The Foodie Report
Ruminations on food, cooking in and eating out in our area.

It's entirely possible to be a vegetarian in Porkopolis. Pop culture reporter Lauren Bishop blogs about products, recipes and restaurants she's tried for others who eat meat-free. E-mail her at lbishop@enquirer.com.

Nicci King is an unabashed foodie and the Lifestyle/Food editor in The Enquirer's features department. She loves to discover new food faves, and she's on a daily quest to answer one burning question: What's for dinner? E-mail her at nking@enquirer.com.

Enquirer Weekend editor Julie Gaw tends to order the same dish every time she eats at a restaurant, but periodically ventures out to discover something new and fabulous. After living in China, Hong Kong, the Philippines and Thailand for more than 8 years, she craves tasty Asian food. E-mail her at jgaw@enquirer.com.

Food/dining writer Polly Campbell loves every quirk and secret of Cincinnati's food personality, and is on a constant lookout for something good to eat. Keep an eye out for her restaurant picks, or see how she's progressing toward becoming famous for her apple pie. E-mail her at pcampbell@enquirer.com.

Communities reporter Rachel Richardson is on a mission to prove vegetarians eat more than lettuce. She shares both her graduate work on American food culture and food-related news.. E-mail her at rrichardson@enquirer.com.

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Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Grocery store etiquette

How many items over the express limit can you go before you become a rude shopper? If I buy eight oranges, but they are all in one bag, is that one item? Eight? What if they are not in a bag? Would you say anything if you were in the 12 items or less line and the person ahead of you clearly had 20 items? Do you talk on your cell phone while you shop, or glare at the people who do? Do you "test" the cherries and the grapes?

What, in your opinion, are the dos and don'ts of grocery shopping etiquette?

Sidebar: I could be really late on this, but does anyone know what's up with the mirrors on the base of the conveyor belt thingamajig? I've seen them at Kroger and biggs, I think, during checkout. The mirrors are basically on the floor and tilted a bit, right under where the debit/credit card swipers are. I've asked the workers what they are and no one seems to know. I assume it's for security, but it's a little unnerving when you're wearing a skirt...


at 11:45 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder if it's so they can see stuff on the bottom of the cart?

at 11:47 AM Blogger Nicci King said...

Hey, Anon,

I'm sure that's the reason, but it's weird that 1. They still ask, "Do you have anything on the bottom of your cart?" and 2. the people working there don't seem to know. Oh well...

at 11:57 AM Anonymous Casey said...

How about not parking your cart diagonally in an aisle so nobody can pass while you evaluate the labels of everything you see. It also doesn't help when they pretend they don't see you trying to get by.

at 12:26 PM Blogger ShannanB said...

I love (insert sarcasm here) the people who pull into the self check out lanes with a cart load of items. Those lanes should be regulated to a certain number of items as well (some places do this but not all).

at 12:32 PM Blogger Nicci King said...

LOL! Oh, Shannan, but we all know the only thing better is when the person in the self-checkout lane has a cart full of PRODUCE!!!! No bar codes!

"Let's see... where are the product codes? Is tomato under fruit or vegetable... Hmm... Now is this a roma? And this broccoli doesn't have a code on it..."

Er, check the rubber band holding it together!

Makes me want to run out of the grocery store, screaming at the top of my lungs...

at 12:42 PM Anonymous nicejewishgirl said...

O.K. before I write this let me preface this by saying that I love children. I was a professional nanny for years as well as a former preschool teacher. However, I've had enough of the little kiddie carts that bump into me by little people who don't posess the gross motor skills necessary to steer the darn things. This is fine on a not-so-busy weekday, but on a busy Saturday those things just add to the congestion. Must every thing be child friendly?

at 12:46 PM Anonymous soozycue said...

There have been a couple of times recently when I have been to Kroger in Corryville and Mitchell Ave. when the only lanes they have open are express and U-scan lanes.

When you have more than 12 {15?} items, there isn't much else to do.

