Archive for Shopping

Inconvenience Stores, EFTPOS & The Death Of Community

Posted in Random Shit That Gives Me The Cunt with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 20, 2008 by Buck Frain

I’ve told you about my morning ritual before. All I want in the morning is my coffee. This morning I had no milk. Fuck. I know it’s never gonna be a good day when I have to put pants on before I’ve had coffee but I know they won’t serve me at the shop if I’m not wearing pants. 

So pants, shoes, shirt, just like a normal person, eyes still crusted over with sleep I head off to the corner shop. 

My corner store is not a franchise, it’s a traditional mum & dad business run by an ancient Indian couple. They barely speak and they move with a Thorazine slowness that is infuriating when all you want is a metcard before you miss your train. Luckily, I have time this morning. I place the milk on the counter. The wizened old crone shuffles to the counter, looks the milk over, looks at me, peruses the chart next to the cash register. Four dollars. she mumbles through her three remaining teeth. You think I’m being unkind but it’s the truth. I realise that I only have 95 cents and a sweaty piece of chewing gum in my pocket. I shove it back in and pull out my wallet. Empty. I hand her my card. Minimum $10 EFTPOS she recites blankly. 

I know I have less than $10 in my account. I drank tequila last night with mates and I know there is no $10. I don’t have $10 in the account. I’ve got about 8 bucks ’til Wednesday. She is unmoved. $10 minimum purchase. I’m not impressed. I just need some milk so I can have coffee. Why? I ask. She doesn’t understand. Why $10? She looks at me like I’m a trouble maker, someone definitely not to be trusted. It’s the rule. $10. Like that explains anything. FUCK! I fuckin’ hate this shit. 

I’ve heard the various justifications and they all sound like complete bullshit. The banks charge us money on small purchases. I’d believe it, the banks are all cunts – that doesn’t justify it, though. Do you know how much these machines cost per month? Obviously not too much or you wouldn’t have one, you fuckin’ tight-arse! Blah blah blah. It’s fucked. I have money. I want to hand it over in exchange for goods. This is the way it works, isn’t it? The cunting banks just fuck everything, how many times can they charge fees for the same transaction? Aren’t they supposed to provide a service or put something back into the community? CUNTS!!! IOf course, it could just be a cheap upsell technique used by drowning businesses to coerce a few extra dollars from a desperate consumer, and I confess in the past I have bought shit I didn’t even want just to get the shit I needed. I’d probably do it today if only I ACTUALLY HAD TEN DOLLARS WHICH I FUCKING WELL DON’T!!!

So I stare at the old woman across the counter. I change tack. Could you just put it through? How about you charge me $8 for the milk. You double your money, I get milk, that has to cover your costs, yeah? She shakes her head and waves an index finger at me like a naughty child. No no no. $10 minimum. OK. That failed. In a last ditch effort: OK, can I just take the milk? I’ll pay you on Wednesday, I promise. Her eyes widen like she’s never heard anything so preposterous in her life – which is a long fucking time to not hear anything like this. No! She’s shouting at me Put it back if you don’t have money. You come back on Wednesday with money I sell you whatever you like. Go on! Get out! Get out of here!

She reached for a broom and was going to sweep me out of the fucking shop, for real. She grabbed it, raised the bristles at me and began to walk around the counter – I just left. You win, lady. FUCK!!! I’ve been going to her fucking dank, cockroach-infested shithole every couple of days for two years. Two fucking years and this is what I get for customer loyalty. I get swept away like garbage because I wasn’t spending ten lousy bucks. I can’t seriously go back there now. Not ever. I’m a fuckin’ person. I bought their overpriced shit because of convenience. FUCK YOU, YOU FUCKING OLD BITCH!!! Where is compassion? Where is community? Where is the next nearest fucking shop to my house? FUCK! How fucking depressing. Black coffee, a big dose of humiliation and the loss of my corner store forever.

Pedestrian Catatonia – A Social Disease & Its Possible Cure Through Mindless Violence.

Posted in Human Stupidity with tags , , , , on April 2, 2008 by Buck Frain

One my least favourite things is mass stupidity. I can sometimes forgive individual stupidity but mass stupidity makes me want to buy automatic weapons. There are many manifestations of this phenomenon but the easiest place to find it is in any urban area in any developed western country.

Just go to the shops or into the city with a purpose. It doesn’t matter what purpose, it can be as simple as going to the bank or buying lunch. As long as you’re in a reasonably urban environment during a time when shops are open you will be hindered by them.

I’m sure they were the inspiration for Romero’s Dawn Of The Dead. They are the zombie-like shoppers who wander aimlessly, usually with eyes facing a direction other than the one they’re walking in. They lumber along in meandering patterns at a Thorazine pace blocking footpaths, walkways, escalators, doorways and stairwells EVERYWHERE! They move like swarm of locusts-with-most-of-the-limbs-pulled-off, completely without purpose, dazzled by bright sparkly signs and shiny things in shop windows, and with an unconscious malice that subverts and destroys purpose in others wherever it can. But worst of all, unlike real zombies, it’s completely illegal to blast the fuck out of them with shotguns or stove their heads in with any kind of bat. Big fucking pity that. I fucking hate them!

If you are reading this and realize that you go to the shops and vague out, if you find yourself at the bottom of an escalator (after blocking both sides of it with your fucktard friend, standing there like wankers because you’re either lazy cunts or you just think it’s a fucking fair-ground ride and so no-one behind can walk down past you) staring into space so the people getting off behind you have to squeeze past your immobilised arse, if you are deaf to the words excuse me then you could be one of them. If you are then I fucking hate you too, and I’ll tell ya now: Watch the fuck out! One day, and it may be soon, I might just punch you in the back of your fucking head!

Just the idea of it fills me with a feeling of euphoria. I would love nothing more than to really punch one of them in the back of their head, like really fucking hard and then when the glazed eyes turned slowly toward me to scream into the soulless void of a face: WAKE UP, YOU FUCK! Or better still, to dress up like James Caan out of Rollerball and just belt through their numbers pushing them out of my way, elbowing them in the backs of their stupid slow heads, kicking their legs out from under them and stomping the fuck out of their prostrate cadavers without breaking stride. Passers-by would turn to just see me disappearing through the crowd at a cracking pace, leaving a path of moaning, hobbled bodies in my wake.

Yeah, yeah, sociopath…anger management…tolerance, blah blah blah – it’s just a fantasy you fucking hippy, so shut your self-righteous yap and go buy a sense of humour and some soap. Cunt.

Pedestrian Catatonia might be a more PC term for this condition but whatever you call it, it’s a fucking menace. I’m not talking about just different people walking at different speeds, that’s just society, living with others and all that. I’m talking about the extreme-asleep-standing-up-no-fucking-spatial-awareness urban zombies. This is a real disease, and it’s a western disease. This level of collective vagueness doesn’t exist in less-developed nations, and I’m pretty sure there is one simple reason for it. In other countries people have things to do, they have purpose and they’re not over-burdened with wealth They don’t have any need of wandering around like lost children just waiting for some kind retailer to relieve them of their disposable income for something they don’t need so the sweet, honest high of retail therapy can block out the desperate meaninglessness of their existence for a time. I suppose I should feel pity for them. I should recognize that they’re just victims of globalization and capitalism-gone-mad just the same as the children who stitch the NIKE caps they wear.

NO! NO! FUCK NO! It’s no fucking use. They are a blight on humanity – they should all be euthanased and turned into fertilizer. 6 billion people on a planet ready to shit itself and some bleeding arsehole wants me to be nice to people who are so over-indulged and privileged that they forget how to be human and turn into…well, what? What would you call them?