Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Maceys: A Love Story

I was just reading Bek's blog and she mentions how she is overly-friendly -- actually answering the store clerk's questions about how her day is going, etc. I really relate to this, and I'll tell you a story about it. Well, not really about it, but...you'll see.

I do the majority of my grocery shopping at Costco, but for the things I can't get there, or for the things I don't want in industrial sizes, I shop at Maceys. Not Macy's, but Maceys. Before I knew about Maceys I had done my grocery shopping at Food 4 Less, which had good prices, but more often than not smelled like rotten produce. Our neighbor at the time, Erin Strong, told me about the new Maceys that had just opened in Provo, and explained to me that it's Food 4 Less prices without the trashy atmosphere. Plus, she said, the parking lot is well-lit. Since I often do my shopping at night, this is a very important quality to me for any store to have. I remember the first time I went there, and I still go there. Another thing I like about Maceys is that the phrase "grocery stocker" is used over the intercom. When they say this, I hear "grocery stalker". My brother heard the same thing, and when I'd make him come to Maceys with me, and we'd hear mention of a grocery stalker, he'd turn into a grocery stalker, falling a few steps behind me, watching my every move from around the corner of the endcap, quickly looking away and disinterested if I looked his way. We played this every time we went. We're so mature.

But I digress.

My point is that I have favorite cashiers. I'm at the stores that I frequent so often that I look for and go to the cashiers that I've had friendly encounters with. I'll happily wait in a long line to go to Nice Girl rather than go in an empty line if Grumpy Incompetent Lady is working there. Danette was my favorite at Costco, until she switched shifts -- she now stocks (hee-hee). At Maceys, I had a favorite cashier about five years ago. She was very sincere, and here's where she won me: I would always bring my water gallon containers in to refill them, and refills are cheaper than the first time you buy a gallon of water (although I'm now hooked on distilled, thank you, Stephanie), so everytime I'd get to the cashier, I'd have to explain that the gallons are refills so that I wouldn't be charged extra. This nice girl said to me, "Oh, here, I'll put these yellow stickers on your containers, and then the cashiers will always know that yours are refills." I thought this act to be nothing short of pure charity. And from then on, I always went to Curly-haired, Redhead Cashier Girl, also known as Monica.

When I first read Monica's name tag, Ms. Lewinsky was still hanging around, and I realized that I didn't know anyone else named Monica. I remember wondering if she had siblings, and if so, what their names were. (Chad, Lynnette, Jennifer, Carolyn & Nicole)

Like I said, I used to make James come with me to the store. I remember one trip in particular, after he had put away the package of cookies he had been using as a mask as he followed not-too-closely behind me, I got in one of the longer lines and told James that I really liked this cashier. He looked at her and said, "She's got cool hair."

Fast-forward to a few weeks later...James came over to my apartment after one of his UVSC classes of the new winter semester. I asked him to keep an eye on li'l ~j. so that I could take a shower, and also asked him how his day went. He told me that in one of his classes, there was a girl that he simply could not take his eyes off of, and after class, he approached her with: "Excuse me. I don't usually do this, but do I know you from somewhere?" She asked if he knew this person or that, and the answer was no. They couldn't figure it out. I asked him what her name is, and he said, "Monica." "Monica what?" "Monica Curly-red-hair." When I was in the shower, I realized who it was. After my shower I said, "You mean Monica from Maceys?"

Eureka.

He saw her the next day (even though I think he had already dropped that class), and told her how he recognized her. It was established that they lived only a few blocks from each other. They started dating, but only very casually (much to Monica's dismay) because James was preparing for a little two-year vacation in the Houston area amongst the Vietnamese folk. Before he left, Monica told him, "While you're gone, I'll just become best friends with Jenny, and then you'll have to marry me."

Guess what.

That's exactly what happened. I mean, other stuff happened, too, but I'm telling a story here. Six weeks after he returned home, James & Monica became Mister And Mrs. James And Monica, in the St. George Temple. It was on my own six-year wedding anniversary.

Now Brandy needs to pick someone and use the August 15th of her choice. If you want, Beans, I'll be on the lookout next time I go to the market.

14 comments:

Queen Scarlett said...

Because I'm a cheesy romantic... that is so CUTE! What a beautiful story about karma... lovely!

MOM said...

The only problem I see with this is that Brandy and her friends don't quite fint into the TUES-WED-THURS as wedding days- So we are either looking at a 2008 wedding or we have a lot of work to do on Beans. I thought this was cute. I love you all--- MOM

the single one said...

nice... caitlin got married on a friday. why couldn't i? no pressure or nothin'. i like your blog.

not getting any younger said...

matter o' fact, would you put future brother inlaw on your list next time you go to the grocery store? preesh!

Bek said...

That is a great story!!! Love at Macey's. :-) That is a great one to tell the grandkids.

R

AzĂșcar said...

I love Macey's now.

Macey's used to be down from Michael's in Orem and it was perhaps the most bizarre low-ceilinged grocery ever. Exposed wiring and insulation. Everything brown and yellow. Bag it yourself. Macey's was bottom rung. Then they closed that store and opened the new one and it's like shopping at a clean Ma and Pa heaven. I've never gotten that King Kong Kone, but I like the idea of it.

Bek said...

I remember when I was at BYU about ONE MILLION years ago, I would drive all the way to the new Macy's in Orem to shop. I just liked that it was clean and new and big. I am so old, I remember when the BUILT the Food 4 Less on University. Also, I agree w/ Carina....the old Macey's made me feel like I was shopping in a Haunted House.

Here we have Safeway. I LOVE Safeway. I think that one of the main reasons that I don't think I could ever move to Utah is that they don't have Safeway there!! I am only KIND OF kidding.

I still have a few siblings not married...you are on to something. Just think....it all started with distilled water.

noonderbar said...

We'd like to bear our testimonies that we know that Macey's is true. And we love our roommates. And one time I personally stalked a stocker. Then I stalked James. Then Jenny. Then we got married. All three of us. True story.

c jane said...

Monica I love your hair too! And how you used to wear double pants on cold days and still you looked like you were size -4. And your humor and...

noonderbar said...

Oh C Jane, you are too nice. I wish that I still worked with all the smellys at SSV. I was the best (and warmest I might add) recess guard they ever knew. Ah, memories...

Oh, and by smellys I mean the students, not the teachers (most of them anyway. excluding mister Z)

Lorien said...

I love the oldish lady at Macey's who calls me sweetie and honey and REALLY asks me how I'm doing and gives me tips if I'm buying the more expensive thing and I really wanted to buy the one on sale, now didn't I? and so sends the bagger to go get it and then gives me a hug when I leave so then I hug the bagger because how could I not with all that love going around? And all this the day before thanksgiving when it's crazy. I'll remember her name next time...she usually works in the mornings.

monica said...

Her name is Elaine, and if you were somewhere between the ages of zero and twenty she would give you smarties

Lorien said...

That's right! Elaine. I love her. I will go to the longest line if she's the checker.

~j. said...

Elaine once gave me a Nestle Crunch bar because it had been a long wait in line. She said, "Sorry for putting you in a crunch today." I love that lady.