The 1900’s was an amazing time in the world.  We did so many great things with technology that over time we’ll look back and say, “that was incredible.”  From microwave ovens, to cell phones, to air conditioning, to you name it, and it happened.  Our world, I think, drastically improved with all of these great things and many more, in the last century.
But my friends, we still have a long way to go.
Because of this….

The Self-Checkout line.  Dear God, we have a really long way to go.
The mission is pretty simple.  Scan your items, put them in the bag, and pay for it.
Sometimes the simplicity is the problem.  This sign should be up at all self-checkouts.

OK, that is not that hard to do.  But, this is what happens literally every time I get in line.

Recently, the grocery store was packed and the self-checkout was open with 4 stations and I was the second in line.  To my left, a very sweet lady actually just stared at the machine so long I asked her if she was OK, because I thought she was sleeping or in a trance.  She said, “I don’t know where to start.”  Then, one of the workers came over and showed her how to get started.  He walked off and she started staring again at the machine.
Meanwhile, the lady next to her, had coupons in her hand and kept asking the machine, “where do I put this?” No reply, obviously.  “Sir, where do I put my coupons?”  No reply.
Back to the first lady, she was still staring at the machine.  Had. Not. Moved.
To the right, success.  A family had come through, gotten their items and were gone.  I am next, success.  Or at least I thought it was.
The two on the left, silent Bob and Screaming Mary, were still doing their thing.  The new guy had his wife roll up in a shopping cart that looked like they were going to feed the Titans offensive line.  The 4th self-checkout, was a kid, who had no idea how to scan an item.  He was holding the item in the air, looking like a kid playing with a toy airplane as it comes in for a landing.
“Jesus, are we watching a Twilight Zone episode?” Was the question from the guy behind me in line.
By now, this is my look.
The lady arguing with the machine with the coupons, literally just walked away.
The other lady, silent Bob, finally started scanning.  The kid was now on his cell phone and the couple getting ready to feed the Titans, were halfway through their 4, 355 items. I quickly walked to the open check-out line, scanned my 15 items and was done.  I looked back at the faces in line, now about 10 people waiting and wondered if they were thinking what I was thinking.
Man, we have a long way still to go.

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