Just for you Rob...
So our new four course a night dinner regime necessitated my running up to ASDA last night at six for a couple of missing items... At six on a Wednesday evening ASDA seemed to think the optimum till configuration was approximately eight open basket self checkouts each with one customer, four large trolley self checkouts (which were installed less than a month ago) each with one customer, three manned trolley checkouts each with five customers (mostly over sixty) and ten closed man-able checkouts. I happened to be at the self checkout closest to the manned one with five pensioners at it. The wee man in charge of all the self checkouts approached the woman at the end of the long queue and tried to usher her towards my checkout with a smile and a 'this self checkout is moving more quickly and I can help you if you haven't used one before'. He was in his twenties. She was late 70s. She turned out to be none other than (a clone of) Mrs Richards from Fawlty Towers... (Remember the wildebeest sweeping majestically?)
'Excuse me?' she bellowed.
He repeated his suggestion.
She looked around wildly and then shouted as if her hearing aid was turned off 'Am I being paid to work at Asda?' The boy looked sheepish. She shouted louder 'Is Asda paying me?' He dared to ask 'What for?' She then pointed out that if the chap at the checkout she was waiting at was being paid for ringing up her groceries, she would not use a checkout where she did his job without receiving the same renumeration. '...Refuse to use the bloody things!' she muttered. Her whole queue went from staring embarrassedly at their feet to nodding appreciatively. Then she spied a poster hanging above the till with the slogan 'Asda, Happy to Help!' 'Who is it you're happy to help, young man? Because it obviously isn't the customer! Three checkouts on just before dinner time?! Happy to help indeed!!' 'Young man' scuttled off muttering about finding her a manager to speak to. As the waiting continued she whipped all the OAPs up into a frenzy ranting furiously about trying to force people onto self checkouts unwillingly and when the manager finally arrived he was almost knocked over be a herd of pensioners sweeping majestically ranting in unison about ASDA's recent attempts at staff cutting!
I had to leave then so I'm not sure if he got out with his life or if Mrs Richards is still giving him a roasting!