July 25, 2005

Take your cart back to the store!

I was at Home Depot and then at Shoppers this weekend when I noticed something particularly annoying - shopping carts in parking spaces. Yes, I realize that this is a fairly common occurrence, but it something that people need to stop doing!

Do you remember when you could not move shopping carts from the front of the store because they had barriers preventing you from taking the carts away? Now, to make the life of the consumer easier, these barriers have been removed. Many stores even have shelters in their parking lots so that you can put the cart in it, instead of having to walk the entire fifteen miles back to the store. Despite this convenience, people think that it is appropriate to simply leave their cart in the parking lot to make their zippy getaway after loading their trunks. However, this is more evidence to what a selfish place our society has become.

Nowadays, it is not uncommon to see people push their carts down the street, to the bus stop, or even all the way back home...and to see these carts left there. While I am sympathetic of people who have a large load of groceries to take home, they must explore other options to get their food home. Maybe purchasing their own cart to take things home in. Or making smaller purchases. Or having a friend take you to the store if you have to buy many things.

Here is the bottom line. I am not saying this to be mean spirited, or uncaring about folks who just need to get their groceries home. But if people think the shopping cart is theirs when it isn't, other people's lives are affected. People can't park their cars in spaces that someone left a cart in. A grocery store's expenses rise when they are constantly having to replace carts "borrowed" for a customer's journey home.

The shopping cart does not belong to you. You borrow one from the store to place your items in, usually all nicely arranged for you when you walk into a store. After walking through the aisles, filling it with bread, milk, eggs, and cake mix, you go to a counter where your purchase is bagged and you pay for it. After purchase, you can either push your cart to the front of the store, walk to your car, drive back around and load your car avoiding the need to push your cart back after loading it. Or you can push your cart all the way to your car, load it, and then place the cart in a shelter or bring it back to where you borrowed it from in the first place. It is really quite simple actually.

I look out for you, you look out for me. So take a moment to step back from yourself and realize that there are others out there who you can directly affect by a simple action. While shopping carts are a very minor thing in the grand scheme of things, it is important to remember that if you can't handle small things, how ever can you handle big things? Think about it.

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