It’s Only a Rumor…

“Excuse me, where can I find sardines?”
“With the tuna fish? Okay, where’s that, now?”

Rumors 2

Some days, up is down and down is up. That would describe my ‘grocery shopping’ life, since my grocer reorganized product on its shelves ….. again.

One day, you know where everything is, the next day, it’s a new landscape. I had conquered the layout from the last reshuffling and felt an inner calmness navigating  the store’s aisle maze.  I could find the lo-fat Graham crackers, sauerkraut was just around the end cap from our favorite high fibre and heart healthy cereals. The no-salt pretzels were in an odd place, but I knew where to find them.

Rumors 3

I had the store geography ‘down pat’, didn’t even need the smart phone app to direct me. And that was important because while we shop twice weekly, on Wednesday I fly solo. My shopping orders are to ‘get in, get it and get out’. I got good at it.

My efficiency even allowed some chat time with stockers Jim in bananas, or Annie in toothpaste. Barnabus, the beer guy, was favored with a quick quip, too. Incidentally, beer has never been relocated and many folks are happy about that, mostly guys, although their internal instinct takes them directly to beer, no matter where it’s shelved..

Yes, all was well until this change, the second in a year. Shopping now is a slow trek through a labyrinth of new colors, shapes and sizes. Where once I was accustomed to the ‘going in, grabbing and getting out’, now I’m adrift, lost somewhere between 11A and 16B.

‘Aisle directors’ stand by to help. How embarrassing when they answer in booming voices, “Suppositories? Just around the corner from adult diapers!”. Yikes!

But, I’m determined to learn the new layout, and I’m succeeding with my Senior mind. It’s just another one of life’s healthy tasks, teaching me to be resilient rather than cranky. However, I’m just a bit uncertain about the rumor mill (aisles 8-10) .

The next time the store is reorganized, so goes the scuttlebutt, the aisles will be set up by shape: flat product with flat, round with round, and figurines together (ex. Mrs. Butterworth syrup, Honey Bear honey). All boxed product in the same location, and screw top items will have their own aisle.

Rumors 1

It’s just a rumor, now, but I’ll accept the challenge, if it happens.  Besides, what are my choices if I want to fill my own randomly arranged pantry shelves with survival food for Life’s next challenge?

Steve
October 2017
Stephen.Bottcher@gmail.com

To shoppers everywhere who accept change as inevitable

Published by

srbottch

Retired in 2013 after 5 years as an elementary school teacher and 40 years as a sales representative. My essays/stories are a way to communicate through the telling of personal experiences. One reader said about my essays, "...these are like a cold sip during a marathon run, simple, real life events". Enjoy the run!

31 thoughts on “It’s Only a Rumor…”

  1. I love this one…so true.
    Do you know the owners does the changes on purpose “marketers”want you to see as many new products as possible and yield temptation.
    By the way do you noticed cheapest products are located in the lower rack.The branded ones and most expensive ones are just in front of your eyes. ?
    Same with beer and water : The location should be opposite the entrance so you have to cross all products you do not need but you might buy because the colour, the advertising you have seen on TV, the greed ( ? ) treat( ? ) attracts you.
    Last advice : never go shopping for food if you are hungry but after lunch… !
    The difference in your caddy could be 100 $ more.

    All the best my friend.I prefer the way you describe things than the way I explain.
    🙊

    Like

    1. No I just make up stuff, whereas you give the technical reasons. A good combo! By the way, if you like to cook or enjoy grocery stores, you would love ours. It’s called Wegmans. Find them on the web. I’m putting away our dishes now and listening to Verdi on our classical radio music station. Beautiful. Now I’m the romantic. 😉

      Like

    1. I got to tell you. I woke up at 3:00am and started thinking that story stunk. I couldn’t get back to sleep and planned to revise or delete it when I got up. Instead, I saw someone liked it so I just kept it. Glad you liked it and that you noticed the line about beer. 😂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Robbie, I’m just thankful that I still have my ‘marbles’ and can easily adapt to change instead of like other Seniors who walk around with mouth agape and eyes squinting with that ‘what the hell happened’ look!!!😂😜😳

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Been in marketing most of my professional life. Some distributors were clients. It is indeed done on purpose (by computer algorithms) to force the consumer to change circulating patterns in the store and notice neglected product categories. To be honest, I’m not even sure it has any effect on purchasing behaviour. Just a habit.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It sure doesn’t impact our buying decisions. Of course, we have lists (my wife divides the store, she gets some items and I get some items ) and we do not vary. Well, occasionally I’ll get a couple of Maria’s rum balls (dark chocolate/Jamaican rum) for a treat on the drive home.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. What? Surely, you must have it. It’s the healthiest of the chocolates. You would love the rum balls. And ‘here’ is Mexico? You must find dark chocolate. It’s higher in cocoa.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh, my goodness. I had dark chocolate covered pretzels for a snack after dinner. Dark chocolate is a very common commodity here. Why do you think it is so rare in Mexico? Am I being naive in asking that?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. It is a paradox, as chocolate was “invented” here. Name comes from Nauhatl: xocolatl or something like that. I’ve often wondered why, and asked, there just doesn’t seem to be much “acquired” taste. Preferred sweets are “spicy”. The most common chocolate consumed here tends to be milk chocolate. And the facing in supermarket shelves is very reduced. In Paris in some supermarkets you can find an entire aisle devoted to umpteen varieties of chocolate. Why? Don’t know. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Frog is what Brits call the French. We call them “rosbifs”. We’re even. So once one gets beyond names, I find the term “frog” funny. Also since I speak a somewhat posh English, I can outdo the Brits… 😉 People nowadays get too easily offended. Example: In Swahili, I am a Mzungu, a white man. Sometimes derogatory. But it’s a fact, I am. So when I “speak” Swahili, I am a mzungu. 🙂 A long story short: to turn names around defuses a lot of things. Be good.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Buffalo? Rochester? Or somewhere like that? 🙂
        I did spend some time in New York, looking for a job, even lived in upstate NY, as my money was running out, but didn’t go that far, and I confess I don’t know NY state’s geography in detail.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Oui c’est le Word est OK comme pour toi et sois allé hier tu es en âge plus belle (i dictated my comment and didn’t realize it was on the French setting. I know you can read it but in case anyone else is reading this, I’ll dictate it in English, too. “Once in a while would be OK, but twice within a year is a bit challenging’ 😂😉😜

      Liked by 1 person

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