My Love/Hate Relationship With Kroger

I have written before about the incompetent bagging abilities of the Kroger baggers. I still battle weekly with multiple gallons of milk in one bag, while chips and salad land in another. I’ve tried talking to the baggers. That usually results in two cans and a bag of chips in one bag. I give up.

My Kroger experience last week, however, was rather unbelievable.

I stopped at the other Kroger a few miles from the one where I regularly shop. I wanted to grab a salad from their salad bar. I made my salad and packaged the dressing in a separate container (small Styrofoam cup with a plastic lid). I grabbed a handful of napkins, plastic fork, plastic knife, and two small packages of crackers.

I had to grab a couple of other items from the store. I then proceeded to the U-scan checkout lane.

I noticed the Dwight Shrute of Kroger watching the U-Scan aisles like a hawk. I zapped all my items except for the small tub of salad dressing, cutlery, napkins, and crackers. For a moment, I thought, Am I supposed to ring up the dressing? Nah, I decided.

My order came to around $10. I paid and picked up all my bags. I looped them on my arm and stuck my check card back in my purse. I turned to pick all the “extras” out of the arm basket sitting beside the scanner, when Dwight walked over.

Before I could pick up my items and stick them in the bag, he began to interrogate me about my attempt at theft.

“Ma’am? What’s this?” He picks up the small container of salad dressing.

“Salad dressing.”

“Well, you need to pay for that. That is considered a salad bar item.”

“Oh, really?! I had no idea.” I answered, kind of incredulously. “What about the crackers?”

And then, as if to throw me a bone, “No. The crackers and forks and napkins come with it.” (Oh, gee, glad you can part with the napkins, there, Kroger.)


I then re-shuffled heavy bags and my purse and dug back out my Kroger card.

Remember. I’ve already spent $10.00.

(Salad bar items are priced per pound. So the scanner weighs your item and charges accordingly.)

I picked up the container (so very light that it was), and Dwight said, “I don’t know. It may not even register.”

Well, genius, if it won’t register, then why even bother, I said thought.

I plopped it up there and punched in the buttons.

Thirty-two cents.

I was about to rob Kroger of thirty-two freaking cents.

And he stood there while I dug out a quarter, nickel, and two pennies from the annals of the abyss that is my purse. And I enjoyed every minute of my digging and searching and sighing as I scavenged for each coin while hanging onto three bags of groceries and a 12-pack of Diet Mountain Dew.

Because—God forbid—I get away with $.32 salad dressing.

Kroger: In my lifetime, I’m sure I have spent more in your store than I will ever see in my savings account. Could you not just let thirty-two cents go?

Image: morguefile