Karen in a

Supermarket Checkout




local imagine more likely
price check (3) pretty (2)
rice demand buoyant (2)
assault way (2) encumber
ounce goal (2) run/ran/run (2)
gleam horrify speculate
price sick (2) unthinkable
hope carefree responsibility
fear concern freewheeling
regret bonfire incompetent
rip (2) stranger store clerk
stare right now don’t care
jeep deep (2) drive/drove/driven (2)
weary cashier stand in line
stress sacrifice stand/stood/stood (2)
snack cashier beat/beat/beaten
screen raise (2) submission
across onlooker say/said/said
berate treat (2) know/knew/known
grant imbecile appreciate
verbal pudding wake up/woke up/waken up
career tantrum wear/wore/worn
bunch rip into sweatpants
half manager speak/spoke/spoken
vicious tell/told/told






Shoppers at a local Hannaford Supermarket could only imagine that the forty-two year old woman angrily demanding a price check on a package of rice pudding was more than likely a buoyant and carefree youth, too easy going to berate a cashier over a four-ounce snack cup:

Ranting and Raving Shopper: “No, no, no. The six-pack is $3.29, not $4.29. Run it through again. Okay, this is unacceptable. Every time I come to this store, there is something wrong and I’m sick of it. I am SICK of it!”

Sources speculated that the vicious tantrum would have been unthinkable to the woman during her early twenties, when her eyes probably gleamed with the fire of hope, unencumbered by responsibility, fear or regret.

Bill Domineau, Onlooker, One: “She was probably just some free-wheeling college kid. Her biggest concern was which one of her friends she was going to hang out with at night, and whether they were going to meet at the movies or a bonfire at the beach.

Now look at her.

You know, I bet if you told her ten or fifteen years ago, that one day she would be ripping into a grocery store clerk with a room full of strangers staring at her, she would have been horrified. It’s sad. It’s pretty sad.”

Ranting and Raving Shopper: “I have the circular right here, and it says $3.29, okay, right here.”

Onlookers said that very deep within the world weary woman was likely a girl that drove a hundred miles in an open back jeep and stood in line for concert tickets — all before being slowly beaten into submission by the stresses of getting older, raising a child and sacrificing her career goals for her husband.

Ranting and Raving Shopper: “I don’t care what it says on your screen. You know this is why people go to the store across the street, because of the way they are treated here. You know, nobody likes it here.”

Keith Woodacre, Onlooker: “It really makes you stop and appreciate the youth you have been granted because one day you wake up; your life is half over. And you are verbally assaulting a cashier over the price of rice pudding, while wearing sweatpants in public.”

Ranting and Raving Shopper: “You are all just a bunch of incompetent imbeciles. And I want to speak to the manager right.”

Erica Mayfield, Onlooker: “I can tell you right now that will never be me. That will never be me.”

*     *     *     *     *     *     *


5:00 am (Five o’clock am, five am). The scene was in a restaurant. This took place in a restaurant. True or false? Where did this take place?

6:30 am (Six-thirty am). Was a woman arguing with the cashier because the cashier had called her “stupid”?

8:15 am (Eight-fifteen am). Other customers in line were helping and supporting the woman. What did the other customers think of the woman? Is this right or wrong? Did they like her behavior?

10:47 am (Ten-forty-seven). Has the woman always been like this? Has she changed over the years?

12:00 (Twelve noon). Why did the woman change?

13:38, 1:38 pm (Thirteen-hundred-thirty-eight, one-thirty-eight pm). Can customers only shop at this store or can they shop at other stores? Is this the only store in the city?

15:11, 3:11 pm (Fifteen-eleven, Three-eleven pm). Were other people silent or did they talk about her?

16:52, 4:52 pm (Sixteen-hundred-fifty-two, Four-fifty-two pm). What did the woman want to do?


17:36, 5:36 pm Seventeen-Thirty-six, Five-thirty-six pm). I have seen “karens” or “darrens” in my community. Yes or no?

18:04, 6:04 pm (Eighteen-o-four, Six-o-four pm). Are some of your teachers, classmates, neighbors, bosses or coworkers karens or darrens?

20:43, 8:43 pm (Twenty-forty-three, Eight-forty-three pm). What do people think of karens and darrens? People love karens. They like them. They don’t mind them. They dislike them. They despise them. They can’t stand them. They hate them.

21:59, 9:59 pm (Twenty-one-fifty-nine, Nine-fifty-nine, pm). Are karens and darrens good for society, are they bad for society, both or in the middle? Should more people be karens and darrens?

12:00 (Twelve Midnight). What might happen in the future?

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