Thursday, March 5, 2015

Dog my cats! #sol15

Victorian market scene. Cart free. What a pleasure!
I am on a crusade.

Yesterday, on my way home from work, I had to park between two abandoned shopping carts. It was the only space available. The market was packed--winter storm trundling down on us and whatnot.

Dog my cats every time I pull into the parking lot: shopping carts. 

Is it just my neighborhood, but when did we get so lazy that we can't roll an empty shopping cart back to the storefront? It's on wheels, people. It's empty!

Somewhere within the last decade, food markets pitched in the towel on consumers. Realizing it was too much for us to roll the empty cart back to store for other customers to use, they hired employees to roll long trains of clattering carts back to the front door. All they ask of us is to roll the cart--did I mention it is on wheels?--into designated spaces.

If stores did not do this, we would bitch that we would have to walk back out into the lot--Ugh! can you imagine--to gather up a cart for ourselves. Driving in a food market parking lot is becoming a new hell. It can be a mine field of carts. 

Like beached whales, empty carts lay abandoned--wedged half-up on curbs, straddling lines between spaces, shoved onto mulched dividers--all over the lot. The employees have to gather our carts now too--we can't even roll an empty cart to a designated space. Often, when this lot is especially crowded, cars have to precision-park--steering while trying to avoid the obstacles. And I can imagine some markets have already been plagues by customers wagging their fingers about an abandoned cart scratching the paint on their car.

I am waiting for the sign to be erected: SuperMegaFood is not responsible for abandoned carts damaging any cars. Your shopping experience only ends when you return the cart to a proper location. And I wouldn't blame the store that started that movement.

Maybe we should have to check-in kiosk--our keys for a cart? They can pay a high school kid to watch hold our keys. The cart-for-keys movement would kick ass.

We'd all walk a little more before eating all of that food we just bought.

The abandoned, empty shopping cart--what an ultimate symbol of American laziness. We just load our cars with food--and leave the cart for someone else to roll back to the front doors. 

I'd like to us employ the ASPCA marketing strategy to kickstart this crusade. Maybe a commercial of sad, empty carts littering a lot. Sad music. A gentle voiceover--perhaps a woman we all venerate like Meryl Streep--could say, "Please. Roll your empty carts to the front door or to the designated space. It only takes thirty seconds and you could make all the difference in the world. And be sure to give someone the stink-eye if you catch them not joining in our crusade."

from A Victorian Slang Dictionary (1909)

Dog my cats (Amer.). An example of concealed swearing--God damn my eyes.

Dog my cats if she didn't make a nest of it and make three weeks on  the cuttings! --Newspap. cutting


  1. Hilarious post!! And SO true! I join your crusade and will think about you each time I roll the cart to it's home. Also, thank you for the footnote. I'm glad I stumbled upon your post as I now know a new type of slang... and one I just might drop to throw people off! :)

  2. Wonderful post! I love your repetition of carts on wheels. Even here where you put a quarter in to get the cart and get the quarter back when you return it, the parking lot is full of abandoned carts.

  3. Oh my gosh I could have written this post!! It makes me crazy when people don't return their carts. I've seen people leave them and the cart corral is two steps away! Great slice by the way!

  4. What an interesting play with ideas and words. Your skillful writing is very enjoyable to read. Your commercial ideas are appealing.

  5. Love the archaic phrase "Dog my cats." This post is genius. Great PSA idea, wonderful description. Happily, we don't have a huge orphaned shopping cart problem here. However, Costco doesn't provide cart corals, and one must heave the cart over a curb to push it out of the parking lot. We do it anyway because we're high quality peeps! Sometimes my husband helps relocate carts by pushing them w/ his SUV.