Friday, October 14, 2011

What would you have done?

Last week, I was in line at the supermarket check-out counter.  I was the next customer and was getting my card ready when I get a tap on my shoulder.

An older man asked if he could go ahead of me because he only had 2 items.  (I had a basket of 12 items.)

I pointed him to the counter beside us, which was empty.  (It was for senior citizens.)

He went there and the lady at the register refused to allow him to pay through there.  (Which means, he wasn't that old.)

He had to go back to our line -- by then, my items were already being punched in.

I could feel his impatience and hear his grumbling but I knew I didn't have anything to be worried about because I lined up and patiently waited for my turn.

On the drive home, I asked my sister what she would have done -- she narrated a similar incident during SM City's 3-day sale.  (SM Advantage Card holders get an extra 10% off during the first 2 hours of the first day and it gets really crazy.) -- A lady tapped the person ahead of my sister and asked her if she could pay first because she only had a handful of items.  (My sister had a cart and the lady in front of my sister had a lot of items as well.)

The person (ahead of my sister) pointed to the very long line behind her and told the lady to ask everyone first.  The lady got the hint and just lined up properly.

I know that I would be perceived as inconsiderate and unkind -- but, if we allowed people* to cut in line, what would be the point of lining up in the first place?

I have experienced having a squirmy Seth and a tantrum-y Anya while lining up for something but I have never, ever used them as an excuse to get ahead of a line (I have used them to get a free sample of lechon skin, though).  I line up and wait for my turn and try to manage them as best I can.

*The only exception, perhaps -- would be if the person asking is very elderly -- but, then again, most places already have an exclusive counter for senior citizens.

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