Supermarket anthropology

Deepening the intrigue, Tesco now has ‘ushers’ trying to herd shoppers into particular check-out queues. Competing ‘ushers’ attempt to move shoppers away from those check-outs to queue elsewhere.

I see the whole thing as a challenge.

You’re pushing your trolley along the line of check-outs. Maybe you’ve not decided if you’re ready to leave yet – got everything you came in for? Running through that shopping list in your head. Oh my, I’ve forgotten the dog food… what’s this? I have to line up here, pay, and leave now?

Or you’re busy scanning your environment for possible threats. Am I going to bump into anyone I know who I really don’t want to bump into? (Possibly applies more especially to me than most people). This is when you’re most vulnerable to the ‘ushers’.

Or you’ve got all your shopping and you’re deciding which check-out to use. Do I really want to be served by the flirtatious / truculent / surly / annoying –looking check-out worker?

Well, tough cookies! It’s not your choice!

I find that the ushers bug me more when I’m shopping alone. So there is only one rational explanation for what the check-out ushers are doing:

One usher is trying to match possible dating partners by observing who is waiting in a queue and looking for likely candidates for friendship and maybe more, before directing this person to join them in the queue.

The opposing usher’s objective is to either sabotage these potential matches, or create alternative, malicious pairings, for their own sadistic amusement.

It’s the only plausible explanation.

My advice: Head down, fierce expression on, and don’t take any prisoners when ramming through with your trolley.

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