Crown is Moving

By Mike Johnson

I love mom & pop grocery stores.

Yesterday I drove 75 miles just to walk fresh aisles. I'm on a perpetual search for Alpha-Bits cereal, Plochman mustard in the little squeeze barrels, and french burnt peanut candy.

Oh-for-three this visit. But I did find an odd brand of cocktail sauce. "Crown." So I picked up two and walked to the checkout gal.

Ashley was chewing. She'd snuck in a bite after the last customer and darn if I didn't walk up at the worst possible time.

I have this annoying habit of trying to make cashiers laugh. So of course I said something that required a response, which she couldn't do.

"Hello! How are you doing today?" (Hurried chew, look of embarrassment, smile)

"Take your time. That's the way it always works, right?" (More chewing, another sheepish grin, tries to scan items)

(Finally swallows and speaks quietly into her lapel microphone) "I need a price check on Crown cocktail sauce. The customer says it's a dollar but it won't scan."

"Do you protect Presidents in your spare time?" I ask. (She smiles)

"$2.00 please." (I love no sales tax when I visit Montana)

I pay, grab the bag and then pretend to speak into a wrist microphone.

"Crown is moving."

She laughs.

Mission accomplished.


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