life is low expectations. The older I get, the more I think she's right!
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:04 PM   #24
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One little trick I've always found helpful, especially when I'm not in my sunniest mood.

If I'm in a situation where there might be any testiness on the part of my fellow customers, I try to prime myself to laugh, rather than any other possible response.

The vast majority of the time, that defuses any unpleasantness that might otherwise arise.
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:08 PM   #25
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If Americans can't act considerately when forming queues at checkout lines, it's no wonder the issue of deciding how we're going to pay down the national debt is hopelessly mired.......
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:35 PM   #26
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To top it off, the clerk at the new counter was in a dreadful mood, and took it out on us. He was as surly and sarcastic as I've ever come across, and when I asked him his name (in a friendly tone), flipped his name badge at me and wanted to know if I expected him to quit then and there.
Oh lordy..I remember the name tags back in my w*rking daze at a department store. There were three types..the brown one (which I wore) for the peons, the red one for the muckity muck wannabees and the gold one for the muckity mucks.

I'm considering wearing a gold name tag with the words, 'I'm the shizzz' on it.

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Apparently we don't look old enough for people to cut us any slack, so I will plan to carry a screaming-baby doll next time we go shopping (either that, or stop coloring my gray hair )
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:35 PM   #27
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I really love the self checkouts. The more you use them the better you get at it. And there always seems to be someone around to help if you have trouble.
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:42 PM   #28
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If Americans can't act considerately when forming queues at checkout lines, it's no wonder the issue of deciding how we're going to pay down the national debt is hopelessly mired.......

Just reminded me about my time when I lived in London... the British are famous for friendly queues.... we were all waiting to get a ticket for the Tube... when this guy come walking up and cuts right in line when the person that was being served left... the guy behind the glass told him to go to the back of the queue... he said he was late for a plane.. etc. etc... a few back and forth between him and the worker... and a few comments from behind me to him also... neither the clerk or the guy would budge... so I said 'just get the jerk a ticket so the rest of us don't have to wait for him to move'... most people seemed to agree..

Now, don't expect this niceness to flow into where you get on and off the train... I got pushed around a lot at first... waiting to get on when it was 'my turn'...
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:43 PM   #29
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I really love the self checkouts. The more you use them the better you get at it. And there always seems to be someone around to help if you have trouble.
Seems like when these first came out hardly anybody used them. They are quite popular now. I have a bucket of pennies in the garage. I used to take a handfull each time and feed them to the machine just to get rid of them. This is feasible as long as there is no line to use the self checkout.
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:44 PM   #30
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Regardless of how many items I had and vs how many the customers in front of me had, I would allow those who were in front of me in the queue to have access to the new checker. To me that's just good manners.
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:50 PM   #31
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Now, don't expect this niceness to flow into where you get on and off the train... I got pushed around a lot at first... waiting to get on when it was 'my turn'...
I had a surreal moment on "The Tube" when I was working on a project in London in 1984. I was dashing along the corridors to catch the next tube to King's Cross for the train back home at afternoon rush hour and when I turned down a corridor that lead to the platform I was after it was a seething mass of humanity with the platform so full that people were filling the corridors leading to it. I stood at the back of the crowd and when the tube pulled in it was already packed full. From way up ahead I heard this American woman's voice call out, "J*****S*****S CHR***********ST, WILL YOU LOOK AT THAT !!!!!"

It was very funny, honestly - may be you had to be there to appreciate it.
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:59 PM   #32
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A couple of weeks ago I had gone to pick up my son from an event and was getting home at about 11:00 pm. A truck had overturned in the ditch and the one road to my house was blocked. So we went to the grocery store waiting for it to be cleared (mostly to hit the restroom). We were only buying 3 items. The self checkout was closed (or I would have used it). Store had exactly one checkout line open. I dutifully get in line between 2 people with huge carts of stuff. One of them had some sort of issue so took forever. Finally they start checking the second one, but more delays. In the meantime there are 5 or 6 people now behind me.

I am by then the first person in line not already being helped and have a total of 3 items.

I look around and new checkout line has just opened next to me (it was behind me). The checker is helping people who were behind me. She had invited them to the new line. It was so annoying. They do that a lot at that store. Open a new line but invite the people in the back of the line. If you are the first person in line who hasn't been served they apparently assume you should stay in your original line.

I asked the checker why help first the people who are behind me in line when I've been waiting a long time already. She had no answer. It was so annoying. I didn't blame the people in line but it was extremely annoying. The person in front of me had so much stuff that several of the people in the "new" line got helped before I final got helped. Just a reminder of how much I dislike that particular store.
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Old 11-12-2010, 02:09 PM   #33
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A couple of weeks ago I had gone to pick up my son from an event and was getting home at about 11:00 pm. A truck had overturned in the ditch and the one road to my house was blocked. So we went to the grocery store waiting for it to be cleared (mostly to hit the restroom). We were only buying 3 items. The self checkout was closed (or I would have used it). Store had exactly one checkout line open. I dutifully get in line between 2 people with huge carts of stuff. One of them had some sort of issue so took forever. Finally they start checking the second one, but more delays. In the meantime there are 5 or 6 people now behind me.

I am by then the first person in line not already being helped and have a total of 3 items.

I look around and new checkout line has just opened next to me (it was behind me). The checker is helping people who were behind me. She had invited them to the new line. It was so annoying. They do that a lot at that store. Open a new line but invite the people in the back of the line. If you are the first person in line who hasn't been served they apparently assume you should stay in your original line.

