Land of the Free, Home of the People Who Pick Up After Themselves

Rant time. Sorry, it has to be done.

So I’m at Walgreens today (it’s like Eckerds or CVS, if you’re Walgreens-less), and I’m getting some water and some other thing or other (not the point), and I get in line behind this woman who is clearly not from this country.

Now, let me just pause here and do a side rant . . . my wonderful friend Tally has been waiting AGES to get approved to come to the U. S.; she’s been questioned and scrutinized and been all but autopsied and shelled out who knows how much money, and still she waits. And you know why? Because she wants to come here legally. As it should be done.

Actually, I have no idea how this in line woman at Walgreens came to be here, so that’s not really the point (actually, there IS no point, it’s a rant, after all.). She’s got coupons, and I don’t really mind that as using coupons is just good sense, especially with everything being so expensive. And her English is poor, and I don’t have a problem with that because at least she was trying to speak English, and I admire that. What drove me buggy was that she left her little blue plastic carry basket on the floor at my feet (where she had placed it to empty out her items onto the counter) and proceeded to pick up her bags and I guess walk out the door.


So I said, “Excuse me. Are you just going to leave this here? Right in front of me?” and raised my eyebrow at her quizzically (did I mention I’ve been a bit bitchy lately?). She picked it up and walked the four steps over to where the giant stacks of blue plastic baskets were and placed hers with the others.

Where it belonged.

Now this Walgreens I go to is a clean, organized store; there are not things flung about the aisles or on the floor, and there were certainly not any blue plastic baskets cluttering up the check out lines, so what on earth made this woman think she could and should just leave hers there? On the floor, at my feet? I would literally have had to either pick it up or step over it to get to the register counter.

Grrrr. When in Rome . . . put your friggin’ blue plastic basket back where you found it, k?


The pic is of Filene’s Basement’s annual “Running of the Brides” and is the only store and occasion of which I am aware (though there must be more because Friends had an episode of a similar thing in NYC) that one can expect to find stuff littered all over the aisles. See how she digs through those dresses on the floor? It’s a tradition. It is NOT how we regularly shop in this country, though.

24 thoughts on “Land of the Free, Home of the People Who Pick Up After Themselves

  1. that is one of those things that bothers me, too. usually what i experience, though, is the shopping cart (or trolley) that hasn’t been put back into the little corral that they have out in the parking lot. i don’t know how many times i’ve been sitting in the car while hubby runs into the store for something, and watched as someone places their cart right up against our car. like i’m not even sitting there watching them do it! and one time, i was sitting in the car and watched a woman come out of the store. where she was parked she could have walked two cars to her left and put the cart in the cart corral or two car spaces to her right and put it in the space where the fire hydrant was located. where do you think she put it? and if she’d put it in the cart corral, she would have been closer to her door! i just can’t fathom why it is so difficult to put a damn cart away? when i was 9 months pregnant, i still managed to put my cart away when i got done at the store. what the hell?

  2. It could be that she has some other mental issues going on upstairs and simply forgot.
    The fact that she placed the basket on the floor to empty the items is indication that she doesn’t row with both arms.

  3. I could join you in your rant on ignorant people in stores, but you said it well enough for us, I just got back from Costco and oh boy the winners I ran into!
    So I hear ya and feel your frustration! You spoke up though and at least you let her know she was being stupid, maybe next time she won’t do it again?!

  4. Oh gosh, how funny. I just read your post after I spent a hour and a half in a Home Depot! Shopping etiquette is always a iritating point for me. What pisses me off is the people in the grocery store that leave the buggy in the middle of the aisle and walk half way down the isle and expect people to work around their buggy. Somedays when you go shopping without weapons, your definately underarmed!

  5. OMG, congrats that you spoke up. I have a hard time with rude people. Some people think they are the only people on earth and to hell with the rest.

