Idly, from behind her counter, Leah watched the Sunday shoppers bring up their carts. Checking groceries didn’t require her full attention, so there was plenty of battery power left over to classify the customers by genre and genus.

Students from O’Knesyl College were easy to spot, as their carts were full of beer and things that only tasted good while drunk, like Cheez Doodles. They almost always paid by credit card, and the names on the card often didn’t match with the sex of the person using them.

Then there were the people who pulled into the “9-items-or-less” aisles with fully loaded shopping carts and the people who stood in regular lines to buy single bunches of bananas. Management had made it clear to Leah and everyone else that customers were not to be turned away no matter how grossly they exceeded the item limit; often those “express” lines moved slower than any other.

Most entertaining were the cart derbies that sometimes went on, when two shoppers noticed a short line or newly opened register and would dragrace for it, trailing screaming children and knocking down passersby as needed, all for an extra few moments. Maybe that’s why Nascar is so popular with our shoppers, Leah mused. It gives them the cutthroat racing skills they need to cut off other shoppers every Sunday.