I’m sure all of you have seen these things before, but there aren’t any in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. There aren’t any stores either. Just cows and houses that need paint. Not the cows. The houses.
So I came out here to rural isolated Wyoming and they have self checkout lines at the grocery store and at Walmart. Only the first time I was entertained, at least by the sound of change spilling out after I had paid. It reminded me of good gambling days like that time I played well in Cooke City and bought us all lunch. Cha-ching.
But the computer woman’s droning DEMANDING voice tells me what to do before I’ve had a chance to blink. She wants it all and she wants it all NOW. Put your item in the bag NOW. Pay NOW. Take your change NOW. I feel PRESSURED. I feel RUSHED. I feel like a shot of vodka and it’s only nine in the morning.
And then Nick says that you have to bag everything and wait until you pay to pick up the bags because the computer woman will YELL at you. So now I’m just too scared to bag anything because bad things might happen. He might have been kidding, but I don’t know why he’d try to keep me away from that woman, unless of course he has a thing for her and is trying to keep us from chatting.
Then Abrah told me that she broke the computer woman, who completely froze during their conversation today. A real live person had to come and restart her and then wouldn’t let Abrah touch her again, but made her go through a real line instead. Which makes me wonder if these self checkout computers were installed to weed us out. The people able to follow shouted demands from the people who break the computers by whispering swear words at them or making sarcastic comments after each command.
Place your item in the bag NOW.
What are you going to do about it Bitch? You’re stuck in a computer. Mwahahah.
I wonder if her computer woman is the same one as mine. Was there a reason Abrah wasn’t allowed to speak to her again?
Maybe I’m afraid the wad of cash crumpled up in my pocket won’t be accepted by the machine. I already dread car washes and vending machines after spending hours standing there trying to flatten out one dollar bills while the machine keeps spitting them back out at me and I can hear the people behind me sighing and shuffling their crisp flat money impatiently, thinking I must live in the ghetto, which indeed I did.
So I use the real people lines because they are much more entertaining. And they bag for me. And wish me a good day. I’m going to avoid self checkout longer than I avoided owning a microwave. BAH.