Last week I had encounters with the two kinds of people I most hate in the world. And, lucky me, they both happened at the time.
I was at the grocery store picking up a prescription. There were two people in front of me, and the transaction seemed to be going slowly. Not horribly slowly; I was absorbed enough in my own woolgathering that it didn’t really register as slow. But, apparently, all time stopped for the lady behind me.
Now, I hadn’t been there that long, but apparently I had stepped into line as precisely the correct moment to avoid a line. Because three or four people quickly queued up behind me. The pharmacy in my grocery store is next to the employee time clock, and just as the first woman in front of me was finishing up, a manager came on duty and clocked in. Now, I’m not sure how anyone would know he was a manager; he seemed to be dressed in the same khakis and blue shirt as everyone else, but the woman behind me instantly knew what he was. “Excuse me,” she said to him. “Can you get someone else to ring at the pharmacy? The girl there seems a little… slow.”
Now, this girl did look a little slow to me, as in dim-witted. And when, I have to ask, did they start letting just anyone work at the pharmacy? At one point my prescriptions were only handed to me by actual pharmacists. But now, it seems like they just let any register-jockey man the desk.
Anyway, the manager, a fresh-faced young man in a freshly pressed shirt, was eager to help out this lady, so he went over to the pharmacy window and addressed this only employee who was typing things into a computer. By her equally dull-witted expression it was clear that she, too, was just a lackey, and not a pharmacist.
Now, I didn’t catch what he said to her, but I’m assuming it was something to the effect of, “Hey, can you stop whatever you’re doing and start ringing out some of the people in this line?” And I didn’t hear what she said to him, but I heard the rest of the exchange loud and clear.
FRESH-FACED MANAGER: Okay, put it this way, I’m not asking you, I’m telling you.
APATHETIC EMPLOYEE: You can’t tell me.
FFM: Yes, yes I can.
AE: No you can’t. You can ASK me, but you can’t tell me!
But, she got up from the computer and moseyed over to the register. This is kind of person I hate #1. The person who openly hates their job and, by extension, everyone they have to deal with as part of their job. One assumes that she was told that speaking directly to the public would be part of her job when she was hired; maybe she could try not to be so contrary about it. I mean, everyone hates their job at some point, but Jesus, it’s your JOB. You get paid to do it. Just fucking do it.
But, as much as I dislike the woman now “serving” me, I hate the woman behind me even more (she is kind of person I hate #2).
As soon as the manager and this dumbass employee get into it, she starts huffing and puffing behind me. “Unbelievable!” she says, just loud enough for the people directly around her to hear. “Unbelievable! If I talked to my boss that way, I’d be fired in a minute! Unbelievable!”
This is the kind of passive-aggressive harpy who never confronts the object of her scorn directly; she only mumbles about the situation, hoping that the people directly in front and behind her will take the bait and initiate a bitch-fest. She’s hoping that I’ll chime in with “I know! You just don’t get good service these days!” or some such shit.
The really crappy thing is that this kind of person usually pipes up when the person behind the counter is doing the best they can. Like they have some crazy return and refund they have to coax out of their computer; something that only comes up once in a lifetime. In these situations I like to say something really cynical to the huffer and puffer; like “I know! How dare she not know those beans were 36 cents a can, and not 38! The nerve!” Sometimes they get that I’m making fun of them, sometimes not.
But, back to this pharmacy situation, the lady behind the counter wasn’t doing the best she could; she was barely doing anything at all. So I just kept my mount shut.
And once again wished I could shoot laser beams out of my eyes.