I try not to stress over “little” things, but sometimes the “little” things are what make the world a better place.

This post brings to light a problem which is not bound by age, race, gender or geographic boundaries. It’s a subtle societal abnormality that can be witnessed by anyone, literally every time we venture into the world of commerce…

It’s the topic of grocery store etiquette, or any store for that matter.

Today’s society has become so incredibly self-obsessed, it’s actually quite disgusting. When we visit sacred stores like Walmart, it seems as though manners fall by the wayside. This not okay.

Let’s Talk About Phones…

When you’re in line to pay, get off your phone. Why? Because it’s obnoxious, and rude. Unless someone is calling to tell you someone is sick or that someone was in a horrible accident, call back. First off, those who are two feet away from you don’t want to hear your stupid conversation. Second, you can at least acknowledge the cashier who’s ringing up your Twinkies.

Most people can’t text and drive a car well. Surprisingly, they also can’t push a shopping cart and text very well either. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had people run into me with their cart because they had their face buried in a screen. This leads me to my next point…

If you have to stop to text, or to review your shopping list, MOVE OUT OF THE WAY! Don’t just stop in the middle of the aisle. Some seem to think they are the only person in the store. The same goes for indecisive shoppers. Look around as you’re standing there pondering what you need. If there is a line of six people waiting on you, MOVE!

This same concept also applies to in-person conversations. I’m always excited to see you’ve ran into your old pal who you haven’t seen since elementary school, but take your conversation out of the middle of the aisle.

Back on the subject of phones, shut your damn music off, or put your headphones in. This happens more with kids and teens, but I’ve seen a fair share of adults who do it too. More often than not, the overly loud choice of music is usually rap with extremely profane lyrics. I’m not judging the music preferences of others, but keep it to yourself because other people don’t want to hear it. AND, stores spend lots of money on Muzak systems for your listening enjoyment. It makes them sad if you don’t listen.

Shopping Carts:

When you’re shopping, please don’t leave your cart in the middle of the aisle while you walk off to look at things. And when you’re done shopping, put the cart back in the corral! I don’t need anymore dings in my car doors. You probably don’t either.

If you think these things are overly critical, let me know. I’d love to hear why! All I’m saying is you’re probably not the only one in the store. Just be courteous!

And another thing: Are you a cart gawker?

Cart gawker is a word I made up to define the person who has to look in everyone else’s cart to see what they’ve got. When you’re in line, or when you stop your cart in the aisle, watch how people act. More often than not, you’re going to see someone who thoroughly examines the contents of your cart. Apparently they think you found something better than they did.

This isn’t really a pet peeve, but I find it interesting that people do it. Kids are the worst, but adults are just as bad here too. If you want to have some fun with, put some really obscure items in your cart. Let these people draw some really interesting judgements about you.

As with many of my articles, once you’ve been made aware of these behaviors you won’t be able to unsee them. Remember…Change starts with you!

~ Marty ~

(You probably thought I was going to say something about going to the store in your pajamas and flip flops. Nope. That’s perfectly fine)


Marty Augustine - Writer, Author, Entetrtainer

Marty is a Kansas City based writer and entertainer.

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