Recognize these things? They are the little sticks that you put in between each customer's grocery stash on the conveyer belt at the check out line. I did not know how important these things are until I moved back to Chicago!
Having lived in South Carolina for the past 20 years, we did not get to use these precious items very often. You see, rarely was there a line at the grocery store. Sometimes there would be a line. So every so often the person in back of you might put one of these sticks down after your items to separate theirs from yours. Other times they would just leave some space. The cashiers in South Carolina are smart enough to realize that when there is a large space between items on the conveyor belt that means they are the next customer's groceries.
Apparently the laws of the grocery stick are very different up here in Chicago! I've had to learn it the hard, the rude Chicago way, too. I did not know that after you put your groceries on the conveyor belt that YOU have to put the stick down after your groceries. I've had people behind me pick up the stick and slam it down after my items. I've had people huff and puff because they had to pick up that oh so heavy stick and place it before their items. Frankly, it would have saved them all that effort if they had just left the space after my items, but I guess the cashiers in Chicago aren't smart enough to figure that out. Others have flat out yelled at me. So now, if guess in defiance, I cannot seem to remember to put that darn stick down after my groceries!
The other day I was at Walgreen's. I had a few items on their little check out counter. The woman in back of me had a bunch of items to put up there and she was bound and determined to get every last one of those items on that counter along with mine. She started yelling at me "Where's the stick! Where's the stick!!" There was NO stick! The check out lady had to explain to her that Walgreen's did not have a stick to put down. The lady then proceeded to yell at the cashier inquiring as to why Walgreen's has no stick! She was about to go ballistic over a dang grocery stick!!
Needless to say, I am glad I have a lot more important things to be so anal about other than a grocery stick.
*On a side note, notice the photo above of the grocery sticks. They clearly have advertising on them. I've never noticed advertising on them before. Have you? Usually they have the actually store's name on them. Everything is an advertising billboard now!