April 21, 2006

No Frills - Really, No Frills

I need to talk for a few moments about grocery stores.

I'm a big fan of them: in fact I frequent them often -- that's where I buy most of my food Wow, eh?

Anyway, what I'm not particularly fond of is what seems to be an overly high level of security; why do I now feel like I'm going through an airport metal detector everytime I need a loaf of bread?

Now I can get over the fact that I have to pay for my shopping cart:

Because I'm paying for a clean, smooth-running one, don't you know...

And, yes, I can somewhat get over the fact that I have to pay for my grocery bags:

Even though they don't offer the option of paper...

What I can't get over is what I encountered yesterday at my local No Frills.

When I was all done paying for my cart and my bags, I realized I had too much to carry home. I don't live far at all from the place, but my disability would deem it impossible to make the trip without collapsing on the way.

So I decided to roll the cart home with me and take it back afterwards.

But as I neared the perimeter of the parking lot, I heard a voice behind me saying, "hey you!"

I turned around to find some guy approaching me. Some weasly looking guy with a cell phone.
He then proceeded to tell me that I was not allowed to leave the parking lot with the cart, company policy, "didn't I see the signs?"
Well, no I didn't, but I politely explained my predicament, the disability, and the fact that I lived just around the corner and would return the cart promptly.

During our discussion, a woman in a van stopped beside us and yelled out the window, "hey, you're the jerk who gave me a ticket!" They proceeded to argue as I waited patiently.
"Unbelievable!" the woman yelled as she drove away.

Anyway, back to me. He simply would not let me take the cart: "no take cart. Only parking lot. See signs?" Yes, not only was he quoting company policy, but he was doing so in broken English, always a plus for customer service in an English speaking city.

Sort of pissed off by now, I reluctantly took the cart back to the front of the store and lit a smoke trying to reason with myself why taking a taxi would be the sensible thing to do, which, not only was I not in the financial position to do (after spending all that money on bags), but would also be an inconvenience to the taxi driver since the drive was less then $5.

Low and behold! While in mid cigarette, the same silly cell-phone man approached a woman taking her cart out of the parking lot just like I had tried to a few minutes earlier. Expecting her to get the same crusty reply that I had received, I was astonished to find that he decided to allow her to go!

Boy was I pissed! There was no difference between the two situations besides the fact that I was disabled! Was it because he thought she was prettier or is he just screwed in the head?

Anyway, my cab arrived shortly after, but not without some evil eye directed at the stupid shopping cart cop.

I understand that it is their company policy for shopping carts not to leave the parking lot, that's why I decided not to make a big deal about it. But after seeing him allow someone else do it, after I explained to him that I wouldn't be able to get my groceries home without the cart, there was just no excuse.

So mister, thanks for making a disabled person's life just a little bit harder, and for ruining my perfectly happy day.

for this No Frills. Very unsatisfied customer.

Love Marylin.

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