Friendly grocery store clerks can make your whole day

It’s funny the impact that someone can make on your life, often without even knowing it.

The grocery store is a great example of this because it’s a place where you are constantly interacting with people you don’t know while you are simultaneously avoiding people you do know because you look terrible (at least that seems to happen to me a lot).

Little moments and brief conversations can make a big difference, and can even cheer you up when you are concerned about how much you are paying for paper towels.

Last night, for example, I was in a grocery store at the checkout line waiting for my debit card to get approved and thinking about how much money I had spent, when the cashier completely changed my mood.

While I was busy staring at the card machine because I never know if I have to put in the numbers, use the stupid chip thing, sign my name or do nothing, the cashier bagged up all of my groceries. Then, while I was waiting for the card machine to grant me approval (always a tense moment) the cashier picked up my bag of miniature bags of chips and casually tossed it into my cart for me. The bag flew over the checklane and landed neatly in the cart. I was quite surprised and it was quite awesome.

I smiled, she smiled, the machine finally granted me approval (whew!) and I grabbed the rest of my groceries, said thanks and left. It was a light and funny way to end my time at the store.

I loved the surprise and I always enjoy the thought of throwing groceries, as I often do this while shopping with my stepdaughter. My son and I used to this, and now my stepdaughter and I carry on the tradition of the over-the-head tosses of paper towels down the aisle to whomever is driving the cart.

The cashier put me in a very good mood and I went home while she kept on working and probably didn’t think anything else about it.

Every store has friendly cashiers, clerks and other employees, and many of us have favorite cashiers and clerks we like to talk to while shopping. They make a huge difference whether they know it or not, and I am grateful and impressed.

I worked in grocery stores for many years when I was younger, and I recall several times when I really didn’t feel much like being friendly to the customers who were constantly bothering me while I was trying to do my work or eat the store produce.

Anyway, I am not sure how so many clerks and cashiers can be so friendly all of the time, and I hope they know that we appreciate their positive moods while they are working at some tough jobs.

Where I live in Athens we have friendly cashiers and clerks in every store I go to, but one store employee in particular just amazes me every time I stop in to spend too much money on paper towels.

Seaman’s is a small, locally owned store in town and it is one of many excellent grocery stores. The employees there have always been friendly, but they have one employee now who may be the nicest person I have ever met. I won’t name the person because I don’t want to embarrass the employee, but this person just makes my day every time I am there.

The first time I noticed this, I bought something like peanut lovers Chex Mix (Seaman’s is one of the few stores around that carries the peanut lovers style, which is my favorite), pop, paper towels and dog food.

“Great choices, great choices,” the employee said to me.

“Really?” I thought. I wondered for a moment if the employee was making a joke but the cashier/clerk was sincere and we talked a little more about my smart shopping. I guess those really were some brilliant choices I made!

The employee also made small talk about the card reader machine, bagged my groceries, asked me about my day and smiled the whole time. I cannot describe how happy this person seemed, or how happy it made me. When I finally paid, I was not sure if I should just leave or if I should hug the person. I am not a hugger, so I just left.

That was a few months ago, and I stopped into Seaman’s again last week and the same thing happened. I had forgotten all about the friendly cashier/clerk, but the same person was patient with me while I took way too long deciding on a pop to buy and then talked with me again about the card reading machine and groceries. I am always up for talking about the card reader machine! The employee asked about what type of bills I wanted with my cash back and wished me a good day, and I soon left with my bag of pop and Chex Mix in my hand and a great mood in my head.

I have talked with people my office who also greatly appreciate this employee, and I know other people also enjoy the super vibe this person gives off. If you have not been to Seaman’s recently, or if you are just in a bad mood, I’d suggest you shop at the small store and hope you get this employee at the register or you get the employee to help you somewhere else in the store. They also have a lot of other great employees.

Or, if you are in a bad mood, I’d suggest going to your favorite local store and waiting in line just to see your favorite cashier/clerk, it will likely make your day. A lot of these employees work thankless jobs, but they make a big difference and can put us in great moods.

Just don’t buy too many paper towels while you are shopping! Why are they so expensive!?


Do you have any thoughts on favorite clerks/cashiers or paper towel prices? Feel free to comment below. Thanks.


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