By Hayleigh Gowans
Grocery shopping is something that everyone has to do on a regular basis, but some people, like myself, may dread doing it each week.
I wanted to briefly go over the history of grocery stores and how they got to where they are today. According to groceteria.com, chain grocery stores usually less than 1,000 square feet came into popularity in the early 20th century, and they sold mainly non-perishable and canned food. Meat, produce and other home goods typically had their own separate shops.
The idea of self-service shops came into play in 1916 when the first Piggly Wiggly opened in Memphis, Tenn. In the 1920s, the idea of chain stores and supermarkets were gaining popularity, and shopping at a supermarket involved having all of the items a house could need — canned goods, meat, produce, a bakery, cleaning supplies — all under one roof.
Since then, owners of grocery stores and supermarkets have thought bigger and bigger — eventually moving to warehouse and discounter stores starting in the 1970s. Today, shoppers have so many choices of where they can purchase items for their house. Owners of supermarkets are constantly coming up with ways to make shopping more efficient and also better at selling you things. It’s normal that many people can feel stressed while getting their shopping done, and it can be easy to forget your manners.
The following are some tips I found in the 18th edition of “Emily Post’s Etiquette” and on various manners blogs to keep in mind when shopping:
If you have problems with big crowds, try going shopping at a time where it will not be very busy. I try to do my shopping on week nights after dinner as it is usually the least busy time for shopping.
The biggest piece of advice I would give for going grocery shopping — stay calm, patient and courteous. Take a deep breath, allow other people to pass by you and don’t get annoyed if another patron is pulling off a manners misstep of their own. At one point or another, we all have to go to a grocery store. Why should we make it a bad experience for the other patrons or employees by leaving our manners in the car?
If you have any questions or to suggest topics for discussion, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Until next time, mind your modern manners!
I am a reporter for the Eagle Bulletin and Cazenovia Republican at Eagle News. I report on topics ranging from town and village government, business, news and features. I am a 2014 graduate of the Roy H. Park School of Communications and have a degree in Journalism and a minor in Psychology.