  6. Hey Fuzzy, we have Walgreens out here in California too! All of their stores are always clean and the shelves are always organized! That lady knew what she was doing, I’m glad you said something to her, she is an accident waiting to happen! I have to piggyback on Kerry’s comments, people are so lazy and rude when it comes to returning those shopping carts. I don’t know what they are thinking when they leave them behind someones car! What really irk’s me is when someone parks in a handicapped zone, who does not have the appropriate sticker or plastic card! These parking spots are so precious to those who need them. It gives them a little bit of freedom that many of us take for granted! I know this all to well as my Mother is handicapped due to Parkinsons! I am thankful though that there are so many wonderful people in this world and the good are everywhere to be found, I have also seen so many random acts of kindess! Take care Fuzzy…Michael

  7. LOL, ignorant shoppers, the bane of my life. I like the ones that leave their cart in the middle of the aisle…like they suddenly decided they’d had enough of shopping. And grrr, the people that sidle down the aisles really slowly, close to the shelves so you can’t get past them…then grimace at you when you have the temerity to say “Excuse me”.
    Older people (the one’s 65+) who think age is an excuse to be as rude as you wish…gets my goat when they accuse young people being rude, the amount of times I’ve had an older person shove in front of me in a store or a bus queue…then when I have the audacity to mention it they tut and say “When I was young, we respected our elders”…uh…fine…but you still could’ve said excuse me, jeesh.

    And people who set their bags next to them on the next seat on the bus…even when there’s people standing and you look at them in a quizzical way, they won’t move their stuff. I’ve resorted to sticking my stomach out as far as I can and pretending to be pregnant on occasion. That usually works πŸ˜›

  8. Woooo hoooooo…you’ve successfully got everyone going!! Hahah…I’m with ya, I hate rude, messy people!! And I’m sooooo agreeing with Kerry…how hard is it to push your darn cart over to the corral thingy??? Ohhhh, another grocery store gripe…people that decide they don’t want some “frozen item”..and then leave it on the shelf in the middle of the peanut butter or something…YOu just knowwww that the staff just eventually picks it up and puts it back in the freezer section (waiting for me to pick out the only spoiled one in the bunch..hahahah). Great rant post! :o)

  9. You go girl, you showed her :). Thats why I miss Massachusetts, everything goes smooth, here all sorts of people leave it every where trash every where. Beer cans, soda cans unbelievable, and you should see some of the Walmart shops. I will take some pictures and post it here, it is such a mess. The shoppers open different packages and place it everywhere, there is no common courtesy. Nobody leaves the door open for you when you walk, they rather shut the door on the face, when you open the door for them, they just walk by and don’t hold the door LOL :). Like in your case, if I try to put the basket right where at belongs, they look at you up and down, what is wrong with me πŸ™‚ . It is getting weirder and weirder.

  10. Oh, may I add a rant to yours, princess? I was in line at the post office yesterday to mail something off. Yes, I was in line waiting for the next available register. However, TWO people walked in front of me like I was not even there and went to the next open register. It is not very princess-like to do this, but I was fuming. Fortunately for me, the lady working the register knows me and saw this lack of courtesy, and she took me next. Take that, haters! ;-p

  11. Kerry, I am SO with you on the shopping cart thing! Why why why are people too special or fabulous to return the cart? How hard is it? And this usually happens at these ginormous super stores, so they’ve just walked two miles and can’t manage ten more steps? It’s just bad manners to leave stuff lying around like that; put it back. And not even where you got it (inside the store) but in those corral thingys. Sigh. I’ve had those trolley getting guys actually thank me for returning the carts, now that’s sad. What’s wrong with people? Those carts also roll into cars, and out in the aisles, too, so it’s not only neater and more polite to return them, but safer, too! Yay! Good vent, Kerry, I feel better, do you? lol

    lol, Pilgrim, too funny! That didn’t cross my mind, but now that you mention it . . . hehe

    She didn’t forget, River, I cut the whole paragraph about her looking at the basket, then at my feet and knees (she never looked up into my face). She looked at least four times at it, the first few times maybe to make sure she didn’t leave anything in it, but the last couple times were as she was paying/waiting for change, so she thought about it. Besides, she didn’t do the universal “I’m so embarrassed, can’t believe I forgot that” ducking blushing dance that would have indicated a genuine mistake. No this was no random act of thoughtlessness. She’s not crazy, just disrespectful and devoid of manners.

    LOL, Maggie, well, she won’t do it again if I’m around, that’s for sure! As soon as I said it, the cashier said “thank you” very loudly, so I know the woman heard her as she was only steps away putting the basket back. πŸ˜€

    See? I thought it was pretty funny, too, Michael. At least after the fact. Home Depot stories are fun, too!! Huggs

    Hey Bert, yeah, that sort of rudeness is just horrible to see. I don’t know if she had kids, but if she does . . . what must she be teaching them? Sad, really.

    Well, Michael, that’s very true, there are tons of good people in the world. Heck, if I’d been a better person, I’d just have put it back myself. Maybe I’ll strive to be that saintly (yeah, right). And I don’t use the handicapped spots, ever! I figure I’ll have plenty of time to use them when I get to that point, you know? Take care.

