Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Stealing from Grocery Stores

I'll say it loud and I'll say it proud - I steal from grocery stores!

It's not that I have 7 starving children at home that I have to provide for and welfare doesn't give me enough aid to do so. It's not that I have a debilitating illness that keeps me from holding a steady job and my disability checks aren't large enough to put dinner on the table. It's not that I lost all my money in the economy that George W. Bush built.

No, I steal from grocery stores because I can.

Right after college, I had this roommate that worked at a Whole Foods precursor in Miami. While getting his master's degree, he earned extra cash ringing up overpriced gourmet meals, organic vegetables, vitamins, soaps, and other crap upscale health food stores charge insane amounts of money for. He and I made a deal. Every day or so, I would go in there and fill up a shopping cart with the most expensive shit in the place. Then, when I went to checkout, he would ring up $10.43 or some other sub-fifteen dollar sum. No questions asked.

In return, I would share the spoils with him when he got home. We'd barbecue Maine lobster and Kobe beef, we'd dip Beluga caviar and goose liver pate, we'd drink French wine and Belgian ale. It was glorious. Eventually, my roommate quit his job and he's now a high school principal. The store we robbed was acquired by Fresh Market for some crazy sum. I didn't get caught, my roommate didn't lose his job, and the store didn't go out of business. Truly, a victimless crime.

Later, when I moved out to Colorado, I got a job as a janitor at Eldora. At that time, I actually was hungry and I didn't have food (I spent my whole salary on weed and booze). One of my fellow janitors used to work at King Soopers. He told me that they had a policy - they would never prosecute anybody for eating inside the store. It was like this unspoken rule - anything consumed under their roof was free. For the rest of my tenure as a janitor, I spent most of my off time at King Soopers eating. Shit, I brought dates there. I hosted business lunches there. When my parents were in town, I took them out to dinner there. Not once did I get in trouble.

From those two experiences, I learned a few valuable lessons. First, for the most part, nobody notices when you steal from grocery stores. Second, except in extreme cases, nobody will punish you for stealing from grocery stores. Third, stealing from grocery stores hurts no one. And fourth, food stolen from grocery stores tastes really, really good.

So now, even though I no longer need to steal from grocery stores, I do it as much as I possibly can. And why not?

With my limited knowledge of economics and accounting, here's how I see it: Grocery stores know that people are going to steal from them. Subsequently, they mark up their prices to account for the presumed theft. That means that the people that don't steal pay for the people that do steal. Doesn't seem fair to me! I'm not going to let bums and indigents benefit from these one-sided policies at my expense. I want my piece of the pie -- if that pie is made by Safeway, even better.

When I go shopping, I immediately order some prosciutto and imported cheese from the deli. I make my way to the bakery where I grab that fancy bread, the stuff Mitch Hedberg talks about. I get the non-Kraft mustard from the condiment aisle and the organic lettuce and tomatoes from the produce section. I then consume a free delicious sandwich as I shop. That's just the beginning. Soon, I'm devouring eggs and donuts and Jello and pizza and meat, sort of like Belushi in Animal House. I eat everything I can. Hey, it's not like I'm gonna be arrested.

Next, I stuff small, but expensive items like olive oil, chopped garlic, macadamia nuts, and filet mignon inside potato chip snack packs, cereal samplers, fabric softener boxes, or anything with a little excess room in the packaging. Chances are, nobody will expect me to hide these products (macadamia nut theft is not yet a major epidemic). So, I pile them away. I also slide non-perishable items like razors, deodorant, early pregnancy tests, and Magnum XL Condoms into my jacket pockets. I don't really look like a thief (no mask, no striped shirt, no large sack over my shoulder), so nobody imagines that I have the Fort Knox of toiletries on my person.

Then, I throw large products like kitty litter, Gatorade, and toilet paper on to the bottom rack of the shopping cart. Upon checking out, no one ever looks at the bottom rack. They think you'll be honest and alert the checker to what's there. Honesty's for suckers. I just pretend that whatever's beneath eye level doesn't exist and I walk out of the store saving forty or fifty bucks. I rarely get caught doing this, but when I do, I claim ignorance. It's an obvious oversight because I, much like most checkers, don't look that low. Anyway, they got some fucking nerve charging twelve bucks for a 16-pack of toilet paper. It goes in your ass. It shouldn't cost that much.

