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When Is Okay To Have More Than 10 Items In The Express Lane?

I’m a bit of a stickler when it comes to the “express lane” in supermarkets.  First off, no Walmart “20 items or less” is not an express lane.  I kind of think that people who go to the lane when more than the allotted amount of items are jerks. Here’s the question though?  What if there is NO ONE in line at the express lane.  More after the jump.

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This is based on a real incident.  A friend was picking up a few items.  They had it in their head that they had few enough that they could use the express lane.  Then at the last minute, they traded one desert for like four mini-cakes or whatever.  Seeing that no one was at the express lane and no one was even in site of the lane, they rolled up.  At that point the checker took the time to do a quick count of the items and refused to check them out (at this point my friends just walked away their cart, complained to the manager and left with no groceries).  I personally have NEVER heard of this happening, and in most instances the express line person will say “I can get you over here” if the other lines are full.

So, you heard the story, what’s your call or commentary on this?  Is it okay to go to the express line if you’re a little over and there’s no one around? Should you wait to be asked?  Was the cashier a dumbass?  What would you do?

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