Reprise of a pet peeve

Supermarket carts are too frackin’ big. Look around your local store and see how many carts are full. One in ten? Yesterday at my local, the Manager was near the entrance pretending to be glad to see the customers and pretending to be willing to hear their comments. He wasn’t getting much business, so I thought I’d make an inquiry; surely there’s no reason to clog the aisles with unnecessary oversized carts?

This would do fine

I asked why not two sizes of carts. He said we have carry baskets. I said yes you do, and they’re wonderful when I”m gathering a few lightweight things. Lightweight things. So why not two sizes of carts on wheels, I asked. And the man looked at me as though I’d asked him to undress and do an Irish jig.

There is, no doubt, some marketing study of human behavior that underlies the continuing use of the big cart, even as families have shrunk and households are increasingly composed of a single person.

I am sure they think we’ll be compelled to buy more and fill that basket. And I’m also pretty sure they’ve never done the two/three times a week supermarket shuffle.

Enough with the giant shopping carts. (I’ve posted about this before, but no one listened.)

19 responses to “Reprise of a pet peeve

  1. Right on, Moe. Whole Foods and even the largest health food stores have figured this out. They often have double decker smaller carts that the hand carried baskets fit in as well as deeper larger ones. I’ve never been inclined to fill a cart, don’t care how big it is. Maybe these chain markets plan for folks who do once-a-month shopping because it’s 100 miles to the store.

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    • Except of course, most people live within 5-10 miles of a store. And we have, what?, 7 or 8 withing five miles??? I think they just get stuck in what they’ve always done.

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  2. The Other Steve

    Sweetbay has small carts. . .not many, but they exist. I like them too!

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    • And honestly, how often to you see people fill the big ones any more? Back ‘in the day’ people had larger families and loaded those carts . . . .long time since that’s been so.

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  3. I agree with you, Moe. Sweetbay is the store in Venice with the smaller carts. Publix is the worst offender if you ask me… especially when they fill the isles with crappy promo displays of garbage I would never buy. I went to Sam’s Club the other day to buy one item (as I work across the street from them). As I walked in the store I asked the greeter if they had hand baskets (just for kicks as I knew they didn’t). Her reply: she rolled her eyes and sang, “NO” as if singing “WHATEVER!” I don’t expect her to pass the idea along to management.

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  4. Moe,

    I am waiting for the rest of the story.

    So tell us, did the manager undress and do an Irish jig? Inquiring minds need to know.

    Yeah, yeah, I know, inquiring minds need to get a life.

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  5. Sweet Bay has the cart you pictured but they are so popular, they are hard to get. Should ell somebody something. They also have the best produces section in town.

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    • Well, that’s three votes for Sweetbay! I’ve stayed with my local Publix becuase it’s so very convenient andd because, as an older store, it’s quite small compared to the others. And I’m way into small.

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  6. My grocery stores have the small carts. I heard the manager one day trying to explain to a woman why he couldn’t RESERVE one for her. There are people who still fill the large carts, too. Usually in my check-out line… and they’ve gone back to get something they forgot.

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    • In front of me in the line, it always seems to be the same lady (sorry, always a lady) who stands and watches while everythiing is rung up and bagged. Waits to be told the amount owed. And then, and only then, she opens her purse and begins to look for her check book. And pen.

      I think I can now recognize this generic type of her when she’s in my line. When I spot her, I desperately want to lean forward and suggest that maybe she could start looking for her check book NOW dammit.!!!!

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  7. PS> Harris-Teeter, Fresh Market, and Earth Fare all have them here.

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  8. Actually market in the northwest have small carts.

    You’re welcome to move here, but be prepared for about 65% less sunshine than you’re used to.

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  9. You could simply pay for her groceries if your checkbook is out and at the ready! Maybe it would flatten the income distribution a little.

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  10. The Bigger carts are EASLIER to dodge when people just let go of them and walk away …..
    And they ROLL at YA!

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  11. Just the other day I was thinking about the evolution of the shopping cart. As we know, at some point they got bigger, but I wonder how that correlated with the aisles getting smaller.

    So at the grocery store I most often visit, we have a choice of two baskets, the mini-shopping cart, the regular shopping cart, regular cart stretched into a race car for the occupy the child, and the motorized cart.

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