If you're some kind of jerk and you have nothing better to do than wait in line staring at the National Enquirer photos of today's most popular celebrity with the upper thigh cellulite that's setting the fashion world on fire, just jump in the first line you see.
For those of us with lives and things to do and a lick of sense, we want to spend the least amount of time possible in line and there are a few rules and regulations that will help you do just that.
The only flaw with these rules is that not everyone knows or follows them. That's clear every time the 16th "Storm of the Century" of the year is on its way; any courtesy or manners or simple acceptable human behavior is tossed out the door along with all the good carts apparently because I still haven't found one with four functioning wheels ever since I used to push them around Waldbaum's as fast as I could before jumping on the back of it and cruising into the cereal shelf.
The fact that nobody follows these rules is really more of a flaw in human nature, not a flaw with the rules. The rules are perfect. So as a public service to my friends, family, and the human race at large, I've decided to publish my guide to the quickest, most effective, and least painful grocery store journey possible.
These nine #ThugLifeHackProTips will help you smoothly maneuver your way through the unwashed sweatpants-wearing hordes that litter the aisles of your local chain grocery store.
1. Live a meager lifestyle.
Don't require much. Live off of the basics. Water. Almond milk. Blueberries. Bananas. A mouthful of free olives. When you don't need much, you don't have to wait in line at Stop & Shop for much. Buddha said that.
2. Continuously move.
Don't stop at the olive bar, circle the olive bar. Keep the forward momentum. Now, sometimes the free olives won't cut it. You'll need protein. Don't be afraid of the fish or deli section, but only if there isn't a line. If you're desperate, take a ticket and shop in the area near the section. Keep moving until they call your number. A shopper in motion stays in motion. That's Newton's first law of grocer motion. Grotion.
3. Never get a cart.
Get 3 baskets if you have to. The bulk of the cart, and the aforementioned malfunctioning wheels, impede forward progress. Baskets are preferable because they help limit your purchases to the necessities, and using more than one basket will help you practice for when you get home and take in the groceries. You'll be well prepared to carry the 13 bags in from your car in one trip, because, as you should already know, you NEVER take two trips.
Clearly I have based my research for this guide on some of the greatest thinkers in history:
Buddha, Newton, internet meme makers. Only the best and brightest.
4. Always check the registers.
Some registers might have a sign reading "credit card only" or "closed after this customer" and the last thing you want to do is waste your time in a line that actively hates you.
5. Size up the people in line.
What's that? You don't judge people? Oh really? Too bad. That kumbaya shit ain't helping you here, friend. You need to go full Judge Dredd on those lines. You are the law.
6. The best lines are 12 items or less, but don't assume everyone follows the 12 items or less rule.
Check their basket. Try to count their items. If they have more than the stated number, it may still be worth getting behind them if the other lines have more people. Bring a calculator if you need. The equation for figuring out the speed of a line is x/y * c = b where x is the number of items in the cart, y is the number of people in line, c is the amount of coupons, and b is the wait time. Save yourself some trouble and memorize the formula.
7. There are a few people to never get in line behind.
Never get in line behind people with coupons. Never get behind people with carts, people with kids, people with baggy clothes, people with tight clothes, people wearing pajamas or men in open toed sandals.
7a. Never get behind young men.
This needed its own category. Young men are the worst. They can be seen looking around frantically, unfamiliar with their surroundings. It's probably the first time they are on their own and they don't know what they are doing. They have one coupon; it's expired but they think it should work just fine. They jump into the first line that shows promise, but their eagerness makes them perform poorly. And everyone ends up with a disease.
Wait, is this my guide to shopping or sex? You know what? Either way, this rule still stands.
8. There is one person you should always get behind.
The old lady with a Vespa. Hear me out. This is the white whale (that's not a fat joke I swear). The old lady in the Vespa is the one you've been looking for your whole life. Or at least the whole time you've been checking out the lines. Use her like Dan Dierdorf on the 72 Dolphins. Get behind that ol' girl and let her open up a hole for you.
Ok, I'm pretty sure this is still the shopping guide but it's getting a little murky.
See, Nani on the scooter has been here before. She's got everything memorized and her ass is motorized.
See that might sound like something involving sex but I was just referring to the Vespa, not some crazy anal sex toy. Not that there would be anything wrong with that. In fact, I have a section about motorized ass play in my guide, "79 ThugLifeHackProTips for Your Next Mindblowing, Taint Shivering Orgasm," but that's for another day.
If Granny needs anything, twelve employees are rushing over to help. Someone is bagging all her stuff up. You might think she has coupons, but no. She has the Centrum Silver Special Customer card you don't even know about. Let her take you to the promised land of a speedy check out.
9. Use self check out only when there are 3 or more people in every other line.
The employees are generally quicker than the machines (in your face, T-1000!) and usually they will help you bag your stuff. Plus, the machines usually malfunction (haha, T-1000) so you'll just end up requiring an employee's assistance anyway. Of course, you have to wait until the employee assigned to the self check out line finishes helping the customer in the other self check out line and now you are watching the guy who got in a different line 5 minutes after you bagging up his groceries with the help of a lovely special needs worker who knows to put bread on top and always says, "Have a wonderful day!" when you leave.
That could have been you on the receiving end of that joyful farewell, but you're still waiting for the 20 year old kid who's trying to remember his code to reset the machine.
I Love You All...Class Dismissed.