MiniCos – Putting the “Super” into Supermarket

15 Mar

For the benefit of giving this blog unnecessary gravitas, please read the following sentence using a news reporters voice in your head:

“For millions of Britons it is the sting in the tail of everyday shopping. The loyalty card question.”

See? That was fun, weren’t it? Now see if you can re-read that sentence, this time as read by Manuel from Fawlty Towers, Margaret Thatcher, or Kris Akabusi.

If top scientists (like the one off the Nintendo DS, for instance) are to be believed, the exercise above will have done three things. By using your imagination, you’ll have stimulated your pre-frontal cortex in your brain, thus making you clever. Secondly, in the case of Kris Akabusi, you’re likely to have slipped in the word “AWOOOOGA!”, even if only at a deep, subconscious level, somewhere in the sentence. Lastly, you’ll have worked out what I mean by “loyalty card question”.

Don’t get me wrong. I fully appreciate that the guys on the checkouts have to ask if you’ve got a Clubcard, a Nectar Card or a whoever card upon pain of a massive bollocking, and I appreciate that there are people out there who genuinely have forgotten whether or not they have a loyalty card, but it still gets rather frustrating when you say “No.” over and over again, especially when it’s the same guy who’s asking, and you’ve known him for years.

That, and lets face facts here, saying “No.” over and over again shows a complete lack of imagination, which is exactly the sort of thing that would get you into Dr Kawashima’s bad books.

Here are my top 10 alternatives to saying No, with practical advise for using them in bold italics.

Q) DO YOU HAVE A LOYALTY CARD, SIR/MADAM?

Ten possible answers:

  1. Yes. If you have a loyalty card
  2. Yes, and there’s NOTHING YOU CAN DO. If you have a loyalty card, and a disposition towards megalomania

  3. That’s none of your business, “Jonny”. If suspicious of the assistants true identity

  4. Ich habe mein Nektarkart verlosen. If an Austrian tourist whose forgotten their loyalty card

  5. Wouldn’t you like to know? If flirting (emphasis on “you”), or you’re from Balamory

  6. Shouldn’t you be catching real criminals, like murderers and rapists? If you’ve mistakenly confused the till assistant for a traffic warden

  7. No, but can I interest you in my business card? If you’re one of these cretins who believes that every waking moment is a business networking opportunity

  8. Yes I do, but I forgot it, is there any way I can get the points added if I ring a special number or if I come in next week? Cos if I don’t get these points I’m doing my shopping at Asdas from now on etc. If you are the daft brush I invariably get stuck behind in Partick Sainsbury’s every bloody Saturday morning

  9. No I don’t, but I’d really bloody love one. If you don’t have a loyalty card but do have a tendency for sarcasm

  10. I do actually, however given the situation I would advise less of the small talk, and more of the handing over of the cigarettes and cash. If committing an armed robbery of a supermarket till, Raffles the Gentleman Thief stylee

If you can think of any other outstanding rebukes to inane supermarket questions, why not add it via the comments?

Next time on Explainin’ The Cosmos – What to do when you say you don’t need a hand to pack, and the checkout lady starts crying!

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