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The future of work: Being a cashier is Maryland's most common occupation, but it's likely vanishing

The future of work: Being a cashier is Maryland's most common occupation, but it's likely vanishing

Lester Watson began ringing up customers some 40 years ago at a five-and-dime store before he landed a job at Hutzler’s, the longtime Baltimore department store. He wrote up sales tickets by hand at first, calculating how much, with taxes, a customer owed. Later, he punched numbered keys on a cash register that did the math for him.

Now, the 59-year-old cashier works at Graul’s Market in Ruxton, all but teaching a master class in customer service. As he scans product codes into what’s now called a “point-of-sale system” — it tallies the total, accepts electronic payment and prints a receipt — Watson asks a woman about her ailing husband, greets another in Spanish and uses a...

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