JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

Some serious Albertsons bullshit

We have two supermarkets within a 10-minute drive from our house—Ralph’s and Alberstons.

I prefer Ralph’s.

The wife prefers Albertsons.

I’d argue there’s no clear-cut dominant grocery shopping experience. The selection at Albertsons is a bit better. The employees at Ralph’s are a bit more familiar (meaning, people who work there tend to stay a long time). I like the deli at Ralph’s. I like the bread at Albertsons.

Again, it’s a coin toss.

Well, was a coin toss.

This evening I was talking with one of the Alberstons’ cashiers, who said staffers have been ordered to remain quiet and say nothing if a customer isn’t wearing a mask. He said he’s not allowed to ask someone to put on a face covering; certainly can’t demand one leave the store unless she/he breaks out a mask. “We used to be able to speak up,” he told me. “Now the company policy is clear: We can’t say a thing.”

This marks the second time I’ve been told this by an Albertsons worker—and I find it absolutely infuriating.

Many of the clerks are minimum-wage employees, working nine- and 10-hour shifts, masked 100-percent of the time. They stand there, often with only a single break, and face one customer after another after another. Here in Orange County, where morons (when it comes to COVID) reign in staggering numbers, that means standing inches away from myriad patrons who (“Hey, it’s a free country! MAGA!”) refuse facial protection.

So, to the Albertsons powers that be, I say, “Shame. Truly, shame.”

And don’t expect me back until this policy changes.