[As I may have mentioned once or maybe a thousand times, I live in Buttcrack, MS, deep in the heart of Dumbfuckistan.]
Dear Grocery Store Cashier:
I belong to a sub-culture known in these parts as "Treehuggers". One of the quaint customs of my people is the use of re-usable tote bags at the grocery store. You may have heard of it before. I hear it's very big in Japan, this custom. Also in most places where people don't want to use a plastic bag for ten minutes that will then go into a landfill for decades. I know, it's a crazy idea. Humor me, though, okay? Approximately 9 out of the 10 times I get into line with my tote bag, you are dumbfounded. Even at the grocery store where I shop like three times a week. Seriously, whatever you are doing that wrecks your memory, cut it out, okay?
Let me help you out here with some advice.
1. Do not try to charge me for my own bag and be mystified that it lacks a tag. It's RE-USABLE, see? So I bring in my own.
2. This happens probably 5 out of 10 times: you ask, "Do you want me to put EVERYTHING in this bag??" Hm, I don't know. Depends on how much stuff I have. It's not a TARDIS, see, so if I happen to have picked out more stuff than will fit in the bag, then, you know, put the rest in disposable plastic. I will re-use it for cat litter. Easy peasy, see?
3. I realize that the custom in most stores is to put one item, maybe two in each bag. But I'm guessing that somewhere along the line, you learned NOT to put squashable things in the bottom of a bag. For example: eggs, bread, chips, $5 bags of organic baby spring greens, bananas; these do not go in the bottom. Do not give me the stinkeye when I stop you from dropping canned goods and orange juice on top of squashable things.
4. If I have, say, a box of cat litter and two smaller items, do not put the 15-pound box of cat litter in the tote bag. This is just fucking stupid. Would you put it in a plastic bag? No. Do you think the bag is made of woven titanium and not some kind of flimsy fiber? God, I hope not. Seriously, put the small shit in the bag, and I will carry the cat litter with the HANDLE ON TOP OF IT.
5. Do not bag my items in plastic before putting them into the tote bag. This just defeats the purpose. You DO understand the purpose, right? To not waste plastic bags??
6. When I tell you not to pre-bag my items in plastic, don't roll your eyes, take the item you already bagged out of the plastic bag, wad it up, and throw it away. I can't tell you how depressing it is when you do that.