Social Question

mickhock's avatar

Why do we feel pressurised at the checkout ?

Asked by mickhock (540points) September 28th, 2010

You get to the checkout and the assistant is sliding that food over the pricing sensor at 100 miles an hour.
Now….you try to keep up with the packing but faster they come….all of a sudden it stops…. she presses the public adress system “supervisor to checkout 9 please” she bawls out !! Now all this time the line has backed up with three people with trollies packed to busting and acting like the have a plane to catch in five bloddy minutes.
A bar code could not be read !!! Big deal,in two minutes it will all be sorted…........not a big deal for you? but for those behind….well it’s the biggest fucking hold up in the world…..tut tut tut tsk tsk tsk….evil stares from the pregnant mother,glancing looks of distain from people you have never met yet they really do not need someone like you holding them up.
Not your fault the bar code was faulty but to the people in line you are public enemy number bloody 1!!!!!
Finally it’s over you are free,it’s all packed and paid for and as you leave the checkout as your blood pressure drops to a safe level and you face melts back to it’s normal shape you look once again at the line and think what a set of impatient xzysv.
Do you get this happen to you or have i lost the plot here?

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21 Answers

DrBill's avatar

Delays are a normal part of technology, just don’t be so paranoid about it and relax.

aprilsimnel's avatar

When I cared more about what strangers thought of me, then, yeah, it was like that.

But when you get over such self-consciousness and realize that others’ reactions aren’t about you, you get over that anxiety rather quickly. Even when they think it’s about you and they’re rolling their eyes at you, it’s not about you. OK? It’s OK.

JustmeAman's avatar

I agree anyone with a problem and giving looks has the problem. Nothing we can do about it or should do about it. Just do what you are and finish your business and go on. You find rude people among others everywhere you go.

partyparty's avatar

There have been problems at the checkout for me in the past, but it’s not my problem, I don’t let it worry me. Let the store sort it out… oh and don’t look at the people behind you who are waiting in the queue… then they don’t get the opportunity to give you glowering stares.
Shopping should be a happy experience well for most of the time!!

ucme's avatar

I’m under pressure from the wife, never mind anyone else. I’ve broken more eggs than I care to mention. See I can feel her eyes like lasers burning into me. My cockeyed attempts at placing groceries in the bag don’t go down well. I mean just put the bloody stuff in & get out of there is my plan. Oh no, everything has it’s place, those items in that bag, these in the other. ARRRGGGGHHHH!! Yeah…...I don’t like the checkout, or death row as I like to call it :¬(

marinelife's avatar

I am mellower than you are in the line. Stuff happens. Do not feel pressured over that which you have no control.

Trillian's avatar

Nah. I waited for my turn. I didn’t try to start a friendship with the cashier, or have a meaningful debate about ife. So anything that went wrong is therefore, not my fault. I have, on occasion, turned and apologized to those in line behind me; “Sorry, who knew the price thingy was messed up?” but they can clearly see that I’m not doing anything to prolong their wait so…
I reserve my hostility for people who don’t start to fill out chcks until the total is displayed, or those oblivious idiots who want to stand there and chit chat as if there are no people behind them waiting; “Yeah, shut up and get out, bitch. Nobody gives a shit what you’re fixing for dinner.”

janbb's avatar

I agree with @aprilsimnel; life gets much easier when you realize not everyone is looking at or reacting to you.

CMaz's avatar

“You get to the checkout and the assistant is sliding that food over the pricing sensor at 100 miles an hour.”

Where? I WISH!

They are usually jerking around, chatting and trying like hell to get the scanner to scan.

Aster's avatar

@ChazMaz I think so too.

ninjacolin's avatar

just look at them and say: “suckers!” with an evil grin.

Lizabette's avatar

I HATE checkout lines, that is when people are 1/16” away from my breathing space, as if the closer they get to me, they will physically push me ever faster out of their way, as they are already practically pushing their items under the cashier’s nose before my purchase is even completed (and I don’t write checks to “hold anyone up”!), not to mention actually bumping me with their shopping cart and I’m not in their way at all. When I can feel them, they are too close! Yes, it’s THEIR “issue”, but they’re really pushing against MY personal boundaries, that’s the chief complaint for me. No, I don’t “look” at them or “ask for it”. Yes, I “overlook” and “don’t say anything rude to them”, but it is hard to take and I just want to say “back off from me so I can breathe”.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

The word is pressured and it’s because other people will be pissed off and they’re not bright enough to differentiate between technology or you or the clerk and think it’s everyone’s fault.

josie's avatar

In a strange sort of way, I kind of like it when that happens. The next time it happens to you, smile broadly, turn and face the folks in line, and make eye contact with each one. It’s great to watch what they individually do. One thing is for sure, they do not expect that.

Lizabette's avatar

@josie : Thank you for your comment josie… I will have to try and remember to do that sometime, I’m sure it would at least “throw them off” (not expecting it!) :-) I would be very interested to know how they would react?! hmmm

partyparty's avatar

@Lizabette Yes I agree .. people getting too close can be very intrusive welcome to Fluther!!

CyanoticWasp's avatar

I never feel pressured at the point of purchase, and I never transmit that to others who, for whatever reason, hold up the line.

I do blame the store owners who refuse to adopt a “carousel” type system where all shoppers arriving at the checkout stand in one line and get served by “the next available cashier”. It works wonderfully well at airports all around the world, and it also works fine at a lot of good retailers who know what they’re doing. Why supermarkets don’t adopt this I will never know.

I hate trying to guess which line is going to be quickest, because “shortest” doesn’t always mean “quickest”. I reserve my ire for management, as usual.

NaturallyMe's avatar

People like that are just stupid, that’s all. Just don’t look in their direction and pretend they’re not there.
What annoys me more here is when the next person in line can’t wait to get their stuff on the conveyor belt and get into the spot you’re standing right now while paying, and i often don’t even get time to put my change or credit card back into my wallet before the next person’s product gets swiped and passes me. This causes me to have a disorganized handbag because i just have to throw the whole lot in there and sort it out later, it’s ANNOYING!!
There will always be other annoying people in the vicinity – it would be in your best interest to try to ignore them, pretend they don’t exist because their impatient attitude when you can’t help that things are moving slowly means nothing to you. :)

Lizabette's avatar

Well, yes, that’s what I do… ignore them and pretend they’re not there and of course I already know it has nothing to do with me. I was just saying it’s annoying for me personally, but I don’t take it personally, I just don’t like it, that’s all. :-)

YARNLADY's avatar

I always schedule my shopping time when it doesn’t matter if it takes one hour or two. I also eat before I go, and have a snack, if necessary, while shopping – which I pay for, of course.

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