One pill makes you larger… but doesn’t make me like self-serve checkouts

I really don’t trust self-serve checkouts.  Everything about them is wrong.

I hate things which remind me that, fundamentally, all labour is able to be replaced by robots.  Sure, there’s no love lost between me and our ‘droid nemeses but I don’t like to be reminded about this struggle when I’m trying to get my groceries.

More specifically, I hate the blinding, confusing lights.  I hate how cramped the areas are.  I hate how it makes demands in its cold, ‘I will kill you while you sleep’ voice.  I hate how nothing makes sense.  I tried to buy a nashi fruit the other day and had to scroll through all of the fruits before I found it under ‘pear – nashi – white’.  I hate how you have to pack your shopping bag in a certain way in order to use the system properly.

But most of all, I hate how it still needs a supervisor to hover about the machines in case you need to pay by card.  Given that I live in the future and rarely use cash, this is basically all of the time.  It is faster for me to use the old system and, quite frankly, I prefer to speak to a real person.

It’s a haunting glimpse into our future: machines doing things for us and forcing us into incapacity.  First, it was the bank clerks.  The last time I went into the bank was in 2002.  Now, it’s the check-out chicks that have been made redundant by technology.  It’s only a matter of time before the more routine work of lawyers and doctors are outsourced to machines.

Author: Mark Fletcher

Mark Fletcher is a Canberra-based PhD student, writer, and policy wonk who writes about law, conservatism, atheism, and popular culture. Read his blog at OnlyTheSangfroid. He tweets at @ClothedVillainy

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