Had to make a trip to the doctor today. My fabulous internist's office is at 24th and M Streets NW, which is also right around the corner from Washington, D.C.'s, newest Trader Joe's at 24th and L. Having completed my business with the medical stuff, I decided to pop into TJ's because I had decent street parking and figured I might as well take advantage of it.
The new TJ's is spacious and well-stocked, in keeping with the company's image. But the thing that stood out in this particular store was how the check out lanes were set up.
Trader Joe's has done everything it can to ensure that Washingtonians are on their best behavior by corralling folks. When you're ready to pay for your treasures of Joe, you queue up in a roped off lane and wait for the next available cashier to call out, "Next customer, please!" Think Borders Books crowd control, but for food instead.
On the one hand, it's a great way to handle the hoary masses of Pirate Booty-crazed downtowners.
On the other hand, it's a sad commentary on the behavior of folks in this town and its surrounding feeder 'burbs. It's testament to the me-first, fuck-you, narcissitic behavior of many of the people who live and work here who think only of themselves and rarely think of others.
In many respects, it's poetic that we end up herded like a bunch of stupid bovine or sheep. We're often no better behaved and yet, we should know better. Making the effort to be courteous and polite takes very little time and goes a long way. So the next time you're heading for a line in a store somewhere, stop a moment, take a deep breath, and repeat the words, "It's okay. I'll get there when I get there."
This town is hard enough without all the bad behavior. Let's make an effort to make it a kinder, gentler place. And thank you Trader Joe's for reining in the hoary hipsters. I think.
Photo copyright: Rick Nolthenius via Google Images.