Online shopping – still a substitute for the real thing (unfortunately)

Posted: March 4, 2013 in Uncategorized
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Fresh green vegetable, isolated over white      sainsbury-s-produce-manager-rob-taylor-at-the-otley-store-pic-nigel-roddis-52471706

Before online shopping properly established itself about 5 years ago, I used to have my weekend blighted by a trip to the supermarket. Two angry hours spent confused by the price of broccoli to the sound of kids screaming “I WANT THE MONKEY CEREAL!!!”. Then at the end of it all, exasperated, I’d have to endure the embarrassment of a 14 year old asking for ID for my bottle of wine… Then double embarrassment, as I don’t drive and therefore don’t carry acceptable proof of age…

“Please young man, please let me have my bottle of fucking wine, I promise I’ll drink it responsibly”

“Sorry sonny, I’m working towards assistant broccoli pricer and I just can’t take the chance…”

So, when online shopping became simple (yes… it could be simpler) it was a real god-send. I trialed the big 4 and eventually settled on Sainsbury’s (ASDA: poor quality, Ocado: £5 broccoli). And mostly, Sainsbury’s has been good. Sure, they’re often late – a 7-8 delivery slot actually means ten past eight, but they always phone to tell me they’re running late…  And, the fruit and veg is usually ok and the eggs are mostly intact (11/12 ain’t bad!).  The problem I have with online shopping is the substitutions… the team in charge of this policy are clearly smoking some serious stuff…

“We’ve ran our of scotch eggs Paul!”

“No worries, give ’em a coconut”

Ok, so I’m exaggerating.  However, the policy for substitutions is devoid of all common sense.  Tonight, instead of 120g of salmon at £3.33, I was given two packets of 60g salmon for £4.58.  Instead of 100g of black pepper for £1.50, I was given 35g of black pepper for £2.60.  Furthermore, by substituting my salmon for the extra packaged option my ‘3 for £10’ offer became void.  Therefore, I paid over four pounds more for some extra packaging.  Now, imagine you’re in a store and the attendant came up to you and said:

“Hi sir, I’ve noticed you’ve got 120g of salmon there… can I interest you in paying £4 more for the same amount?  The best thing about this deal is that you get  extra plastic and foil…”

Would you even bother responding to this proposition?  No you definitely wouldn’t.  So why do Sainsbury’s insist on trying to sneak in a range of ridiculous substitutions at a time when I’ve got shopping bags hanging from my arms and ears? (they never tell me about the substitutions before decorating me like a Sainsbury’s christmas tree.)

Unfortunately, I guess if you want something done properly, you still have to do it yourself.  And if that means making a fake ID and telling the boy at the till that the brocolli is a lettuce, then so be it…

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