Since moving from the greater Green Hills area to the north side, we have had few regrets. We live in a relatively small neighborhood (Salemtown) bordering on another small-much-better-known neighborhood, Germantown. The service and COFFEE-house industry has not yet discovered our neighborhood, but truth is, we don’t have to drive all that far for most of what we need, including comedy.
I’m trying to have one of those personal paradigm shifts regarding one of our neighborhood institutions, the 8th Avenue Krogers. If you look at this Krogers as a place to buy groceries, where fast-service and wondrous food selection are part of the brand, you will be sorely disappointed. If you view ‘our’ Krogers as a foundry for comedy, this location has the goods.
Start with the worst-designed parking lot in the world. I wouldn’t be surprised if Krogers had held an April 1st contest for stupid parking lot design, offering 12 loaves of Bunny Bread to the winner, and then actually utilized the winning design. More wasted space cannot be found (outside of the Metro Council chambers on a Tuesday night) in the greater Nashville area.
This Krogers does offer an incredible selection of white bread and jugged sugar-laden juices, not to mention the special high-sodium aisle offering NaCL-laden food-stuffs guaranteed to boost the old blood pressure at least 20 points or they’ll pay for your next blood pressure check.
All of that is prelude to the check out lines. A couple of days ago, I ambled over to our Krogers to help feed my wife’s addiction for Diet Cokes (my theory, crazy as it may sound, is that if you buy a whole lot of D. Coke at a time, rather than buying ONE can at a time (someone else’s theory), you can actually save money).
Anyway, I made it to the Express checkout line (15 items or less) where I was second in line behind a slow-moving woman who took her sweet time unloading her 19 items on the conveyor belt. These 19 items didn’t include any dupe’s where you can say, well..these are the same, they count as one. I had plenty of time to count and re-count her items as she slowly slowly slowly loaded the conveyor, so I’m pretty sure I had an accurate count.
The cashier toted up the items, and was about to announce the total, when she decided to have a meandering conversation with my-quickly-becoming-least-favorite customer ever.
“I don’t know about corporal punishment..I’m just not sure if it belongs in the school”…”honey, I used to think it was important, but now I’m not sure”.
Let me just say that I abridged the above conversation in the interest of readability. Needless to say, my position on corporal punishment was rapidly evolving listening to this conversation.
After the conversation spun down into a puddle of thrice-chewed cliches, when the check-out clerk managed to mention that the total was $61.24, our favorite customer decided it was time to search for her checkbook. Of course, her purse could have been used to shoplift all 19 items on the conveyor belt, had she been of the shoplifting bent.
After she found her checkbook, and she FINALLY wrote the check, the check-out clerk realized she had made a mistake, and the ACTUAL total was $82.62. This precipitated another mining mission into the purse-of-the-abyss….Just about the time check number two was about to be written, my FAVORITE customer decided she needed two packs of some kind of cigarette. I couldn’t hear the actual brand because my blood pressure had elevated to the point where my hearing was stymied by the ringing in my ears.
Seventeen minutes to the second after I entered the express lane, my four items were finally checked out. I smiled meekly to the cashier as she scanned my stuff. Words just don’t suffice for what I wanted to say…
I’m still working on that paradigm-shift stuff…..