While grocery shopping the other day, I took notice of a scale displayed prominently in the supermarket's produce section and remembered when the scale was an important part of my shopping experience.
That was in the '60s and '70s, when every cent counted; we had small food budgets in those days, during college and early in my marriage.
So when something was, say, 19 cents a pound, we weighed out a pound and wrote "19 cents" on our notepad, adding up as we went along.
Curious, I hung around the produce section for about 20 minutes, hefting papayas, examining lettuce leaves, touching the tomatoes, comparing cucumbers, comparing potatoes, and so forth, just to see if anybody used the produce scale.
Not a soul. Everybody just grabbed what they wanted, apparently not paying much attention to the prices. Like me. If I want a head of cabbage, I'm taking one, regardless of price.
My brother-in-law used to price items advertised in the Wednesday food section, then drive around Los Angeles to buy the cheapest cabbage, or eggs, or whatever, not concerned about how much gas he was using to travel several miles between stores. After all, gas was cheap (I remember 25 cents a gallon) in those days.
I guess supermarket produce managers put these scales out for the few who really and truly need to weigh everything they buy. God bless them all.