Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Japanica! And Musings

Can you see where we were today? 
Lily and Jessie wanted to get together for lunch before Jessie and her band of merry travelers head up to North Carolina and sent out an invitation to us all. I was the one to suggest Japanica because it was in the right part of town to make it convenient and we hadn't been there in forever. 

And so we went and it was very, very good. When the server asked if we needed any to-go containers I said, "No. We are all little piggies and ate everything."
Which we mostly did. 
Levon wasn't there because he's in a little day camp at his old school, and Hank and May weren't there because they were working, but Mr. Moon was there and Rachel too. It was a fun feast. Maggie was in attendance too but was in the restroom when I took that picture so here's another picture with her in it. 

Yes. Mr. Moon got home last night around nine and I was so glad to see him. He and Chip both seemed to be in good moods and I think they got a lot done. 

Glen went to Verizon before lunch to see about getting a new phone and of course that is going to end up being a nightmare. Credit from our insurance will apply to the purchase of a new one but the new one has to arrive before that credit can be applied and so until that happens, he can't get the new phone. Of course after he does get it, he'll have to figure out his passwords to get his information from the cloud. He's already talked to Apple who have incredible tech support, unlike, uh...everyone else he's had to deal with today. I would be tempted to ask why life has to be so difficult these days but I suppose iPhone difficulties are less than nothing compared to the Bubonic Plague or World War I or II or even just dying from a small cut that gets infected which is how Glen's grandfather died. And didn't some king or prince die from infected blisters on his feet? 
I think so. All praise Neosporin! 

So. Yes. We have stupid problems but that does not take away the fact that they are annoying as hell. Still, good to keep things in perspective. 

Maurice does not seem to be holding a grudge against her beloved daddy after this trip away. She cuddled up on his lap this morning as she usually does. He says that when he needs to get up for another cup of coffee he will say, "I'm sorry girl, but it's time for more coffee," and she growls at him and then moves to the arm of the chair. 
She is not lacking in intelligence. Just manners. And a basic sense of civility. 

In technological problems of my own today, I went to self-check out the two books I'd chosen at the library, and the first one checked out nicely and when I tried to scan and check out the second one, it would not show up on the screen. I tried several times and nada. So I ended that and tried starting from scratch by scanning my card again and then scanning the book and I got a message that something like, "There's a problem. Either try to scan again or go to the desk for assistance."
I went to the desk where the guy (who now seems to do nothing) scanned my card and told me that indeed, I had checked the book out and that I'd just not done something. But if that was true, why did it ask me to try again to check out the book? And then to top it all off, when I went through the security portals, they lit up and beeped. I looked back at the guy who said, "It's checked out!" and waved me on. 
Even Publix is adopting self-check-out and I talked to one of the managers who was bagging my groceries today about that. I told her that a lot of people, me included, really enjoy that personal contact with another human being. And Publix employees always seem to be so polite and warm. There are folks for whom that short exchange of greetings and words is a main source of human interaction for them. The manager agreed. Beautiful Brenda has told me that there are people who go to Costco every day because that is their social life. 
I get it! When I was a young stay-at-home mother, those interactions with cashiers was a very important part of my wellbeing. That may sound sad but it's the damn truth. 
I think about all of this and sigh and then I think about how earth-shaking it was when gas stations went from having attendants who pumped your gas and washed your windshield and would even (do you remember this?) check under your hood? to self-service. 
And we lived. 

Costco has both self and employee check-out and I often use the self-check-out because generally, I don't have that many items. When I was there last week and going through the self-check-out, an employee came up with his scanner gun and said, "I can scan your items for you," and I said, "Well, thank you." And then I said, "How many people a day say, 'Okay, and you can pay for them too?'" 
He looked at me with such an expression on his face. 
"About fifty." 
"And it's funny every time, right?" I asked him. 
He did not bother to reply and I entered my debit card, paid, got my receipt and went on my way and you know why I asked him that? Because I wanted that tiny sliver of connection that says, "I see you, do you see me?"

