The Self-Checkout Experience – Losing Sanity

Filtered Beauty – Technology Masking Imperfections

The World Is On Fire and We’re Stuck in the Flames

Dark Light

I don’t understand where the fuck this self-checkout thing became the standard means of purchasing shit from retailers in the modern era. I understand, of course, why corporations are desperate to encourage consumers to go through the monotony of scanning and bagging their own shit, but I’m baffled that the self-checkout experience has become the standard.

I’ve heard it explained away as ‘pro-consumer’ in the past, in that it offers those who aren’t looking to deal with another human 😠 a means of getting out with merchandise, but that feels like a lazy explanation at best. Far closer to reality is that these retail stores realized that they could save money on the number of people needed to staff the front of the store by having consumers do part of the work.

Stop Talking To Me

There’s this trend of people talking to my face while I’m outside, and it simply must stop. I have zero interest in you and your existence, or to hear the dribble that escapes your lips. This comes to a formidable head when I’m getting a haircut.

For some reason, haircuts only come with small-talk, where the hairdresser feels a need to talk about the weather, traffic, work, and literally anything else. I just grunt and grimace, trying to make it clear that socializing is an exhausting event that I have no interest in, and they keep trying for the entirety of the time. I don’t like this. You don’t want to hear my opinion; I damn near guarantee it.

Shut the hell up, cut my damn hair, and I’ll tip the fuck out of you.

It’s not as though the self-checkout aisles are open along with staffed checkout counters – far too often, I’ve found that if you want to escape the hellhole with items intact, you need to do some labor on your own. You’d think, since I’m now expected to do part of the fucking job in lieu of the store, I’d be offered some type of reach-around, or at least a damn discount since I’m now saving the store money.

Nope. Pay full price, check out your own shit. Sometimes a store worker will watch you struggle desperately with scanning items that need specialized inputs, mouth agape while quietly thanking their stars that they’re mere observers in this damnable hellscape of an event. You’re doubly fucked if there are age-restricted items that you’re trying to purchase – now you’re stuck waving your arms about like a drowning victim to find an employee.

Other times, you’re the only one seemingly in existence and we’re all just trusting that people aren’t simply walking out the front doors with unpaid merchandise. Like anyone wants to deal with out-of-control cops getting called in and shooting anything that reminds them that they excel in precisely nothing.

Now, this shit has all been heralded as some form of convenience for consumers, the idea that we get to do our own damn work, and somehow most mouth-breathers have taken the self-checkout experience in stride. What the fuck is next?

Corporations want to save money from needing to stock items, or even sort them? Just let the trucks toss the shit they’re carrying into a massive freezer and have the customers walk around and try to find what they need. Sure, a few customers might get lost in a mountain of sausage and freeze to death, but that’s a risk that the stores are more than willing to take.

Fuck stores altogether, actually. Just herd some animals into a warehouse and give customers a knife and a wheelbarrow. Good fucking luck everyone, we’re saving money. If you need lumber, take the hatchet, and walk into those dark woods over there. Bring the trees back and we’ll let you run the sawmill. Why not expand the self-checkout experience to a whole new paradigm?

I would continue, but we now have an unexpected item in the bagging area.

Image credit – Robert Redd via Twitter

1 comment
  1. Retailer should offer a discount to patrons who are willing to supply their own reusable bags and use self-checkout lanes. I do like the option of self-checkout but agree with your article.

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