Random Things I’ve Seen: The M&S Heist

crumpets-1385193_1920In part two of my new Random Things I’ve Seen feature (it is now officially a feature: I’ve done it twice), I’m presenting something I saw some time ago, but was recently reminded of.

This story takes place in M&S. A surprisingly high number of my stories in recent years appear to take place in M&S. I never went to M&S before I had children. I’m not entirely sure why I spend so much time there now. I still rarely actually buy things from M&S. Perhaps I subconsciously feel M&S is a place one should be when one is a mother.

Anyway, I was in M&S. Again. In the food court, this time. I was loitering, for reasons that now escape me, near the tills. I saw a lady sidle along the packing end of the tills and, unnoticed by the customer or the cashier, take a packet of crumpets that had just been scanned and put them in her own basket.

Now, had she subsequently left the store, this behaviour would have been a little strange, yes, but essentially it would have been shoplifting. Odd shoplifting, but shoplifting, nonetheless. She did not leave the store. Oh no. She took her basket of pilfered crumpets and returned to the food court aisles. Presumably to obtain more shopping. One can only assume that she went on to pay for the already scanned, and thus paid for by someone else, ‘stolen’ crumpets.

Did she believe the conveyor belts were some kind of weird moving shelving? Had she already ascertained that there were no crumpets left on the shelves and, gripped by her desperate need for griddle cakes, formulated an elaborate plan (based on the off-chance that someone at the tills was actually buying crumpets) to snatch some? Had she had seen this particular customer take the last packet of crumpets and tailed her to the tills? Was it a revenge crumpet snatch?

Or is this simply what passes as a heist in M&S? ‘This is not just a heist, this is a M&S heist.’


Interested in other posts in the Random Things I’ve Seen series? Click to read the first post, Random Things I’ve Seen: The Elizabeth I Dress


  1. The Tale of Mummyhood says:

    I love this series, it really makes me giggle! Looking forward to the next installment!


  2. Lorrie says:

    That’s just the weirdest thing! I kind of admire her unquenchable thirst for crumpets (despite hating the bouncy, nasty things #notevensorry) but if I caught her nicking my shopping, she’d be looking for new fingers, not crumpets. Cheeky woman!

  3. Ellen says:

    What??! That’s madness!! I am baffled. I’m going to have a crumpet with Nutella while I ponder it some more… I do think I’d notice if someone took something out of my shopping bag. On an unrelated note why did people used to refer to women as things like ‘the thinking man’s crumpet’? Or have I completely got that phrase wrong?! #StayClassyMama

  4. wendy says:

    Hahaha. I wonder what on earth she was actually doing? That is so odd, I bet it was baffling to watch. I really want crumpets now, I best be off to spy on the rolls at m&s xx #coolmumclub

  5. Tim says:

    Heh, great story! I remember when our eldest (now 8) was toddler-sized, he always dissolved into a tearful tantrum whenever we went in to M&S with him. Not any other shop, just M&S. To this day we have no idea what Marks & Spark-related previous event must have traumatised him so much …

  6. I suppose I would steal too if I was desperate for carbs, but this does seem a bit odd. I like Shoebox of Memories’ theory about her being a spy. Perhaps a new way to transmit information for ‘MissionImpossible.’

  7. Maria says:

    Oh this did make me laugh – how strange that she just pilfered them for herself? She must have been really desperate for those crumpets! hehehe

    Thank you for linking up to #KCACOLS and I hope to see you back again next week x

  8. The Pramshed says:

    What a weird thing to do! I hope you went to check that there were no crumpets left on the shelves, the other customer must have been so disappointed to get home and find her crumpets were missing. I’m a big fan of people watching but tend to miss things like this, my husband says I’m oblivious! I love that you wrote a blog post on this to share with us, thanks so much for joining us this week at #fortheloveofBLOG. Claire x

  9. Haha WHAT that IS random. Maybe she was hungry and felt like because they had already been paid for that she could eat them without feeling guilty? But where does the stolen guilt go? Did she know she was taking it from someone else’s grocery items? I have so many questions! Hahah thanks for the laugh and sharing with #StayClassyMama!

  10. lol! You made me laugh! I think she must have subconsciously saw you that you have saw her and pretended to subconsciously did not see you and so decided to undo her subconscious theft by going back into the store and tried to do a rescan crumpets. If the scan doesn’t work then she’ll put it back – but it did – so she had no choice but to buy the crumpets consciously. 🙂 Thank you so much for linking up with us on #FabFridayPost

  11. What a funny thing to do! Although the urge for tasty stuff does funny things to me too when I get obsessed, just not that though~!

    Don’t like the bounce of a crumpet myself, don’t fancy all my other chewed food having trampolining competitions in my tum when I’m not looking! 🙂 #KCACOLS

  12. Rebecca says:

    Haha!! Brilliant! How bizarre?!! But hey, for me, if it was the last piece of cake I’d probably do the same…and some people REALLY love crumpets…..! #KCACOLS

  13. Jen says:

    So Do I dare admit I had to find out what a crumpet was? Discovered they are called English Muffins here 🙂 Which are extremely tasty but not worth shoplifting are they? lol Awesome post thank you for sharing. #KCACOLS

  14. Mum in Brum says:

    Wow, she really did want a crumpet…I’m definitely with the belief that she saw the woman take the last packet and it was a revenge crumpet snatch. Got to hand it to her really – that’s pretty impressive heist skills ! #KCACOLS

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