Inerrant Rampancy

Just another weblog

Everybody’s Special!

…at the supermarket, anyway.

This is just a quick post to say, “I hate retarded supermarket baggers.”

Now calm down, I know that you all hate that word, “retarded”, probably because one time at camp you worked with some “Special Needs” kids and now you’re in awe of anyone with an IQ under 70, but this time I’m not using the word to refer to people who only happen to suck at their supermarket-bagger job; I’m using the word to refer to people who suck at their supermarket-bagger jobs because they are, in fact, clinically retarded.

Seriously, I’m all in favor of letting people live long and happy lives no matter how mentally impaired they are. It’s obvious that intelligence is not a requirement for existence or happiness or even success (how else would you explain Democrats, Republicans, the Religious Right, or Paris Hilton?), and so even those with minimal functional intelligence have the right to take part in society doing whatever it is they happen to be good at.

However, it seems like they don’t have to go through any training other than “How Not To Bite Customers” and “Initiating Awkward Conversations”. I understand that when my bagger is done with his or her shift he or she is not going home to solve complex geometric proofs, but would it kill the store to train him or her to not put eggs on the bottom? Seriously, there are like six rules, tops, that apply to bagging.

1. Ask what kind of bag.
2. Don’t put everything into one bag if it won’t all fit.
3. Don’t make bags too heavy.
4. Solid, heavy items on the bottom.
5. Eggs are neither solid nor heavy.
6. Dropping items from above your head because they make a cool sound is not appropriate.

That’s it, that’s all I want from my bagger. I don’t even really care about the awkward conversation because honestly, I get that on the train anyway. I just want you to be good at your job, just as I want the girl at the register to be good at her job. I don’t care that she’s a college graduate with a Master’s in Art Therapy and you’re a 26 year old with Down’s Syndrome. In the supermarket, you are all there to properly ring up and bag my groceries, and if you can’t do that then I’m not entirely sure why you’re still there. Is this some kind of Affirmative Action for the disabled? Are they going to give a guy in a wheelchair a job as an accountant if he’s got no training in accountancy?

It’s not like these retarded kids are incapable of doing the job (in fact, they are probably capable of doing jobs which are even more difficult, they just get treated like they can’t and are never allowed to try), they just don’t get trained at all. It’s like there’s some weird assumption that because we want disabled people to be able to do anything non-disabled people can do, we automatically assume they can, even if it’s something they’ve never trained for! My mom always told me I could do anything I wanted, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have to work at it first.

I think in the attempt to assure the mentally impaired of a “normal” life we’ve forgotten that they aren’t “normal” at all. If they were we wouldn’t have to assure them of anything! They aren’t helpless or hopeless, but they need extra attention and can’t just be thrown at the end of the conveyor belt at Whole Foods. They’ve got to be taught that you don’t drop the eggs. More importantly, they have to be taught to stop dropping my fucking eggs.


January 14, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. uggh, your argument here reminds of me people who complain/send back food at McDonald’s or somewhere of equal nutritional value. Which is 85% of the time, women. (Yay, for making stuff up)

    Except that in the McDonald’s case, I can’t pick the people I want making my food in the back (“Yeah, uh give me a number 1, and have that big dude with the mustache make the burger, the hard working teen make those fries, and you, yeah you the cashier get my drink over there at the free refill station, make it a Dr. Pepper”)

    So if you don’t like the look of the guy/girl bagging/cashiering, go to a different aisle. I do it all the time. It’s choice. America.

    By and large though, I’ve had nothing but decent experiences with baggers, and here’s the other catch, it beats (I’m not even going to say it) doing it yourself.

    Eggs are like 3 dollars; they get paid next to nothing; get over it.

    Comment by Dirk Diggler | January 16, 2009 | Reply

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