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Pass the salt

December 5, 2013 - Ron Deuter
Nothing irritates me more than when I am shopping in a big box store — say for example the blue one or the orange one — I need to ask for help.

Often times when I enter these stores not needing any assistance, I can’t walk two feet without someone asking me if I need help. The orange store is famous for this. You can't even walk in the door there without a regular greeting party of about a half dozen orange aprons who apparently have nothing better to do than sway back and forth and try to look awake. Back off already! I just need a freaking furnace filter. Then, on the mile-long walk to the filters, orange aprons pop out from everywhere. Front, back, side-to-side. I'm actually waiting for the day one repels down from the ceiling by their apron strings.

Geez, if only deer hunting were that easy.

The funny thing is, when I actually need an employee for something, I might as well be a stranded motorist in the middle of the desert. Do they all take their smoke break at the exact moment I might actually need help? Or is there some sort of orange apron ritual in the back that we're not supposed to know about?

How about when you actually do find someone and you ask a question beyond the scope of locating an item. You ask and you know immediately the answer they are giving you is complete crap. That happens all the time at the orange box store. I know the guy has no clue what he is talking about, but he sure likes to pretend like he does.

It's gotten to the point where sometimes I just like to mess with them. I ask them a question about something that I already know the correct answer just to hear the absurdity that comes out of their mouth.

How about just being honest and saying you don’t know? It's not like I'm going to make you take off your apron or turn in your tape measure.

So the other night I went into the blue store to pick up a bag of rock salt. I was going to go to the orange store, but didn't feel like dealing with the whole front-door, orange-apron ambush.

I did the customary lap around the joint to try to find salt, but had no luck. When I got back to the front of the store, I asked a clerk where I could find the salt.

She pointed to an aisle near the front entrance. I went over there. No salt. I asked another person. He directed me to look by the snow shovels. No salt. I asked a third person. Sensing my growing frustration, he actually walked me to the salt. Salt pellets for a water softener.

Finally, I went to the front service desk. I told the girl there that she was the fourth person I was asking and I still didn’t have a bag of salt. I told her I would wait at the desk for someone to bring me a bag of salt.

Her response?

She yelled across to the girl at the register asking her if she knew where the salt was, the very same girl I asked the first time.

I walked out.



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