The Checkout Girl

How much do you know about what really goes on at your local supermarket? We see them every week and they are privy to some of our most intimate secrets — those we wouldn’t even share with our closest friends. To us they are the anonymous helpers for whom nothing is too much trouble. But for them, every customer has a part in a gripping soap-opera of lovers’ tiffs, family feuds and extraordinary innuendos — turning the daily life of a checkout girl into a hilariously entertaining farce. As we began to contend with the 2009 recession, Tazeen Ahmad realised that the supermarket checkout was the perfect place to gauge how the nation was coping with increasing job cuts, sky-high food prices and a billion-pound hole in our economy. The answer, it turns out, was with white bread, ice cream and lots and lots of potatoes. Sworn at, flirted with and at the receiving end of endless customer rants, the Checkout Girl has produced a deliciously gossipy memoir of life on the supermarket conveyor belt where each one of us has unwittingly had a walk-on part. Reading her story will change the way you shop for ever.

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