Tuesday, April 23, 2019

I sure could've used a helpful smile last Thursday

I'll never again shop at the Hy-Vee Food Store at 7910 Cass St. here in Omaha.

Chalk that up to a young sacker named Kyle.

At 1:34 PM on 4-18-2019, I pulled into the parking lot of the supermarket in question. I'd been a steady, loyal customer at that Hy-Vee for twenty years, and that Thursday, I was in a hurry and trying to get shopping done prior to going to my own job in a local plastics factory.

After putting a trio of letters in the mailbox in front of the store, I ran inside the store...ahead of two other customers who were about to walk in.

Kyle, who was changing the trash bag in a wastebasket in front of the store, saw me, and told me: "Don't ever do that again...cutting in front of customers."

I turned around and saw Kyle.

I was flabbergasted.

I tried to explain myself, and that I was in a hurry, and that the week hadn't been too cool for me...but Kyle didn't want to hear from me.

I tried to apologize. Kyle still didn't want to hear from me.

Kyle told me- three times- to move on. Each time, he gestured me away from his view.

The way I see it, young Kyle was trying hard to show off his White Supremacist views.


At 1:36 PM, I found a manager on duty: Chris. And I told him about Kyle and about the way Kyle treated me.

Chris assured me he'd talk to Kyle, and assured me that I'd done nothing wrong and that I had no reason to apologize.

Got my shopping done at 1:48 PM that Thursday, still angry about the way Kyle treated me.

I even yelled inside the store...and that got me a reprimand from another manager on duty, Wendy.

So, to try and smooth things over, I apologized to Wendy and to the cashier who waited on me, Kay Lynne. (Kay Lynne and I had been able to get along quite well...and in fact, Kay Lynne showed much more understanding of the situation than Wendy.)

I continued to fume at my own job and couldn't wait to get home to send a nasty email to the store director at that Cass Street Hy-Vee (also known as the Peony Park Hy-Vee; a famous amusement park previously stood where that supermarket now does).

The angry email got sent off early last Friday; the next day, I heeded the message at the bottom of the receipt and took Hy-Vee's survey...and doggone right, I mentioned the 4-18-2019 incident.

In both documents, I mentioned that I'd never again shop at that particular Hy-Vee.

The store director emailed me and apologized for the whole thing.

Still, I'm going to start shopping at the Hy-Vee at 51st and Center Sts. here in the Big O.
I don't want to turn my back on the chain that promises "a helpful smile in every aisle."

I like Hy-Vee's wide selection...and that's the biggest reason I'd been shopping there all these years.

What I don't like is seeing racism in action.

And that's what Kyle, like too many others in my life, showed me.

Too many millions of Americans have felt emboldened ever since that walking toilet bowl gave that inaugural address on 1-20-2017...or ever since he won on 11-8-2016.

Kyle showed me he's one of the emboldened.

And I don't EVER want to be in his company again...for any damn reason.