Don’t Leave Your Shopping Cart in the parking Lot, Please

We’ve all been there – busy shopping mall, grocery store, favorite strip mall sushi place. There’s not much parking, or none at all. You drive slowly eyes surveying the rows full of cars. Then you spot an opening. Lucky you. As you make your way to the open spot dodging moms pushing baby strollers, or annoying guy in a pickup truck backing into his spot, you hit your turn signal and make the big swing into the space, grinning widely as you snatch the one open spot beating the rest of the cars closing in. Then you stop. Someone has left his empty cart in the way wedging the two front wheels into the planter. The horns start honking from cars in both directions. You can’t pull into the space without hitting the cart and you can’t get out of the car to move the cart because you have your baby in the car.

Frustrated, embarrassed, and irritated you back out and look for a new space. The one right next to you opens up and is quickly occupied. The driver looks at you, looks at the cart, and shakes her head in disgust because she thinks you left the cart halfway in the planter and halfway in the space. You want to say: “That’s not my cart! It was here when I pulled in.” But it doesn’t matter. You have to find a spot before your baby starts crying and you can’t focus because the cars keep honking at you. You think: “How did I become the villain here? How difficult is it to return a shopping cart?”

Even if you have three kids and a pony you had to retrieve the cart to begin with so why is it so hard to put it back? Or even worse, why don’t people return the cart to the special shopping cart return space – even when it’s next to your car? Are we really that lazy, or inconsiderate? I understand those who may have physical issues, or the parent who just loaded five kids and 20 bags of groceries in freezing cold or blistering hot weather and now has to start the car to cool it down or heat it up. She’s not going to leave her kids to push the cart back to the store. I get it.

What I don’t get are those people who have grown so used to others doing their bidding that they assume some hired help, or someone else less worthy, will return the cart.  In the meantime abandoned shopping carts litter the parking spaces of America adding to the frustrations of people everywhere. If you are someone who doesn’t care about others then none of this matters to you (and I’m surprised you even read this far). But if you do care then please return your shopping cart. It’s not that hard. In fact, it’s not hard at all.

1 Comment

  • comment-avatar
    Dan October 2, 2015 (9:49 am)

    What’s worse is the motorcycle that was hiding in what you thought was an empty space. There are plenty of places to tuck a motorcycle in around a parking lot, don’t take a whole entire space Evel Knievel.