Today, we had a nice family brunch at our favorite diner, and then went over to ShopRite for some weekend grocery shopping.  Geez, the place was wall-to-wall people.  I guess Sunday is a popular time for folks to go grocery shopping.  I was at the deli, holding my ticket number 63 in the queue, and I watched everyone talking to the deli clerks, ordering their meats and cheeses.

[Before I describe further, I should explain what I’m doing on the deli line, as there is a backstory to this.  I have an agreement with my wife that if I bring lunches from home, I take the theoretical money I would have spent, and place it in a virtual cookie jar.  The theoretical money in the virtual cookie jar goes to our future HDTV.  There’s also an accounting spreadsheet that I am tracking all this.  I have been standing on the various deli counters weekly.]

I have noticed that it’s not a formal affair ordering at the deli counter. You don’t just give them your number, place your request, and walk away at the end.  There’s a lot of…. conversation.  Everyone is talking, the deli clerks are giving recommendations on the cuts of meat and cheese, they’re asking how you want it (thin or think sliced), and the deli clerks will even give you a slice or two to taste before you get locked in to your 1/2 pound of oven-roasted turkey.

Maybe this is normal, but doesn’t it strike you as odd? I’m not saying it’s wrong at all.  Frankly, the way we spend our workdays screaming at backstabbing each other, it’s mildly refreshing to see such a relaxed and friendly atmosphere…. at the deli counter. I wonder why it’s so friendly and jovial? You wouldn’t chat this much while placing your order at a pizzeria, would you?