Sun | May 1, 2016

Celebrities pack bags for Yuletide charity

Published:Monday | December 17, 2012 | 12:00 AM
Glen Christian, chief executive officer of pharmaceutical distribution company, Cari-Med, pushes a supermarket trolley at General Food Supermarket in Liguanea, St. Andrew yesterday.

Nedburn Thaffe, Gleaner Writer

Packing bags at cashiers' counters and pushing supermarket trolleys are the last things you would expect to see the chief executive officer of Cari-Med Limited, Glen Christian, engaging in.

To take things a bit further, picture the usually classy mayor Kingston, Angela Brown Burke, cashing your goods at the supermarket counter, all the time on her feet with little break time.

No joke!

This was the scene at General Food Supermarket in Liguanea, St Andrew, yesterday.

Before you prepare yourself to pour out compassion, guessing that the two are the latest victims of the economic crunch, hold your horses! It was all for the sake of charity.

The two were among a number of Jamaican celebrities, including entertainer Ishawna, QQ, Tifa, Dr Wendel Abel, and others, who turned up at the supermarket to participate in the company's 'Celebrity Cashiers and Packers Christmas Charity Drive'.

Awkward at first

The charity drive was designed to encourage customers to donate to charity as they carried out their shopping. Things seemed a little awkward at first when the Cari-Med boss took up his position near the counter to start the workday.

"Anywhere you see them cashing, you can go there," Manager Sheryl Chung said to him.

"Oh, yeah. Anywhere I see them cashing," he said as he moved off, seemingly keen to please his new boss.

By the time the other celebrities trickled in, Christian had got the hang of things and was behaving like a pro.

"I will push these. These are my customers," he said as he took over the trolley from another packer.

"So you not taking anything for the dog, or you don't have the dog yet?" he questioned the customer.

By this time, event promoter, Sharon Burke, who was sitting in a corner imploring customers to leave something in the charity trolley, had picked up on what was going on.

"Stop mek di bag bwoy talk to yuh. Him nuff, eeh," she urged the customer. Half an hour later on the job and Christian was instructing his celebrity co-workers what to do.

"Bag bwoy! Come mek mi show yuh how fi pack trolley, and rememba fi collect di tip, enuh," Christian said to psychiatrist Dr Wendel Abel.

A few minutes later, the Cari-Med boss was cooling off in a corner, clutching a bottle of coconut water and two packs of gums.

When questioned about how he was liking the job, Abel replied: "Not bad, you know. If you organise yourself, it can go well."

But for him, organising himself seemed easier in theory than in practice as he was often seen repacking goods.

Customer Angella Chaplain, from whom Brown Burke had earlier solicited sardines and cash for the charity drive, said the experience was a good one.

"It felt good to have these celebrities serving. Service must be in the heart of all Jamaicans," she said.