A 47 year old Newtownards woman is said to be in a ‘stable, but critical’ condition after she was asked to pay for her shopping in the town’s branch of Asda.
Eye-witnesses say that the woman, named locally as Donna Caddee, stood watching as the assistant scanned her shopping at the till, but appeared completely bewildered and unprepared when she was then asked to pay.
“The girl said ‘that’ll be £24.50 so it will’ and yer woman just stared at her like she wasn’t expecting it,” says fellow shopper Rab O’Tower. “Then she starts hoking in her handbag looking for her purse under all the make up and shite that women always seem to carry.”
“This went on for a good five minutes, but even when she managed to hand over the money she started pulling out voucher after voucher and getting the girl to check them,” Mr O’Tower continued. “Most of them seemed to be for things she hadn’t bought or they’d expired in 1984, it was a complete pantomime.”
After eventually paying Mrs Caddee struggled to her car where she passed out from exhaustion.
The Ulster Hospital’s Dr Crawford Burn-Beach says these type of incidents are not uncommon. “We call it Anti-Social Shopper Syndrome,” he told us, “it’s basically a condition which makes you a complete arsehole when you’re out shopping.”
Symptoms include suddenly remembering something as you’re about to pay and having to run to the far end of the shop, standing talking to your fat friend in the middle of the aisle, and taking 20 minutes choosing cheese so no one else can even reach the counter.
Away from supermarkets sufferers are also prone to parking at the petrol station’s only diesel pump before going inside to do their weekly shop, and they feel an urgent need to rearrange the contents of their wallets whilst standing at the cashpoint.
Fortunately, Dr Burn-Beach says that there is a cure. “Aye, it’s easy dealt with,” he told us, “nothing a good boot up the hole wouldn’t sort out.”