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Archive for March, 2009

Ask Dr. Friction

Q: What should I do when I’m pushing my cart down the aisle in a grocery store and someone has left her cart blocking my way?

Response from RealSimple.com (link here):

It depends on what’s in the cart. If it’s just groceries, feel free to move it over so you can roll by. If the wandering shopper returns to catch you red-handed, “say, ‘Excuse me―I had to get by,’ with a smile,” says Purdy. If the shopper has left her purse or baby in the cart, however, a hands-off policy should apply. Generally, “you can go around to another aisle―it won’t add more than 30 seconds to your trip,” Purdy says.

Response from Dr. Friction:

It depends on what’s in the cart. If it’s just groceries, feel free to shove it way the hell off to the side while loudly exclaiming “What selfish asshole left their cart right in the middle of the fucking aisle?” If possible, knock a bunch of crap off the shelf with the other person’s cart that they will have to pick up.

If the shopper has left her purse in the cart, take the purse and empty its contents into a cereal box. Then take all the cereal and dump it in the purse. Be sure to do this from the bottom of the box so the seal doesn’t appear to have been broken. Congratulations, you’ve just made somebody’s day! Some random person is going to open their box of Cap’n Crunch and instead find fabulous cash and prizes!

If the shopper has left her baby in the cart, smack that kid in the face with a loaf of frozen garlic bread. Nothing gets mommy’s attention like a child screaming in pain! When she returns to the cart, hand her the loaf of garlic bread with the face-shaped dent in it and say something along the lines of “I think your ugly child must have dropped this. I saw it fall off his/her face and out of your cart.” While not strictly necessary, it is also acceptable to cut a huge wet fart before walking away.

The important lesson here is: Don’t tolerate other people’s bullshit just because some delicate little flower behind a keyboard says it’s the “polite” thing to do. Which person is going to remember to park their cart off to the side next time – the one who successfully forced those polite people to walk around to the next aisle, or the one who tried to pay for groceries with Cap’n Crunch bricks she found in her purse where her wallet used to be?

~Dr. F

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