Friday, July 22, 2011

A Cart, A Cart, My Kingdom...

... for a shopping cart
Trader Joe's is not for slackers.  You heard me.  If you like to dawdle and wander aimlessly, go to Costco.  Go to Gelsons.  Do not go to Trader Joe's. To shop there, you need sharp mental focus and excellent eye-hand coordination.  You must know what you want.  You must go in and get it and get the hell out.  It's that simple.  The aisles are narrow and crowded with discount hunter-gatherers.  The shelves overflow with 42  kinds of humus, sausage, pesto and cheese.  You could lose your mind in Trader Joe's.  You could also lose your shopping cart, which is what happened to me yesterday.  I turned around and it was gone. I parked it by the basmati rice, I went to get a salad, I came back and my cart had skedaddled.

I started looking around, frantically, as though I'd lost a tiny relative.  "Have you seen my cart?! I've lost my shopping cart!"  A young mother took pity on me.  "Oh, no, that's awful.  What did it look like?" "Exactly like your shopping cart, only full of my stuff."  "What was in there?"  "I don't remember."  "Good luck," she said, all smiles.  But I'm pretty sure she gave her baby a look that said, "See that lady?  She's cuckoo."  Undaunted, I forged on.  "Have you seen my cart?"  "Who stole my cart?!"  "I want it back."

By now, you're probably asking yourself, what's the BFD?  Just get another cart and refill it.  Easy for you to say.  You don't own the cool, eco-friendly shopping bags, made from recycled CW promotional billboards, that were taken hostage, now, do you?  I didn't think so.  Maybe 10 people on the planet have these bags, and the SJG is one of them.  The market checkers go nuts for these bags.  They fawn all over me.  At this stage in my life, I'll take whatever attention I can get.  My cool shopping bags define me.  I walk into crappy-ass Pavilions, into Ralphs and Vons and the checkers wave hello.  Losing those bags would be nothing less than tragic. So, I retraced my steps.  I couldn't find it.  It was a lost cause.  Alas, poor Yorick, I knew my cart  was gone.  Gone forever.  GONE. 

Unless... oh, wait.. what was that over yonder?  Could it be my shopping cart?  My cool shopping bags!?  Yes.  Aisles and aisles away in the wine section.  How the @#$% it got there, nobody knows.  Nobody's talking.  The cart thief never came forward.  No apology.  No "whoopsie, took your cart, my bad."  What a chicken-sh*t.  People can be such a letdown at times. "Found it," I said to the young mother, who gave me a thumb's up, a look of, "You go, girl." "Yep, I got it back," I told an elderly gentleman. "What?" he said.  "I got my shopping cart back."  "I'm happy for you."  He didn't seem all that happy.  But I was happy.  In fact, I was ecstatic.  I got my shopping cart back.  Did, too. Hallelujah.  I got it back.  Praise the Lord.   As for my sharp mental focus, my excellent eye-hand coordination?  Uh, no.  Not yet.  Still looking.


  1. Thank goodness this nightmare has ended for you well! I've had the same thing happen & I always rush up front to the Trader Joes managers' desk & beg their help. They then make an announcement which does bubkis & I keep looking until I track down my cart. Damn you trolly thieves!

  2. Forget the cart...where do I find those bags?

  3. Trolly thieves! Luv it. And Candi(ce), sorry, sistah, you can't get those bags anywhere.

  4. Oh, how the Kansas City crowd would envy me with a few of those CW bags!! We had to wait in the vestibule for about five minutes yesterday to even get our hands on a cart at Trader Joe's. Not for the faint of heart. I kept my mitts on it at all times. Now, if not your shopping bags, please share some of your favorite TJ products so I can pick them up next time I am on crack and decide to return. Thankie.

  5. Veggie pizza. Breaded chicken tenders. Candied pecans. Oatmeal cookies. Olive oil popcorn. And wine. All good. All kinds.