Monday, 5 October 2009

Sainsburys, and why I hate it.


For those of you who are unaware of Sainsburys, it's a large grocery chain in the UK, a bit like Tesco or Walmart.

I wrote this from bitter experience of the one near me for part of the novel I'm still writing. The central character is a bit more bitter and twisted than me, so it's a bit more scathing. It's also just a first draft, so still a bit rough...


I hate this place. It's an asylum, a place where the lost and confused get dumped by uncaring relatives so that they can forget them. Pensioners wonder aimlessly through the aisles, attached to their trolleys like a life support. Single men squeezing melons to find a ripe one, confused looks on their faces. A woman holds a coconut next to her ear and shakes it, God knows why.

The refrigerated aisle is littered with half empty cages of steel wire whilst a man in an orange fleece slowly puts chicken madras for one on an empty shelf, one by one, occasionally checking use by dates and shuffling them around.

That's the worst thing about this place. Worse than the lost pensioners who've been trapped in here for days - zig zagging at a glacial pace in search of an exit, worse than the mothers with their screaming children parking their trolleys sideways across the aisles by the cheese; worse than all of these is the atrocious stock management. Around every corner and down every aisle it's littered with steel cages half full of whatever. People in orange fleeces taking things out one by one, blocking the aisle so only one trolley pushed by a moron with no sense of urgency or the passage of time can meander at their own pace past them. And despite this, the place has the feel of communist Russia; half empty spaces where the bread should be, a drastic shortage of semi-skimmed milk but an abundance of sterilised. I don't know how they manage it, people stocking shelves all day but there's never any food. It's like an episode of the twilight zone, some shelve stacker's own personal nightmare I've somehow been trapped in.

A sign where the eggs should be lies to me. If there's a country-wide shortage of free range, then where are Asda getting there's from? Well?



And we'll end with a funky choon. This just makes me want to jump around the living room:

5 comments:

Lou said...

Haha...this is so funny and so very true! Though I find all British supermarkets unbearable. The only thing that differs between them is the colour of the uniform.

BTW, where did you find that genius picture?! Love it :)

plentymorefishoutofwater said...

Very good description. It's like an asylum. Consider yourself followed.
plentymorefishoutofwater.blogspot.com/

Hillbilly Duhn said...

I was just at the my Walmart asylum today. And after reading what you wrote, or during rather, I had clear mental pics of people I passed today. Very well done!

Michael said...

Hello, hello,

Well, it's nice to have you still familiarly suffering from writer's block - that is the name of your blog. I haven't been to a Sainsbury's yet, but it shouldn't be that bad, right?

By the way, I did not make it into UCL. Instead, I have been at the University of Kent, for two weeks now. It's not bad at all, and I think it's a lot better 'cause God knows I wouldn't be able to discipline myself into a self-sufficient lifestyle in London town. I rode the Tube once, though - I didn't know what you were talking about, wasn't that bad. Maybe I was just seated in a lucky carriage.

Anyway, there's Sainsburys, Tesco's and Asda's near the university, but I've only been to Tesco's. I think you've put me off Sainsburys. :)

Glad to read your stuff again,

Michael.

C. E. Bailey said...

I'm from the states, but if you apply what was said to Walmart. . . ha! I love it.