I asked the checker why help first the people who are behind me in line when I've been waiting a long time already. She had no answer. It was so annoying. I didn't blame the people in line but it was extremely annoying. The person in front of me had so much stuff that several of the people in the "new" line got helped before I final got helped. Just a reminder of how much I dislike that particular store.
And did I mention I was annoyed?

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I have a friend who maintains that the secret to a happy life is low expectations. The older I get, the more I think she's right!
My version goes something like this: There are too many to beat up...
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Old 11-12-2010, 02:20 PM   #34
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I love being retired. I usually go shopping when few others do.
Sometimes I am at store at lunch hour. I have sometimes seen local road/construction workers (buying lunch) mildly surprised when I motioned them to go ahead at checkout.

Hey, they're trying to get a quick lunch from work and I'm retired; what's gender or age got to do with it?
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Old 11-12-2010, 04:09 PM   #35
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Multiple servers with a single queue are more fair, but few places take this approach. The only ones that I can think of are Fry's Electronics and the U S Postal Service.
And why don't more places do this? It just makes so much sense. And they could put all those 'impulse buy' items in one long line rather than a small one at each register.

Maybe it's just a holdover from my w*rking days. In a production environment you are always thinking about the queues and bottlenecks. I used to go nuts when someone would stand at the coffee machine and block the line while they added their sugar and stirred it - inside my head I was screaming "Move up a place and stir your sugar there, you are allowing a critical resource to be under-utilized you DOLT!".

OK, I still do that, but I'm not in a rush very often, so I just shake my head and wonder just how out of touch some people can be.

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Old 11-12-2010, 04:14 PM   #36
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I love being retired. I usually go shopping when few others do.
That doesn't seem to help much, IME. I assumed it would, but there seem to be disproportionately fewer checkers or floor people, they seem to move slower, and the lady that wants to buy a pack of gum with an out-of-state check always manages to be the one ahead of me in line.



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Sometimes I am at store at lunch hour. I have sometimes seen local road/construction workers (buying lunch) mildly surprised when I motioned them to go ahead at checkout.

Hey, they're trying to get a quick lunch from work and I'm retired; what's gender or age got to do with it?
Agree. That is one of those priceless little luxuries of being retired. It feels sooooo good to be able to do that, and it's such a small thing.

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Old 11-12-2010, 04:32 PM   #37
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I had a surreal moment on "The Tube" when I was working on a project in London in 1984. I was dashing along the corridors to catch the next tube to King's Cross for the train back home at afternoon rush hour and when I turned down a corridor that lead to the platform I was after it was a seething mass of humanity with the platform so full that people were filling the corridors leading to it. I stood at the back of the crowd and when the tube pulled in it was already packed full. From way up ahead I heard this American woman's voice call out, "J*****S*****S CHR***********ST, WILL YOU LOOK AT THAT !!!!!"

It was very funny, honestly - may be you had to be there to appreciate it.

I have mentioned this before.... one of the interesting things that I learned on the Tube was how many people can stuff one one of those cars...

Sometimes the cars were 'full' as you say... but some people would wait until the doors were starting to close and jump in... knocking everybody back a bit... the doors slamming behind them... and they were on... now, everybody else adjusted and it seems there was room for them...

I just waited... I do have to admit that it was NY were I waited the longest... 5 trains came by full of people... the 6th was pretty empty (when compared to normal rush hour)...
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Old 11-12-2010, 05:16 PM   #38
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After thinking about the proper etiquette for lines I think it depends on were you live . If you live on the East coast say New York or New Jersey you are expected to jump the line anything else marks you a wimp and an easy target . In California they would probably just give you the peace sign and pass a joint so you could chill while you waited . In the deep south they would say " You go you all I don't have to be at the trailer park bingo session until later hon " . In Texas they would just sic one of their varmints on you and in the Midwest there would be no lines since it is fly over country .As for New England who shops in all that snow and we all know Seattle residents only shop at yuppie stores and it's a status symbol to be seen waiting in line to pay for overpriced groceries .
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Old 11-12-2010, 05:24 PM   #39
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I have mentioned this before.... one of the interesting things that I learned on the Tube was how many people can stuff one one of those cars...

Sometimes the cars were 'full' as you say... but some people would wait until the doors were starting to close and jump in... knocking everybody back a bit... the doors slamming behind them... and they were on... now, everybody else adjusted and it seems there was room for them...

I just waited... I do have to admit that it was NY were I waited the longest... 5 trains came by full of people... the 6th was pretty empty (when compared to normal rush hour)...
My most painful experience was that same year I mentioned. The train was packed and I was stood with my shoulder hard against the side wall, the sliding door on my left and folks on my right. The train pulled into a station (not mine) and the doors opened, grabbing a bunch of my hair on the way, so I was now pulled up tight against the join between the wall and the doors. The embarassment factor was far worse than the pain, and it was a great relief when the doors closed prior to the train moving off.
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Old 11-12-2010, 06:22 PM   #40
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I think the cashiers should be instructed to call out "I'll take the next person in line". If they do not, I think it is common courtesy to let the people in front of you go next, or someone who is obviously frail or has a baby or is pregnant or has just one or two items. I would never think of saying anything rude to anyone at the grocery store, and if some sour comment were directed at me for some perceived slight, I would ignore it. It is not worth it to me to get worked up over a retail store checkout line. That, plus I am not confrontational. And who knows, the person could have mental health issues.
I always count my items to make sure I am not over the express line checkout limit. I have been called over to this line on occasion when it was empty (and I had more items than the limit). I have then had the experience on one or two occasions of some customer coming up behind me and glowering at me as if I had blithely ignored the signage. As in many things in life, sometimes things are not as they appear.
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