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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Checkout (06/09/11)

TITLE: A Little Fun at the Grocery Store
By Lynn Moses


A funny thing happened on the way out of the grocery store. Not once, but actually several times which made it that much more amusing each time I checked out of the grocery store.
I didn’t really didn’t like it when stores started calling us by our names. I know from a marketing perspective it was supposed to make us feel like we were getting a more personal shopping experience, but it never really worked for me. I was still in my twenties when I really noticed it happening. At first it scared me; I thought how do they know my name? I finally figured out that it was on my check or credit card. I know, very quick witted of me. Then I just thought, I am too young to be called Mrs. Moses.
The personal touch lost all its ‘personal’ at a particular grocery store that I used to frequent. There was one particular checker who had a difficult time figuring out my last name.
“Thank you for shopping with us today, Mrs. (pause) Mossy,” he would say.
I don’t even think I bothered to correct him the first time. I guess I figured he just read it wrong and it wasn’t a big deal. But subsequent trips to the grocery store sounded something like this:
“Thank you, Mrs. (pause) Mosses.”
“It’s Moses,” I said politely trying to help him out.
Then next time. “Thank you, Mrs. (pause) Moser.”
It’s Moses.”
And the next time “Thank you Mrs. how do you say your last name?”
“Moses, like in the Bible,” I said thinking this would surely be the information he needed to finally understand my name.
“Ok, thank you Mrs. Moss.”
Who hasn’t heard of ‘Moses’?
I could hardly contain myself. It truly seemed impossible, but here it was happening again. It got to be a joke with my husband and me. We would call each other by all the wrong last names we could think of. It even got to the point that I couldn’t go to this checker’s line because the minute I would see him, I started to giggle, just thinking about the next possible iteration of my last name that I would hear.
So while I can understand what the stores were trying to do with this ‘personal touch’, but if their people can’t say the names, it doesn’t feel quite so ‘personal’ if you know what I mean. Attitude is so significant to our well being, so I chose to see the humor in it. The situation did provide for some good story telling and laughter over the years, so all in all it was an agreeable experience. I like to think that the checker might think back to that time when he couldn’t pronounce that crazy lady’s name. Hopefully, it makes him laugh too. Who says you can’t have a little fun at the grocery store?
Proverbs 17:22 - A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength.

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This article has been read 259 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jenna Dawn06/16/11
Cute story. I completely relate, as you might see if you read my last name. Can YOU guess how to pronounce it?! It's rarely pronounced correctly and I usually don't say a word about it at places like the grocery store. I'm wondering why most of the story was in italics.
Lynn Moses06/16/11
re: italics, I think I messed up when I was putting them in with the 's--something went wrong, because only a few things were supposed to be italicized.
Jan Ackerson 06/20/11
I really enjoyed this change-of-pace story, and your very relatable voice.

A few suggestions about the italics: to end italics, bue sure to type [/i] at the end of what you want italicized. To be sure you've typed it correctly, use the 'preview' button to see your entry before it's made permanent by the 'submit' button. And it's really best not to use your real name, because entries are supposed to be anonymous while they're being judged. Perhaps you could have thought of a different easily-mispronounced name.

This was highly amusing, light, and with a lovely little lesson at the end. I enjoyed it a lot.
Phee Paradise 06/20/11
This was a cute story and you did a good job with the humor. I wonder if it might have grabbed my attention more quickly if you had started with the clerk saying the name wrong. Then you could have said why it doesn't feel personal, although you made that point well, at the end. Who hasn't heard of Moses?
Jennifer Hill06/20/11
We bought our house from a Mr. Moses, my kids loved it! Because of the Bible story:) I enjoyed your story. I never like being called by name either, unless I actually know the person.