If I don't have anything in the bottom rack, I head to the self-service checkout line. They expect us to ring up our food ourselves and not steal? Crazy! I pretend to run things over the scanner and make that little beep sound with my mouth. I'm the Larvelle Jones of shopping. When I "accidentally" miss some items, nobody knows any different. I love exploiting trust!

Over the years, I've stolen tens of thousands of dollars worth of food. I make a good living and, for all intents and purposes, I shouldn't steal anything. Well, I steal from grocery stores for reasons that go beyond frugality and avarice. I like to stick it to The Man. Yes, as the owner of a business, I could be perceived as The Man, but not The Man that owns grocery store chains. There's a Man hierarchy and I fall lower on that totem pole. Plus, in my business, I get it stuck to me all the time. I have clients that won't pay and employees that take advantage of my generous PTO policies. It's time for some payback! Stealing from grocery stores is my way to get paid, biatch!

On another note, in the grocery store parking lot, I don't appropriately put away my shopping cart. I just leave it dangling in the middle of the road and go on my merry way. You might think I do this to be an asshole. However, I actually do it out of benevolence. That's right! If I put my shopping cart in the designated shopping cart depository, the retards and the Mexicans and the old people whose job it is to collect carts won't have a job. I just can't have that on my conscience. See, I'm not all that bad.

16 comments:

Suzanne Lainson said...

I hear they eat children in Ireland. :-)

Nick said...

My comment is this....

at the chain stores like wallgreens or ralphs or any of the big stores that have the security cameras...do you think they all have people that actually watch for people stealing shit..or is it just for show so people think they are being watched.

Maurice said...

i steal from grocery stores too. i was googling it for more ideas on how to do it. fucking awesome man. and nick, the cameras are all on display in the manager's office. but don't worry, nobody there is legally allowed to restrain you or anything. all you need to get away with it is balls.

xliquorandlovex said...

Today was the first time I've ever been caught stealing food/drinks from a grocery store.

I usually casually drink a coke or whatever as I'm walking around the store, then as I'm about to leave go to an aisle and "accidentally" set it down and forget about in on a shelf.

Well I did that today, then I paid and walked out to my car. Right as I was putting my stuff in the trunk, one of their "cops" came up to me and asked if I'd like to pay for my drink!

I did of course, but those assholes probably owe me a dollar or two down the line. When I'm paying $30 for dog food, the can spare me a drink ever now and then.

jqnotu said...

You're a terrible messed up person and you should go to jail. Have you ever heard of mystery shoppers and loss prevention? You should work at a grocery store and see what it feels like to see fucked up people like you being dishonest, guiltless, conscience-less. You're pathetic and you're what is making society trash. Karma will get you someday.

mryjane69 said...

I have worked at grocery stores. 5 of them to be exact. And what did it lead me to do? Steal groceries. The amount of food that is WASTED, seriously, thrown out is ridiculous. The mark up is usually 100%, on everything. And so one person going through the line is breaking even for them. I fill up all my bags in the little premaid bags and just walk out of the store. Whole carts of groceries, like he said, because I can.

BEAUTIFEYEZ said...

You're freaking awesome. ..I eat every time I go to the grocery store.....why would someone call you a messed up person, people like you do not destroy our economy, but help even out the unfairness.....have you ever seen how much food is wasted in america (oh that's not a crime)....OMGEEEEE........why should me and my family go hungry if there is an open grocery store..... ITS AMERICA PEOPLE.....EVERYTHING IS STOLEN.....

Ronit said...

My favorite trick is to ring all of my produce up as bananas. Cherries are no longer $5.00 a pound when you ring them up with the produce code "4011". Now I get my cherries for 89 cents a pound. The other day I banana'd a box of condoms and got it for 8 cents!!! Amazing, and no one ever notices!

Carolyn said...

