Feeling as if I may live, I ventured to Wal-mart for a few supplies. As always I had my shopping bags with me knowing full well that alone would confound, irritate, and confuse the cashier.
While I was standing in the check out lane, I noticed that the family ahead of me also had their own shopping bags. In fact they had a buggy full of different colored bags. Then I realized instead of putting the bags in their buggy, they were putting the bags full of groceries on the belt.
This thoroughly threw the cashier for a loop. Surprisingly, she politely took every item out of each bag, and scanned it. As she did this the customer was taking the items and placing them back in the bag - the same bag the cashier was still taking items out of to scan. At times, the cashier was having to stop and look at the register receipt to see what had been scanned. The customer was clueless and her husband and children just stood by and watched.
Naturally it did not take long before chaos ensued and the cashier was not sure what had been scanned and what had not. Being way too polite, she continued to try to work with the customer.
Meanwhile, I turned to the lady behind me and said, "Well, that's a new one." She looked and smiled, "Oh, no, that's the new thing. My daughter always uses her own bags."
Suddenly, I thought - Oh My God - no wonder the cashiers hate it when I show up with my bags, I was not doing it correctly. I was just giving them my empty bags to use, not presenting the bagged groceries for them to scan. Often the cashiers were clueless when I simply presented my own bags, usually the bags I had purchased from that same store for that purpose.
But then I thought, they have enough issues scanning items as they come off the belt one by one, why would taking them out of a bag be easier? At that point the lady behind me finished her thought, "Well that makes no sense."
As we watched the train wreck, finally a supervisor came up and politely started helping the customer take all the items out of the bags, put them on the belt, and then after they were scanned, place them back in the bags. The customer was confused. The cashier was relieved. Finally the transaction was finished.
When my bags and items got to the cashier, I commented, "Hopefully my little transaction here will be less confusing." The cashier smiled and said, "Well, we have all kinds." "I guess you do." "Oh, you have no idea."