Tuesday, February 17, 2009

On breaking the local supermarket

On breaking the local supermarket

I was in Budgens the other afternoon, fighting off pensioners as I tried to cobble together my evening meal from the 'Reduced to Clear' shelf.

Clutching my two litre bottle of Yop, value potato salad and Linda McCartney 'I can't believe it's not venison', I elbowed by way to the front of the queue at cigarette counter.

The woman behind the counter looked me in the eye, grabbed the microphone for the in-store tannoy and shouted in a voice that could be heard in Ecuador without amplification:

"Code 20 at the kiosk please"

Aaargh! Doom! Code 20!

I had to ask: "What's a code 20, then?"

"I can't tell you. It's a secret."

"Are you sure?"

"Yes. Yes I am. Now, do you want to buy those zero-nutrition calories, or not?"

It was at that point when the school-leaver-with-the-big-teeth strode up to the counter with a hitherto unknown air of urgency.

"Code 20? How much change d'you need then?"

That went down well.

"You DO realise we're going to have to change the secret codes AGAIN."

"What? Even Code 18?"

"Especially Code 18: Leopard loose in the store."

"And Code 19?"

"Leper loose in the store. It's a wonder we're still open with you and your big mouth."

I made my excuses and left. Busting, as I was, for a Code 2.

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