Life is different these days and I guess we just have to adapt and get on with it. But we don't always have to like it. 

I'm going to go boil some crab legs and slice some tomatoes and avocado. Two feasts in one day. 
What a lucky girl I am. 

Love...Ms. Moon


  1. I do like that bit of a bedspread you have under the vase of zinnias. I must admit, when Kitty broke my grandma's vase, my second thought was "what will I do with the doily?"

  2. Human contact is very important. That is Trader Joe's secret. We need it.

  3. crab legs and avo? Eating like kings, you are! Yes....technology gets the better of all of us at times......as it did for me today as well..... ugh. Glad you had Japanica lunch before everyone goes their own ways! And SO glad Mr Moon is home.....and in Maurice's good graces!
    Susan M

  4. My library has started self checkout. Exactly like every time I try self checkout anywhere, I ended up needing a human being anyway. I couldn't check out another puzzle till the library staff got around to entering the one I'd returned.. it's always something!
    So I end up getting human contact anyway. But yes, it's important. There are days when that's the only face to face human I see. And it's not sad. It's lovely small change of daily life. Also I don't work there and I don't see why they should demand my services to save themselves $$ for staff.

  5. That is a truly beautiful green bowl for the zinnias. Japanica sounds wonderful and everyone there certainly looks happy to be there. I hope the phone gets sorted and operational quickly. I don't mind the self-service checkouts, but the five at my local store now have three of them labelled "card only" so I can't use those if I am paying with cash or if I am paying with a card but wish to get cash out. Then of course there are the people who go through with a full trolley of goods and don't know what they are doing so they take forever. They really were originally intended for small purchases, maybe a dozen or so items, not a weekly grocery shop. But what to do when there are only two manned regular checkouts?

  6. PS, I worked for a supermarket and often heard the checkout manager complaining about cutting shifts because believe it or not, they had a budget to work to and apparently the store "can't afford" to have all checkouts open with staff just standing there serving no one during non-busy times. "My" store only opened all 15 checkouts for Christmas Eve and New Years Eve and that was before the self serve thing happened.

  7. Some aspects of technology are, of course, great, but like you say, human contact (and service) is very difficult to replace!

  8. And they wonder why depression and loneliness is soaring especially among the elderly and nearly old. I do use self checkout if I am in a hurry but I will stop and exchange words with the person who stands there supervising.

  9. I really like that zinnia arraignment in that green bowl. Must have a "frog" under there!
    There should be a National No Self-Check Week. Just refuse to use them. My beef with self-check is that I'm already paying for the service of a cashier with the high price of the food...so I want it! They can so "afford" the staff, they just don't want to.

  10. I plain refuse using the self scan in the supermarkets. It just leads to more people being unemployed.

  11. Customer service -- that's an oxymoron, isn't it? Phone companies and utilities are always the worst.

    I'm just the opposite of you in a grocery store. I tend to always go for the self-checkout. I like interacting with as few people as possible. But it's different when you're a longtime customer in a small or medium-sized town and you can get to know the employees at your local shops, and they get to know you. That's harder in a big city, where there are different people there seemingly every time. (I do know the woman at our laundromat, though!)

  12. I like the reflection in the window of you and Lily when you are taking the photo of Maggie and the boys!

  13. the Walmart here is almost exclusively self checkout. they have one or maybe two actual cashiers. but, the attendants at the self checkout can check you out at their little monitor station. there was a line and I only had one or two items and the attendant offered to check me out! the grocery store however does not have self checkout though it's undergoing a huge upgrade and there is a space now that look suspiciously like one is going to go in there. I hope not. where else are the kids going to get jobs in this small town.

    and yes, I do remember when gas station attendants pumped your gas, cleaned your windshield, and checked your oil.


Tell me, sweeties. Tell me what you think.