Monday, 6 August 2012

The Fawlty Towers of UK supermarkets

For those of you who are in the dark about Fawlty Towers, just watch this short YouTube video.
I'll give you a moment.
Watched it yet?
What you are watching others now?
Ok, I'll come back later.

Ah! you're back now.  Good, now you know what I mean by Fawlty Towers. 
Here in the UK we have several supermarket chains, and some are high end, for the people who have more money than sense, some are mainstream, and some are cheaper supermarkets.'s not one of the cheaper supermarkets that I am dubbing the supermarket equivalent of Fawlty Towers, but a mainstream one. Ah, you know the ones I mean?   Good.  I'll narrow it down a bit without naming it.  This one is based in Yorkshire, and does not have a milk distribution subsidiary.  Got it?  OK
You probably want to know why I think this chain is the supermarket equivalent of Fawlty Towers.
  1. You approach a till, and sometimes have unpacked half your shopping onto the conveyor belt when the checkout person tells you, usually quite rudely, that the checkout is closed.  Bear in mind, there is no sign saying that, and today I had two identical items, would it have killed her?
  2. You ask where to find something in the store and unless you are lucky enough to happen upon a supervisor, you tend to get the answer. "That's not my section"  Don't these people shop in their own supermarket.
  3. You can wait at the kiosk to pay for something whilst the staff, fully aware you are there, will carry on their own conversation, then serve you, when they have finished.
  4. When going around the shop you take your life in your hands, as shop assistants filling shelves push unitainers of goods down aisles without looking where they are going, and no apology if the almost run you over.
  5. When outside  the supermarket you are in a similar situation as detailed in 4 above, only this time from the trolley collectors who blithely run their trolleys back to the places where they are kept without taking notice of shoppers, children or cars.
  6. The store shuts at ...let's say 8pm for arguments sake.  You only need one item, you know exactly where it is in the shop.  Yet at 7.45pm you are turned away from the shop. "We close at 8" no argument will get you in to get the one item you want.
  7. When I was in my early 20s, my boyfriend's brother applied for, and got the post of assistant manager.  This boy had left school with no qualifications, hadn't worked since leaving school, and could not spell his own middle name.  It's spelt Graham incidentally, not Greyum.  This must be a standard for their staff as most seem a little slow, and many of them surly as well. 
Like I said, I won't name the supermarket.  Why do I continue you to go there?  I can walk there, and they have a really good range of magazines.  I do only ever go for a few items and have never done an entire "shop" there, nor ever intend to.


Blue said...

I think I know which one you're referring to, as I know you have only two supermarkets that you can walk to, but I will confirm with you or via research.

Blue said...

Okay I was right. LOL