Had a bizarre day. I went looking for veggie burgers at the grocery store and couldn’t find them after having searched the burger sales display and the meat section and the frozen food section. So I asked an employee. That went like this:
Me: I’m looking for veggie burgers. Could you help me find them?
Her: *gestures vaguely toward the burger sales display*
Me: Oh, I’ve already looked there and there aren’t any veggie burgers.
Her: Is veggie a brand?
At this point, I’m starting to think maybe she doesn’t know what veggie burgers are. She thinks they’re just regular, beef burgers or something?
Me: No, they’re just burgers made without meat
Her: Without meat? Oh, you won’t find those in the meat section
She turns to leave after saying this, as if the initial query has been addressed in a satisfactory way. Yet I remain veggie burger-less.
Me: That’s right; I’m just wondering if you know where they might be?
Her: Okay, let’s ask the butcher
She walks me over to the butcher and asks him where the veggie burgers are. I could have done this myself. The butcher assures me that they’re in aisle 7, and she leaves. I check aisle 7. It is full of meat burgers. There are many, many options – four different kinds with cheese in them, beef-pork mix, chicken and turkey. You name it, they have it. But none without meat.
I give in to my exasperation and break for lunch. The store has a wide selection of bento boxes, one of which fills me up so I can go back to my quest of finding meatless patties for grilling. This time, I decide to ask someone at the cash:
Me: Excuse me, do you know where I’ll find veggie burgers?
Her: You know, I don’t. Let me ask the service desk.
Again, something I could have done myself. However, I appreciate this new employee’s conciseness relative to the last one who attempted to help me. We approach the service desk and the cashier relays the query to the woman working there. Without missing a beat, she picks up her intercom phone and says for all to hear “MEAT DEPARTMENT TO SERVICE. MEAT DEPARTMENT TO SERVICE FOR ASSISTANCE”. I can’t keep it in now
Me: NO! No, not the meat department. I’ve been there already. I’ve spoken to three people now, how do none of you not know where or what the veggie burgers are? Is this bizarro world!?
The service lady looks at me, then her cashier counterpart, then back to me. It certainly feels like an episode of the Twilight Zone.
Service lady: Okay, sir, let’s go find the veggie burgers
She leads me straight to aisle 7.
Me: The veggie burgers are not here.
Her: They’re usually here
Me: I believe that, but there are none here. I’ve checked.
Her: Let me just double check.
Sure enough, my eyesight has not betrayed me and there are no veggie burgers among the plethora of burgers in aisle 7. We go back to the service desk and she pulls something up on her computer.
Her: Oh, we don’t have veggie burgers right now. The next shipment is tomorrow.
Me, outwardly: Thank you so much for checking that for me. Have a great day.
The store down the street had veggie burgers.