    OMG, Tally, the people who take up the whole aisle and then get all grumpy and amazed when you say excuse me drive me right slap up the wall. Why would you park your cart on one side, then stand your giant ass on the other side of the aisle, THEN have the temerity to get upset when someone politely says “excuse me”. What? We’re supposed to wait there while you read the label on every can or bag and whip out your calculator to figure out which one’s cheaper by the ounce or whatever? No thank you. Aisles are wide for a reason, move over! I was at Walmart, too, and these two girls and a woman were standing in a circle (triangle, I guess) at the top on an aisle, so you couldn’t get out or around them without going all the way back and around, so I say with a nice smile “excuse me” and they all three turn to glare at me. Imagine!! And they grudgingly slowly moved, but only because I stood there and glared back. Ugh. That stuff makes me nuts! Oh, the bag setters, hate those; if I’m feeling bitchy (as I have for DAYS now), I’ll go directly to those seats and make them move it and sit down next to them. It’s so wrong to do that, there’s a whole ettiquette thing that people on public transport are supposed to follow, and when it’s not followed . . . well, all of society will shatter. teehee. Okay, hyperbole alert. Huggs TFT!! πŸ˜›

    Goobers, they ARE all goobers, those rude not putting things back people. Yay Priceless Pris!! πŸ˜€

    Teehee, it’s a good one, huh, Azad?

  12. Yes, yes, yes, Ang, on the carts, that’s so true, and as to the people who just dump whatever product wherever they happen to be when they decide they don’t want it . . . ugh! I think Dante wrote in a special layer of hell for those people! I love these lime fruit bars, so I picked up a box, but when I got it home, they’d all been melted and refrozen at some point because they were all fozen down covering the stick thing you’re supposed to hold and they were stuck to the packaging and a total mess. I wonder if that’s because some genius thought they should put them with that peanut butter? Hmmm. Ugh. Why why why? How hard is it to put it back where you found it? Or AT LEAST back in the freezer section? Or just buy it? Why put it in your cart and roam around with it? Taking it for a walk? Huh? Okay, this vent thing is GOOD. Yay!! πŸ˜€

    Oh, Chris, that sounds horrible! Litter? I thought we got our stuff together with regard to littering and made that a rare rare thing; this is horrible news to hear. Why are people so mean to each other? I do know what you mean about doors, when someone hold one for me, I always say “thank you,” and they get all shocked because I guess no one ever does. Sad what we’re coming to really. And I know that weird up and down look you get when you do something polite or put something back, it’s so weird that doing the right thing looks so wrong to people. Weird and sad. But one by one we’ll just keep being polite, and maybe they’ll all catch on? We can hope.

    You know, Princess Ceres, I think this might be an age-related disorder because it doesn’t happen to me as much as it used to; guess I’m too old to rudely cut in front of. Um, or too big, but we’ll forget that one. ;D Anyway, I’m glad you maintained your Princessly stately manner, and see how it paid off!? Yay you!

    Thanks everyone for totally fab and fun comments. It’s nice to vent now and again, isn’t it? Huggs all ’round!

  13. Fabulous rant, Fuzzy dear…
    SOOOO many people are of the mindset that no one needs to exercise common courtesy anymore… OR responsibility for their own actions or inaction as the case may be. If I had been standing behind you in line I would have congratulated you for speaking up! On second thought I would likely also have done a HUGE double take and said, “Why ??! Is that YOU, Fuzzy??!!” and after mega hugs insisted on buying dinner where we could laugh and rant and relive the Walgreen’s moment. LOL… @@ hugs!! G. xo

  14. Hmmm,it could be worse. I once picked up a shopping cart and in it, someone too lazy to walk over to a trash bin had left a dirty diaper.

  15. The first time I went to visit the land of the free was no problem. I lived and worked in Sydney at the time, so I got a visitors visa there, no problem.
    But two years ago, when I worked in China I wanted to get a visa and I was utterly humiliated and denied one after they made me wait in a freezing room for more than five hours. Apparently it was because my passport was full of foreign visas, which looked out of place to the people working at this consulate in Shanghai. I only wanted to pop over with my husband to visit his parents who have been living in the States for twenty years, and we just happened to have a two weeks gap between jobs. The whole family was so excited, at the time they haven’t seen each other for seven years (which is nine by now). Hubby refuses to go to visit without me, so they will probably never see each-other, as my passport is still pretty full with visas.

