Thursday, 14 October 2010

The One with the Self Service Till

Another trip to the supermarket yesterday and this time I had the boy with me. I was in a bit of a hurry to get back for teatime so I went to one of those self service tills. That'll save some time I thought, there's no queue there!

I now understand why!

They are the most frustrating thing known to man.

Anything alcoholic, sharp or medical has to be verified by a member of staff so they can see you're over 21 (you can buy all these things at 18 so why it's 21, and in some shops I notice 25, I don't know?)

Anything loose that needing to be weighed has to be found on the screen.

And anything on special offer just blows it's mind!

Twice I had to "wait for assistance" because it didn't scan my butter properly and then didn't understand the price of my chicken!

Then to cap it all I put my handbag down to get my purse out to pay, with nowhere specific to rest it I placed it on the conveyor belt, this set the motion off and it sailed down towards my shopping which was bunched up and squashed at the end with no one to pack it. Of course my handbag wasn't scanned and the electronic voice went completely berserk

"Unexpected item in bagging area. Please remove. Please remove."

I thought for one terrible moment I was in an episode of Doctor Who and she was going to turn into a Dalek and exterminate me!

With my handbag retrieved she started shouting at me again,

"Please scan your loyalty card"

"Yeah alright love, let me get it out first"

I was talking back to her!

They say the first sign of madness is talking to yourself.

It's not!

It's not even talking to the machine.

The first sign of madness is even contemplating using one...


  1. LOL those machines drive me nuts. I now have far more empathy for the assistants who have to use them all day long. Few things make me go grrrr, but they are one of them.

  2. This made me laugh so hard. I had the same experience using one. Soooo frustrating. The good thing is that now whenever I'm fretting that the check-out line is going a bit slow, I take a glance over at the "self service" tills and suddenly I'm completely cool about waiting :)

  3. Sums up the madness of the experience perfectly! I also love the way that everyone in the queue behind disdainfully looks on, as you argue with the machine (as if to say, what a moron) and then a few minutes later are also swearing at a robotic voice.

  4. Too true. They look at you like you're mad then do it themselves! You can't help yourself. You'll be glad to hear today's trip to the shops passed by without incident as I went to a till with a real person behind it.