February 24, 2008
Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column letting John Beretta and Jim Byers know they figured out our riddle. For those who read Monday’s column, here are the answers the local brainiacs figured out:1) A towel.2) The letter “e”.3) The man wrote “Your exact weight” on the paper.4) A river.For those who have no idea about this, the rest of the column is for you.***We are, simply put, frustrated with overcrowded grocery stores. It seems like every grocery store we go to these days is completely overrun with people scrambling to get the last frozen pizza or carton of orange juice. The deli counter is always mobbed, the bakery is packed, and the pharmacy is a sea of people sniffling and coughing all over the place. And don’t even get us started on the lines. Usually lines don’t bother us. We patiently wait in lift lines, banks lines, and post office lines, but grocery store lines really seem to irk us for some reason. Once we’re finally done piling up our necessary food items, the real challenge begins when it comes time to pick a check-out line. We desperately scan for the illuminated numbers which direct us to the open lines and then quickly notice that the line of waiting customers has extended past the tabloids, all the way back to the Wheat Thins sale rack. The self check-out lines tend to be a bit shorter, but experience has taught us that those lines beceome even more trecherous if you have over five items. It takes about 10 minutes for us to scan in a couple of tomatoes and, before we know it, the machine is promting us to wait for assitance from a cashier. So much for quick and easy. So, like cattle, we assume our position in the herd and rest our elbows on the cart as we prepare for the long wait. Finally we make it to the checkout. Have you ever noticed that the conveyor belt leading to the register is one of the most territorial places on earth?As soon as we start loading our items on to the belt the person in front of us will shoot us a look like we are infringing on their territory. If our milk gets a little to close to their frozen pees they quickly reach for the plastic divider and slam down a barrier. Apparently there is an unspoken rule that a barrier must be set in place between groceries because space alone is not enough. Sometimes, just for fun, we will load our food on to the belt and see how long it takes the person in front of us to throw down the divider. We will place our first item exactly three inches from their pile and see how nervous they get as our items creep towards the scanner. Without fail the divider always gets put in place and we are left to revel in the results of our little experiment. So, when we take a step back, we realize that the whole grocery store experience is a lesson in human nature. It’s survival of the fittest out there and if you aren’t equipped with the right amount of patience you will never make it out alive. ***We have a Happy Birthday! going out from Terri and Debbi to their friend: They wrote: “Hey Summit Up Land, we want to wish a welcome back from her surgery to Kathy Franklin (she is five weeks out and doing great) and to put icing on for this angel we all know and love, Kathy will be 53 years old this Wednesday, so if you see her, give her a soft hug (watch the incisions) and wish her a happy birthday – we are all better people with your in our lives.”***We out on this Monday, thinking the grocery store business is a good one to be in. E-mail us at email@example.com.