    The questions went like this:
    What did you do in Taiwan? Why were you in Germany? Why did you get married in Australia? Why not in Ireland if your husband is Irish? What about Sweden? Why do you apply for a visa in China? How come you are a rep. of a German company if you are not traveling on a German passport? Why do you have a Hungarian citizenship if you were not born there? And so on. The info in my passport was too much for them to digest. I had steam coming out my ears, believe me.
    I have always been a hard worker, and it just happened that I ended up being a rep. for the company I work for in Germany, which ultimately meant traveling purely for work and always always legally. After this scenario I even stopped buying Californian wine, which I loved before hand.

    I love Europe, and I would never give it up to live the Land of the Free. And one day (in five years time)when my current passport expires and will get a brand new one, I will try to apply again. Not because I really want to go there, but because I want to see my hubby hug his Mom again after so many years, I want to see them cry from happiness. Till that day comes, they have to stick to the phone:)

  16. Sorry that u had to face it, and u did right that u spoke up! I would do the same. Actually, I ALWAYS do cuz it’s a common thing in every russian store. In fact, there r way too many ignorant people here, and it’s driving me crazyyyy cuz I know things won’t change in this country for a while. U mentioned one more thing I have to comment on – US visa issue. it’s weird, but from what I know it’s pretty easy for the people who want to immigrate illegally to get to yr country, but simple tourists like me and my friends who want to come spend vacation in LA or NY and leave some cash there face way too many problems. I wanted to visit yr country long time but I don’t, cuz I aint gonna have them doing my damn fingerprints in the embassy then have some ol’ dirty bustard officer interviewing me with question like “now prove me that u won’t give up yr family, real estates, job etc in Russia for being a slut serving US citizens??” U probably think I’m joking but I’m not, that’s what one of my friends was asked, and when she yelled at the officer this a**hole rejected her visa request! it’s even more upsetting considering the fact that’s yr governnment thing… and that ordinary americans have nothing to do with it. So hun, ever thought to blog on the issue lol?

  17. GG!! That sounds perfect! Let’s do it. ooooh, that would be so fabulous! teehee. Hugs and love galore to you!! πŸ˜€

    Gah!! that’s just gross, Sarge. Sorry that happened to you; I’m skeeved out now. Shudder

    Fanta! omg, no wonder you have an occasional anti-American (but still pro-Fuzzy, hehe) moment! Heck, I would, too. I’ve just blogged a whole reply comment to your and Jenia’s comment, but I wanted to say here that I’m sorry that happened to you, and I do wish that things could be different. Maybe they will be. Huggs to the most marvelous Muske-Fanta.

    Hey Jenia, wow! That question is absolutely abhorent and could not be asked in this country (well, legally, by a rep of our government), but I take your meaning here and think it’s silly that you girls can’t come over to have some fun and see some sights. As I just said to Fanta, I’ve blogged a whole reply comment, but I wanted to respond personally, as well. Many hugs to you, dear friend! πŸ˜€

  18. yes, actually, i do feel better.

    i want to add something about frozen food stuff. i used to work at a big mega store chain when i was in college. have you ever been behind someone in line and when their total is given, they don’t have enough money for everything and they leave some or all the stuff? what happens with those items? well, i’ll tell you. someone comes and collects them from the cashier aisles, whether they check regularly or the cashier calls somebody. it then goes back in the customer service area. someone from each department is supposed to check regularly in customer service to pick up returns and reshelve them. this happens with food items, too, as long as they’re not open.

    now, sure, i can’t speak for every grocery store everywhere, but i’m willing to bet that the store i worked at wasn’t the only one that worked that way. and for the most part, most grocery stores don’t pay much over minimum wage unless you’ve been there a while or you’re in a manager position. at least that’s been my experience.

  19. Hey again, Kerry, you mean they sit there and rot before going back on the shelves or in the fridges? Or you mean they are whisked away and reshelved pretty quickly? As an aside, I’ve seen people buy items that have been abandoned at the check out line. Guess that’s okay as long as they’ve not been opened, but I think that’s the last word in impulse shopping, no? lmao

  20. I know what you are saying and you go girl, people like that most certainly get on my nerves as well so well down for ticking her off and her for actually doing what you told her to do. No doubt I would have been told where to go if it was me!

  21. You know, Snuggles, I was so aggravated that it didn’t even dawn on me that she might refuse! If it had occured to me, I may not have said anything. Maybe that’s where confidence comes into play? Or at least a certainty that I was right and she was wrong! πŸ™‚

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