A purse, diaper bag, or baby car seat goes a long way when it comes to stealing from grocery stores. No one is suspicious of a bulging pack of goods when you have some justification for a suitcase sized bag. A few haphazard diapers poking out of the top can also deter wandering eyes. Plus if you ever do get caught... "naughty kids, what are you messing with in there". Exploitation of a minor, you say? Naw, they need to earn their keep.

hilol said...

Every week or 2 I go to the local superstore and steal over 50$ worth of overpriced stuff sometimes over 100-200$ and ive been doing it for 2 years at 2 different locations. The best way I've found is going in with 1 or 2 pre-made cloth bags get a hand basket or a small cart and load the bags with groceries u want to steal (nobody has ever asked me if i was stealing it, if they did I would say I was just separating the items because I am shopping for somebody else too) I would go to the checkout with under 20 dollars worth of cheap groceries I am going to buy (its much less suspicious buying a few things rather than risk walking out the door) I would unload the things im buying and pay for it and have my 2 bags im stealing at my feet and carry them to the end of the checkout when the cashier is distracted. pay for my items bag the stuff I bought and carry the stolen goods out with it. So simple ive never been caught and have massed at least 10,000 dollars. and not as much as a question just a smile and a goodbye

nrzn said...

I worked at a supermarket for a few months about 10 years ago and stole thousands of dollars in cash from the place. I made way more money from theft than from my wages. And I'm talking cash - not goods. Its funny to me that the lowest-paid employee in the organization is probably the one who can do the most damage.

I started off by not ringing up things for my friends. At the place where I worked, once you press the deli or produce button, the laser scanner turns off. Then you can put on the show for the camera by swiping the product over the scanner, then put in any amount you want. I would charge my friends a few dollars for hundreds of dollars in stuff. Usually a cart load of beer.

THENNNN I expanded my repitoire. After a few weeks working there, I was able to tell who the regular customers were, and while I totally should have been caught for this, no one ever snitched. If the person had expensive items or items under the cart, and I knew they were paying cash, I would offer to not ring it up in exchange for half the value in cash. And there was some plausible deniability for both of us. "I swear I scanned it! I didn't see it!" Anyways, no one ever said no. In fact, after a while, I would have really long lines while the other cashiers had only a few people. So, if someone was getting a bottle of champagne and a big bag of dog food (with other groceries of course) I could make $40 in a few minutes. And thats what I did for people I liked.

For people I DIDn't like, police especially, if they paid in cash, I would sort the money so that I put a one dollar bill on the $10 slot in the tray, then at the last minute before closing the drawer, I would go omg! Thats a single! I need 9 more dollars. I have actually done that by accident so even an honest employee can do it.

Finally, after being at a boring job all day every day you start to learn the flaws of their equipment. Basically I figured out how to open some of their cash drawers manually. So I would rob the other cash registers. That I feel kinda guilty for because it makes the other cashiers look guilty.

I also figured out how to get the register to print the shift sales so far (a no-no to let employees know that) but I never bothered with that because you only get a few bucks per shift.

However, I don't advocate the cool crime of embezzlement. If I had been the manager, I would have caught me. The managers at the store where I worked were given their positions based on the clothes they wore, not on their competence. If they had better tracking of their inventory and sales, they would have seen that they were losing valuable inventory and not selling it. Then they could have more closely checked the cameras and receipts and I would have been busted. Instead, I was considered their model employee because I was happy to take extra shifts LOL. They were sad to see me go but I needed to flee the scene of the crime before anyone caught on.

But let me just say I was broke and homeless after someone I trusted stole my money. I could make $40 a day legally or $200 a day illegally. I was desparate at the time and haven't stolen a thing since.

TheGoodThief said...

