Growing up in Yorkville and being a member of an Irish family entitled one to an Irish sense of humor. Since you lived in Yorkville with a lot of other Irish families, you had the chance to experience a lot of Irish humor. There was sufficient area for you to practice your Irish sense of humor, and often times, you were the subject of an Irish sense of humor.
A lot of the times that when I was working at Grand Union on 86th Street and on the checkout counter at the register, you literally could play God at times. Most of the items that would come across the checkout line always had a price on the product. WE usually had a shopping cart where this pricing box was kept that held an assortment of pricing sticks (for lack of a better name) that held about 50+ pricing sticks. The most common were 19, 29, 39, 49, 59, etc. for the majority of the items in the grocery aisles.
Well, when the boys were pricing items and placing them on the shelves, one of the items that never got a pricing stamp was usually the sanitary items for women. Now, you would think that this was not a problem except that when you got to the check out line find out what you had to pay. usually, most of the lines had girls and this was no problem. There were days when a young woman, who would not get embarrassed, would go on one of the male’s checkout line and think nothing of it.
As the items were being recorded by the register, it was inevitable that this would eventually surfaced and have to be entered in the register. I remember Jimmy D on the line one day and a package had no price on it and he raised it up and motioned to me if I knew what the price was. I would ask in a loud voice if the package was labeled as to what size and Jimmy would respond as to the size. By this time, the girl, if she was young, was saying to herself that this was going to be her last time going on one of the boy’s checkout lines.
One night, usually on a Thursday night, I was working the express checkout out line at the Grand Union and it was a quite night. Most Thursday nights were slow because Friday was a payday back then. We always had a thing to do on our check out lines and that was to make sure we had enough bags for check out and there was a sufficient pile of cigarettes for our future cancer patients. I got all the bags I needed and was in the process of filling up the loose cigarette packs.
As I was dropping down to get another carton of cigarettes, I noticed a cute young lady doing some late night shopping in the freezer aisle. I thought nothing of it until I came up a second time as I noticed her just finished looking down towards the checkout lines and she started to look to the opposite side, the back of the store. Feeling comfortable that no one was in the store, she boosted herself up on the outside of the freezer display to reach into the deep freezer to get that one package that was left on the bottom of the freezer of the item she wanted.
She felt comfortable because the store was very quiet and empty and no harm done because she did want that one or two packages that were at the bottom of the freezer but too far away for her to reach in and grab. The only thing that was left for her to do was to prop herself up on the edge of the freezer and reach down but it was still too far for her to easily grab the package. Feeling comfortable that no one was in the aisle, the young lady boosted her left leg up on the edge f the freezer to get better leverage to reach the package and she was successful.
It as at this point that she was successful in coming down from the edge of the freezer with the package in the her hands and was getting ready to place the package in the wagon that she spotted me looking down the aisle at her. Her face went immediately red when she saw me as I looked at her and said “Hi”. Needless to say, she did not come to my checkout counter but checked out on one of the girls that working that night.
A little Irish humor for today.
Marty Dougherty #greendougherty