March 20, 2011

Zip It

Most of the time, a weekend is defined within five minutes of when you arrive home on Friday night.  This past Friday afternoon, I came home in a pretty good mood.  However, Jan walked in the door loaded for bear.

In her second to last year of her teaching career, she is trying to educate a bunch of 13 year olds at the local middle school.  I used to be 13, and remember that I spent most of time pissed because I was no longer a cute little boy, and pretty far away from being an adult.  This meant that physically, I resembled Larry Talbot half-way in his transition from mild-mannered human into the wolfman.  Add to this, a case of raging hormones, and I was pretty tough to deal with.

Jan had been on the losing end of a war of wills with these little creatures, and was in a terrible mood.  We managed to get through the evening and were determined to start fresh on Saturday morning with renewed good attitudes.

But then we realized we had to do grocery shopping.

This means going to two stores.  The first is Walmart ... because, we just have to.  The other is another smaller store where we pick up our produce.  Walmart tends to coat all of their produce in a thick coating of wax, which I presume extends the shelf life.  Coating everything in wax also means they don't have to invest in those produce sprayers that you see at all of the other stores.  You know, the shower that comes on just as you're trying to pick something up?  One store we go to warns us of the upcoming drenching by playing a snippet of "Singin' In The Rain" right before the sprayers start.

Anyway, we finished at Walmart and went on to our second store.  Normally, I don't mind the place, but in the last couple of months there has been an annoying development at the checkout line.

The cashier asks you your Zip Code.

The first couple of times, it didn't bother me, because I knew it was probably for some marketing demographics thing they were doing.  But now, three months later,  they do it every ... single ... fucking ... time.  Several weeks ago, I started giving them every Zip Code in the immediate area besides ours.  But yesterday, I had absolutely had it with this stupid question.  So, Jan and I went to the checkout line, and ...

Cashier:  Can I have your Zip Code?

Me:  85374

Cashier:  Huh?  Where's that?  That's not your Zip Code.

Me:  Surprise, Arizona, and yes it is.  My wife and I are reverse Snowbirds.  We spend the winter where it's freezing and then go south for the summer where it's blazing hot.

Cashier:  Sir, just give me your real Zip Code.

Me:  Tell me your Zip Code first.

Cashier:  That's none of your business.

Me:  My point exactly.

At this point, I'm apparently making a scene, so the manager walks up ...

Manager:  Is there a problem?

Cashier:  This man won't give me his Zip Code.

Me:  That's right.  And if you don't stop this stupid crap, I'll leave all my stuff on the belt and never come back here again.

Manager:  Just check him out.

So, we spent an awkward several minutes getting out of the store.  Jan asked me later if it was worth it.  And I told her that no matter how stupid, sometimes you just have to make a stand.

Small victories.


  1. Holy crap! I can't believe that cashier gave you an attitude. I give false zip codes all the time ... I usually use 90210, 'cause it's the first one that comes to mind, other than my own ...

    Oh! And my local newspaper requires gender/age info to get on their site - I usually enter that I'm, like, a man born in 1932 ... I'm not. :)

  2. I usually have fun with telemarketers in a similar way over the phone. My mood at the time determines the extent of my vulgarity.

    "Excuse me ma'am, would you like to learn about the exciting new offers from Chase bank?"

    "Depends. Let me ask my husband... whose balls I was just lightly fondling. I mean, I suppose we could let him choose what excites him more. Your offers, or my ball fondling."


    "I'll be right back.."

    dial tone.