Target at Night

by mathhbratt

I am visiting my daughter and gson for a few weeks, and they live half an hour from anything. I was craving Quinn popcorn and headed in to Target to get some. (I never go to the Target where I live, because it is crazy, but I go to my daughter’s Target often while visiting her.) I arrived to Target 45 minutes before closing time, and there were just four items on my list: popcorn, vapor rub, nail file, hot wheel cars. I found the first few items within three or four minutes of being in the store, but the hot wheel cars were not as easy to find.

Near the toy area was the electronics area. There I found three employees standing around doing nothing. (This was after I passed two employees in the health and beauty section complaining that they should give customers a half-hour warning for closing tonight, because they were ready to go home.) I asked the trio where I might find Hot Wheels and also some blind bags (an idea that came to me while experiencing anxiety that I might show up at my daughter’s house with a disappointing choice of car, and the blind bags would offer my gson more excitement). One of the three employees was incredibly helpful and guided me directly to the items I sought. I spent maybe all of two minutes selecting my items and then thought I could save a lot of time and stress by checking out with the electronics trio, giving them something more to do than stand around.

When I got back to the electronics stand, it was vacant. Darn. This meant I would have to go to the front checkouts. Oh well. How bad could that be?

OMG. It was so bad! Only two lanes were open, and each line was around six people deep. Sigh. I entertained myself with live texting the experience with my daughter. It seemed almost every person in front of me was purchasing wine. Why? Why on a Sunday evening would so many people be buying wine at Target? Most of them seemed REALLY young. I thought maybe this Target doesn’t card people, but the checker in my line did. I pondered about fake ID’s, and I noticed the checker staring at me. Apparently I was holding my phone in a position that looked like I was recording her. This amused me to a great degree, and I considered how this might affect her as she examined the fake ID’s that took her all of half of a second to inspect. Yep. I am betting this Target sells to underagers. It was the only explanation I had for so many of them buying wine at such an odd time instead of buying it at the gas station or grocery store like a normal person would.

When I finally got to the conveyor belt, the person in front of me could not be bothered with putting a red separator thing to allow me to put my stuff on the belt, so I used my basket as a divider. When I was about half way through unloading my items, a third checker finally showed on the scene and started taking people who hadn’t even begun waiting yet into his lane. Whatever, dude. Whatever.

The person in front of me almost ended up paying for some of my stuff, because the checker didn’t realize my basket was a divider and pushed it aside and started ringing up my blind bag items with the lady’s pack of gum. I was about to speak up, but the lady finally did. I couldn’t decide who was more to blame: the lady for not wanting to put a divider on the belt or the checker for not realizing my basket was clearly dividing that lady’s pack of gum from my items.

Eventually I got to pay for my items and hear the, “Would you like to save 5% today….” spiel trying to get me to open a Target card. Then I drove home to eat my popcorn and celebrate not forgetting any of the items I went shopping for even though I hadn’t written any of them down. (When you get to be my age, remembering four items on a shopping list is a big deal, especially after driving for half an hour while fireworks were blasting in the sky to go get them.)