I think I’m getting over my deli counter intimidation. At least I hope so. There’s just something about clean glass counters covering rows of meat in front of people whose job is to ask “Can I help you?” that bothers me.
Sometimes I feel like, “Sorry to bother you, but would you please get me some ham. Whatever size or poundage is easiest for you is just fine.”
My mom ordered from the deli like a professional. When my dad went he asked me what kind Mom bought. Then I could drive and they sent me with a list. I had to face the deli counter on my own.
Soon I was married and had to grocery shop on my own. Not so fun. Which kind did my man like? How much should I get?
[I’m no good at decisions if you hadn’t already figured that out. The deli counter is decisions galore.]
If the employees called my number I felt like I should be ready and quickly say what I wanted. After all, the other people waiting all knew exactly what they wanted and wanted it quick. So I’d figure out ahead of time and write on my list exactly what I was going to order.
Then my husband pointed out that the one guy always flirted with me. I honestly didn’t pay the least bit attention because I was so worried about which ham I should get. Now I had something else on my plate. [bad pun intended]
After I got more comfortable with what I wanted I started to say how I wanted the slices. This was a big step for me. “Please, if it’s not too much trouble I’d like that chipped.” I didn’t say it that way with words, just with tone.
Once my husband mentioned he remembered that chipping the lunch meat was more of a bother than just slicing it. Oh, great. They’re going to see my coming and think, “Here comes that lady that always asks for the meat to be chipped. Hope I don’t have to wait on her.”
When I order the chipped turkey I bite my tongue so I don’t blurt out, “I’m sorry. It’s for my husband. He prefers it chipped. Otherwise I wouldn’t bother you with the chipping. Honest.”
I’m so over this problem now. Well, mostly. Taking my kids gives me courage; or I’m just more worried about what they’re doing than what the deli people think.
Do any of you have this problem? I’m probably the only one who feels used to feel like this.
Any of you ever work in a deli? Is chipping harder than slicing?
P.S. I’m posting late today because I had to go grocery shopping, and – you guessed it – get some lunch meat.