I agree with Maurice and you man I steal alot of food/beer/condiments/meats from 3different locations in my area but I made a rule 2myself not to steal from.my home grocery store CAUSE. WHY WOULD I SHIT IN MY.OWN BACK YARD... at one of the locations which I roughly stolen in beer alone around $500 in half a year has two security guards in.the store.... Ive been bringing the shopping cart with me outside n flaunted a old receipt to.make it look like I purchased something :) *I dont feel bad 4 stealing booze or food but I.wanna stop 1 day* When.im.a family man ill let all the non sense go, in the mean time ima steal as much food n booze as possible :) Im not a bad person just a thief when I wanna be tight on money.... Seriously not to be cocky iknow im good at it its was safer then.breaking into.peoples cars WHICH IVE DONE IN THR SUBURBS TO RICH FOLKS Ill continue doing this and better my craft THIEFERY FROM GROCERY STORES IS A ART 2 me THANKS 4 the POST

8d03c038-3881-11e3-8fe3-000bcdcb471e said...

TO RIPOFF STORES DO THE FOLLOWING:
1) PLAN AHEAD YOUR ITEMS AND GET IN AND OUT FAST! NO MORE THAN 3 TO 5 MINUTES. (CRITICAL ISSUE)
2) GO ON OFF HOURS LIKE EVENINGS, NIGHTS BETTER. WHY? THE LOSS PERVERTS (LP) ARE USUALLY ON DAY HOURS. NIGHT SHIFT EMPLOYEES DO NOT CARE!
3) LEAVE WALLET,ID, AND KEYS OFF YOUR BODY! THESE JUST INCRIMINATE AND INTERFERE WITH POCKET SPACE. WHY HELP IF CAUGHT? LIE, DENY, & ESCAPE! POLICE HAVE BEEN CALLED IF U ARE IN WALMART OR HOME DEPOT
4) (ME, NOT RECOMMENDED) I CARRY A WEAPON AND I WILL DEFEND MYSELF AGAINST LP-HOMOS TOUCHING ME, WITH A DELIBERATE NON-EMERGENT SLICE. DO NOT DO THIS UNLESS YOU ARE WILLING TO TAKE CONSEQUENCES AND KNOW HOW TO USE A WEAPON!

8d03c038-3881-11e3-8fe3-000bcdcb471e said...

Oh...and the DUMBASS NAMED NICK...GO AHEAD Dope! Go ahead and TEST to see if those security cameras work...IDIOT! THEY DO. AND THEY WILL CALL THE COPS AND PROSECUTE JACKOFFS LIKE YOU!
Another aid. Is to get a current sales receipt and some reusable bags. Then go shopping! place the expensive stuff in the bags. And then BUY some crappy cheap stuff! Checkers May ask, Usually not, cause they too don't give a shit! They may know, but WTF? Who cares? They get the Hours they want! Once in a GREAT Decade, you will get Mizz Dudley Do Right! Solution? You will know. Half way threw the order. JUST LEAVE! Do NOT say anything. It's a push or write off. Just GO! It's classic to see the Shit Look on her face when you leave All the Crap at her register. Then call the manager (at home) and tell them you saw her steal some groceries while you were there! Double Fuck You Lady!

Big Willie said...

I don't normally swipe expensive stuff but if i need to i most definitely will, such as calculators (when i attended college) phone chargers, and flash lights. Well mabe not too expensive of an item. Anyway I'd go to the hardware section swipe a package of box cutter blades and slice open the package of what i wanted and browse til i found an empty asile and toss the open empty package. Fear of an buzzer and pissing my pants id go in the restroom and check for the magnetic alert strip or whatever you wanna call it. But i mostly steal deodorant, automotive light bulbs, small inexpensive items because i really rather not pay for it. Ive slowed down alot but if i want it ima get it haha.

Andrew Larson said...

You guys crack me up! I am an LP officer (Loss Prevention) and I run security at tons of grocery stores (Walmart, Kroger, Publix, K Mart, ect..) and we are trained to look for people like you guys. Sometimes we are in uniform and sometimes we're undercover. I catch people ALL the time trying to get away with the stuff you guys are bragging about and yes, stealing from these stores IS a crime and you WILL go to jail for it. I deal with big time criminals that do this for a living and will sell it on the streets for drugs. My company provides intel for our investigators who work with FBI and DEA. All we need is a good look at your face and if possible your vehicle and we will track you down. It's funny because you guys think no one is watching and you're getting away with all this but you are being watched!