Thursday, March 6, 2008

Assume The Position

I used to build up PC’s from scratch and sell them. At one time you could save a lot of money that way but these days prices can not be beat piecemeal.

There used to be a store back home called CompUSA that I really liked, they had a wide variety of computer hardware at really good prices and I went there often, sometimes more than once per day.

As much as I liked them though they had this one really annoying practice; when you left the store they would cross check your receipt to the contents of your bag. Now there are some stores that have cashiers stands as far as the eye can see and who knows what you did between checking out and the door, so the bag checking thing makes sense in those stores, I still don’t like to endure it but at least it makes sense!

However this CompUSA had two, count them two, check out stands and they were both within 10 feet of the door. The guy checking your bag could see you clearly for all five of the steps you took from the cashier stand to the exit.

Ok, rules just for rules sake really, really annoy me. So, being the sharing kind of person that I am I felt the compulsion to share my annoyance with this stupid policy. As usual though, I made my point with humor. So I started with making sure I got the door "guards" attention after I checked out but before I picked up my bag. I would say to him, “Ok the cashier has my bag, I have not touched it yet” then I would pick it up and start walking towards him, I would keep saying, “OK, I have stuck nothing else in the bag; See, I’m not stealing anything… still not stealing…” as I walked towards him. Then when I got there and he started checking the bag I would say “OH man! I can NOT believe you are STILL gonna check my bag! You WATCHED me! How could I steal anything while you WATCHED me?”
“Sorry sir, store policy”

So to escalate the great receipt war I got to where I would just hand him the bag and then assume “the position” by the door.
“Sir, what are you doing?”
“Aren’t you going to frisk me?”
“Uh, no.”
“Why not? I mean only the shadow knows what I may have shoved into my pockets in the six steps between here and the register! I mean why is it that I could only invisibly shove things into my shopping bag and not into my pockets?”
“Uhhhhh, frisking is not store policy sir.”

I only “assumed the position twice”. The next time I came into the store the door guard was gone! I asked why the door was unguarded, I mean any second now a horde of mongels could break through and ransack the place and did they not feel naked with out the mighty door guard?

The cashier who by now knew me all too well told me that no, I had single handedly changed store policy. The local manager had sent security footage of my antics to corporate and they realized they were annoying the hell out of loyal customers for no good reason. Policy cancelled.

I did it! I did it with out anger or malice, without pickets or letter writing campaigns. Just acting out with my warped sense of humor made the world an infinitesimally less stupid place.

I am still proud.


Beth said...

Look what you accomplished just by being you! ;) Really, it made no sense at all, and I love sarcasm...

I can say I know the guy who changed policy at compUSA! I remember those stores...

Crazymamaof6 said...

whoohoo good for you! i'd probably be horrified while you did that if i was shopping with you. BUT super thrilled to not have to do that. can you do that at COSTCO too please? really it gets old. all i do is walk by the food court. come on people! you are killing me! on that note have you been to Fry's electronics? same thing.sure you walk down a deserted hall way to leave but the aisles are all blocked off, you couldn't steal anything if you wanted to. or get back in to use the bathroom. you ahve to go back to the beginning to gain access. yeah. WAY TO GO! good JOB!

SuperCoolMom said...

Is CompUSA gone? and I'm always afraid that someone will steal my new book and my croissants out of my cart while I'm getting the lid for my soda or eating my pizza at COSTCO...I WANT them to catch that guy, you know, IF it ever happens.

Tari said...

way to go! I hate rules for rules sake. And I hate when people have no common sense about them.

Andie said...

that is awesome! LOL

kay said...

that's awesome!!! i hate receipt checkers. i'm totally impressed that you were able to change the policy!

oh and thanks for the comment on my sis's blog about my smile. that made me smile! then of course you had to smile. then i smiled again...

Sauntering Soul said...

Great story!

I used to buy most of my computer supplies (which is a limited amount due to my computer illiteracy) from CompUSA too. I'm sad they closed here in Atlanta. One of my regular readers works for their corporate IT department and she's currently looking for a job if you know of anything.

Dizzy Ms. Lizzy said...

They do that receipt checking at Sam's Club also, and it was very annoying! I don't go there any more, and I don't miss having my purchases checked when I'm just trying to get out of the store! :-P

Tanya said...

I don't go to receipt checking stores, but if I did, I think I would enjoy buying things in weird combinations. Like duct tape and sleeping pills.

or bullets and Bibles

or a pregnancy test and beer

It would be interesting to see if people would question your purchases.

Melek said...

i love love LOVE that story!!! and here's why. i was married to an uber tech geek who loved building his own computers. and when they put a Fry's in mere blocks from my house, i knew i was in trouble. For those of you who don't know, Fry's is about 70 million sq feet of electronics, appliances,'s like Best Buy on crack. So, he'd go there (read: WE'D go there) daily. literally. and they were one of those receipt checking stores. and yes, they had the 100 registers so they couldn't tell if you stuffed that oh-so-valuable laser pointer into the bag as you were walking past the other 99 registers, but it was still annoying as hell bc what they'd do is vaguely glance at the receipt, pretend to look in the bag, mark on the receipt and send you on your way. it's just that violation and unspoken insult of "we think you're a thief" that rubbed me the wrong way.

since the divorce, i've been into Fry's exactly ONE time...and totally against my will as they were the only ones who carried the cable i needed.

Rob said...

Beth- It’s not often my antics have a positive outcome.

CrazyMomma- Oh yeah, I can be very good at horrifying the people who go into public with me!

SuperCoolMom-I don’t know if they are all gone but the two I knew of in the Dallas area are closed and apparently at least one of them in Atlanta is gone too.

Tari- I agree and it seems to be getting worse, but that is a rant for another day.

Andi- So glad you enjoyed!

Kay- Now we are both smiling again! :)

Sauntering- I’m not buying the illiteracy thing. Your blog is far too fancy. For your friend, if she speaks English well and is willing to travel I know of MANY things for her.

Mz. Lizzy- I never got the Sam’s thing. I am too much of a capitalist to buy into the concept that I need to jump through hoops to be a “member” for the privilege of shopping there. If my money is not good enough for them then I can find someone else very easily that would love to have it.

Tanya- Now that seriously cracked me up! Brilliant! Pregnancy test and beer! LOL!

Melek- Fry’s, OMG! Yes, a geek Mecca! Pure nerdvana! Yes, their security WIIL make you insane though- especially in the chips area where they have double security. I complained to a manager once and he had a good geek answer. He said one of the reasons their prices were so low is that Fry’s has the lowest slippage (theft) rates in the retail industry.

So you divorced Fry’s too huh? :)

Melek said...

hahaha...i totally divorced Frys...and Best Buy...and CompUSA.