As for the U-scan (self checkout), even with a number of items, I can usually check myself out, and bag, quicker than the other lanes, where the cashier is talking or just moving at a slow pace {without a bagger}.

I don't think it should matter how many items you have in the U-scan, but are you smart enough to use it in a timely fashion.

at 1:12 PM Blogger Cin Twin1 said...

I am going to preface my comment with I like kids too BUT my pet peeve is when the kids are at the salad bar "picking" items off and eating them. I want to scream "where is your mother? Go find your mommy!"

I swear I would have gotten a spanking so fast if I did something like that!

at 3:27 PM Blogger Stepf said...

I hate when people leave their carts in the parking lot. It's so rude!!!
I also hate when clueless clerks give me strange looks for bringing my own bags. (Though this doesn't happen very often nowadays.)
But what irks me most is how grocery stores double bag and put two items per plastic bag. If I forget my reusable bags, I always ask for paper and tell them to fill it up!

at 3:27 PM Blogger Nicci King said...

Hey, Soozycue, I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that the times when you've seen just the express and self-checkout lanes open was off-peak. I don't think anyone really cares when it's 10:30 p.m. and you're out for a snack run in your sleep shirt, plaid jogging pants, glasses and flip flops. (Don't act like I'm the only one who's gone out in public like that!) I was talking about the prime shopping hours. If your store only has those lanes open during busy hours, I feel for ya'...

at 3:49 PM Blogger ShannanB said...

Two more items...
I am always behind the person who has found the one item in the entire store that has no bar code causing the cashier to put on the dreaded "flashing light" to call for someone to run through the store trying to find out how much it actually cost.

I have yet to go through the check out at a certain grocery chain (starts with M) where my items have all rung up correctly. I actually quit going there because of all the time I was spending at their customer service desk.

Great topic!!

at 8:51 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Cornshuckers: the ladies who stand and shuck all of the ears of corn back so they can "see" if it's OK. Then bitch because all of the corn is shucked, dried out, and ugly. Sorry, I've never seen a man do this.

The perpendicular clueless cart parkers who block aisles and pretend they don't see you trying to get past. This one drives me nuts. I now personally move their carts. It's amzaging how quickly they recover their senses and move their cart to the side when I do this.

The clueless people who decide they are intelligent enough to use self checkout.

People pawing and grabbing the free samples and the salad bars. ICK!!!!!

Store workers standing around in the deli doing busy work when the lines are 10 deep. Hello? Store management? Do you need some quarters for the clue bus?

And finally, the stupid Ohio laws about no wine sales before 1 (I guess so that the people in church can rest easy that no wine will be sold while they're at church--makes about as much sense as the law). I shop on Sunday morning to avoid the morons and the crowds, but, tsk tsk, I cannot be trusted to buy a bottle of wine for dinner that night.

at 8:59 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I actually watched three store managers stand outside the deli and talk while the lines were getting totally out of control. Several workers in the deli were wandering around doing odd jobs.

Can't the "odd jobs" wait until the rush is over? Shouldn't the customer be waited on first?

And why would three supposed "managers" stand and talk while (obviously not) seeing a huge gang of customers queuing up. One would think they would go wash their hands and pitch in to help. But no.

I've stopped shopping at the deli when it's like this. Instead, I go over to the freezer case, grab a turkey breast or a small ham and save myself some money in the process.

at 11:04 AM Anonymous nicejewishgirl said...

I shop at Biggs and I use their automated deli order system. It's a small computer stand located near the produce section. If you plan on shopping for at least 20 minutes then this is a real time saver. When I'm ready to check out I just swing by the deli and pick up my order from the basket. (And no I don't work for Biggs, I just think they run a much better grocery store than the one that starts with a K.)

at 12:40 PM Blogger Nicci King said...

Yeah, I will never understand the law on Sunday wine sales. What makes it even more ridiculous is that you can buy beer all day! What the...? So I guess you could just get started on the beer Sunday morning and, if you're still awake, follow with a wine chaser later that afternoon. Just be sure to have a designated driver take you to the store...


In fact, I think that should be a blog entry of it's very own...

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