Today I decided to treat myself to a ready meal for my lunch from Tesco, and I used the self service queue as I often do.
I scanned my three items and got ready to pay when, out of the blue, the screen warned that I needed approval from an assistant. I’ve experienced this before when buying beer or wine but hang on, I haven’t tried to buy any alcohol! My three items: a ready meal, a sandwich and a value pack of plastic cutlery.
This, I thought to myself, is utterly incapable of causing harm to anyone. Indeed, if I took leave of my senses and decided to barge into the town centre and threaten passers by with a plastic knife and spoon, I would be laughed at and probably happy-slapped all the way to the Pound Shop.
To illustrate just how impossible it would be to maim or even startle anyone with plastic cutlery, let me say that the first fork I used was not even sharp or strong enough to pierce the film on that ready meal. It snapped on the second stab.
Still, I needed approval from a hovering teenage peroxide blonde in order to purchase my 45p arsenal.
P. Hurford 2011