A few nights ago, Hulky and I took a late-night grocery run. A new Stop & Shop just opened up very close to us, so we were enjoying that convenience while picking up some treats & groceries. We often use the self check-out line and we got in behind someone who had a relatively empty basket. The young man, who appeared to be around our age, was talking on his iPhone while scanning his items and seemed to be having trouble checking out. He got his vegetables scanned in just fine, using the search function on the touch screen, but he kept flipping over the bag of lettuce, searching for the bar code and trying to scan the front of the bag, unsuccessfully.
Eventually (it had been several minutes on that bag, he seemed very confused and only slightly distracted by the phone call), I leaned over, instructed him to flip it over, and pointed out the bar code to scan. He thanked me, continued scanning, but asked if I knew how to scan his Stop & Shop card at the end of the order. I demonstrated the motion of waving the card over the scanner, while telling him just to pass it over the scanner, and he scanned it successfully. He thanked me again, bagged his groceries, and left.
It was a very weird experience.
Was he stoned out of his mind, or did was he unfamiliar with how to buy groceries?
Since he had a card, but didn’t know how to use it, I think maybe he borrowed someone else’s and does not usually buy his own groceries. It doesn’t really matter though. Best of luck to him.
It made me feel very grateful for knowing how to do something that seemed so basic to me. Thanks, Mama, for bringing us grocery shopping with you when we were little. I never thought that this was a skill someone might have to learn, so I guess I learned something from that.