You’re in a tense situation. You have stood in the correct queue at Tesco’s where the sign says “queue from this end” and you are getting a little impatient at the cashier’s incompetence. The customer being served is taking their time to find their wallet even though they knew that ultimately the end result would be payment. “Preparation people!” you shout in your head but your face shows no sign of weakness. Well maybe a small twitch is starting to show itself in your right eye.
Your turn is approaching and so you organise what order to put your items out to get through this mundane process as quickly as possible, when a person stands by the cashier looking to pop a question. They are holding an item, so it could be they are queue jumping, but surely not. This is England, where people drink English tea and wear monocles. The other possibility is they have a quick question. This is okay as long as it’s quick; thirty seconds countdown is about to begin.
The person approaches the cashier and asks a question. They then pause and pull out a Tesco shopping bag with an item they had previously bought inside. This is going to take longer than thirty seconds and the cashier is actually responding and helping! What do you do?
Stand there and look at the person behind you for a mutual understanding of disgust. If you are both in agreement you shake your heads at each other then return to looking forward and do nothing. However, the ‘super you’ in your mind is standing there waving their index finger like a teacher, pointing to the back of the queue and asking the rhetorical question “are you aware that this is a queue and you have rudely pushed in?” Your mind even responds on behalf of the rude customer, with a mutter, a red face and an apology, whilst the remaining people in the queue look on you with admiration for having the courage to speak up on their behalf.
The super you is incredible, and even though the scenario is fake you feel your stress levels dropping. You still stare at the rude customer as the rudeness of staring compliments pushing in front of a queue and will leave an impression in that customers’ mind: it is not acceptable to push in.
These are standard actions of people too polite to moan (at the time anyway) and I am proud to be one of them. Gutsy on the inside, whilst mastering the “I’m appalled at you” stare on the outside.