Is this what they mean by road rage?

Road rage.

I’ve never experienced it.

Until today.

Was I behind the wheel of a 1967 Mustang Fastback, frustrated at having to follow a slew of putt putters?

Sadly, no.

Was I driving a Ferrari Testarossa at breakneck speed?

I wish.

Instead, I was steering a standard, run of the mill, shopping cart.

Yes, folks, it ain’t easy being poor.

And it’s even worse to undergo road rage when your set of wheels is a powered on foot and can only be accessed after inserting fifty euro cents.

The way I see it, the only good thing about this transport mode is that everyone is driving the same model, same year, and the best mileage for your buck is irrelevant.

No pimped up rides, no double exhaust, and surely no tinted windows.

Nevertheless, there are rules to be observed when driving steering your shopping cart.

These are almost identical to the ones in real life driving:
-Don’t tailgate
-Don’t impede the flow of traffic
-Maintain adequate speed
-Anticipate the need to brake
-Only overtake if it’s safe for you and other drivers
-Take care when reversing

Simple enough, right?

Hell to the no.

For some people, driving a supermarket buggy is like expertly maneuvering a real car on the Autobahn.

And for others, it’s like each time is their first time.

I’m usually quite tolerant when it comes to the slow, fast, and even the I-don’t-know-where-the-hell-I’m-going drivers, but today was a low tolerance day; instigated by the mother of all migraines.

My intention was to zip in and zip out of the supermarket; fifteen minutes tops.

Hence, I was unprepared for the hordes of inexperienced, amygdala-guided chauffeurs who hit the supermarket lanes this morning.

In all fairness, I must say my mission started out well enough.

Feeling confident at the wheel of my “car,” I kept to the right and stayed on my lane.

Shoppers seemed to be moving at a steady pace; minding their own business.

I made a stop on aisle three for tin foil which unfortunately, was inconveniently perched on a high shelf.

Suddenly, out of nowhere, a tiny cart, the kid model to the grownup version, made a beeline to where I awkwardly stood on tiptoes.

Quickly trying to get out of the driver’s way, I sidestepped to the left and felt a sharp jarring pain as the tiny cart struck me in the back of the foot.

Stifling a tirade of profanity, I sharply turned around to find a four year old child manning the kiddy cart.

Her mother, nowhere to be found.

Heel throbbing and head pounding, I managed to hiss, “Where’s your mother?”

A second later, the tiny driver had disappeared.

Looking down, I noticed that while I wasn’t bleeding, I was sporting an angry red scratch.

Intent on gathering what was left of my list, I hobbled to lane four.

There, I encountered the slowest shopping cart driver I’ve ever met.

She stopped every two steps, leaned on her handle bar, and inhaled, as if gathering the strength to carry on.

Intent on overtaking her, my actions were thwarted by a fast approaching driver on the opposite lane.

I could feel impatience boiling to the surface and I tried to stifle it by praying.

I prayed the good Lord would grant me tranquility and serenity.

However, this time, my prayers seemed to go unanswered and frustration wrecked havoc on my nerves.

Five minutes later, I finally made it to the next lane.

Speeding up to load dairy products into my cart, I didn’t notice an inconsiderate driver who reversed into me, causing a four pack of Activia to fly through the air.

Miraculously, it didn’t burst, but the cart handle lodged into my ribs.

Without so much as a word of apology, the rude man put his cart on drive and drove off like a maniac.

At this point, road rage took over.

I took off after the shopper.

Weaving left and right, I gave chase.

I finally cornered him in aisle eight.

“Excuse me. You backed your shopping car into me back at the dairy section and I think you bruised one of my ribs.”

“I no speak English.”

Repressing the desire to flip him off and ask, “Do you speak middle finger?” I said, “You’re a very rude driver.”

Content I had created awareness to the unsettling situation, I limped to the frozen food section.

Sadly, I was unprepared for a driver who invaded the right lane and as a result, I barely missed being involved in a head on collision.

Convinced I had somehow strayed from the universe’s path of harmony, I made my way to the check out register before road rage once again reared its ugly head.

Yes, I’m convinced whoever said, “Driving is a dangerous business,” was definitely picturing a shopping cart.

When was the last time you engaged in supermarket road rage?

Today I’m linking up with Heidi’s Black and White Wednesday.

Black and White Wednesday

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66 thoughts on “Is this what they mean by road rage?

    1. I’m so glad to hear this since someday I do plan on moving to Italy. It’s a comfort to know that at least I won’t be battered and bruised! hee hee! :)

  1. You got me laughing here on this rainy day…I try and avoid busy times at the market, as the poor driving skills of so many shoppers, probably my own too, can be a bit maddening. It’s funny, in real like I am like ‘the queen of the backroads,’ i will do anything to avoid congestion, take any odd turn, and I just know my way around like that, apparently I’ve got a mad sense of direction, and i’m like that in the supermarket. If I see a congested aisle, I will literally go all the way around the store to avoid passing through a herd of “other drivers”. When my strategy fails, that’s when I start getting pissy. What I hate are people who see you are trying to get at something and they either ignore you are standing behind them or they just aren’t paying attention. My feeling is, you get to stand in front of products for a few minutes, but you should stand back a few feet if you are still deciding. And I also hate it when people reach in front of me or push me out of the way to get something, without as much as a “do you mind if I reach across you?” or an “excuse me.” Pushy people and people who aren’t paying any attention are both a little irritating in the store. Most of the time,I don’t notice this stuff, but there are those days…sorry about your injury though, “where was that mother?” ; ) .

    1. Patrice, I hear you, sister. The shoppers that dart in front of you, run over your feet, stand mouth agape for hours in front of certain items, as if waiting for whatever it is to talk back to them, are just infuriating! In this country, there is no “Excuse me,” or “Pardon me.” It’s more like, “Get out the way, bitch.” hee hee! I think the mother may have been hiding from the little terror and her ride from hell. bwhahaha! :)

  2. Funny stuff! I have had my tendons nearly stripped from my legs from those little tot carts. Those things should be outlawed! I know I shouldn’t laugh at your road rage misfortune, but it’s the great writing that makes me smile.

    1. Oh, Annnie, laugh, please do! It’s why I write this stuff! Seriously, you can pay me no bigger compliment! You had me giggling over the “nearly stripped tendons from those little tot cars.” Whose idea was it to create those little terrors on wheels? Argh! In any case, it’s the parents that should be getting rammed in the ankles! hee hee! :)

    1. Michael Ann, aren’t the shopping cart driving rules similar, if not identical to real driving? I’m so glad you agree! Every time I go into a supermarket, I think the aisles are like lanes. I really do. Gosh, I need to get a life. hee hee! :)

  3. I sympathize 100%. Crowded grocery stores always make me irritable. I do my best to go at off peak times and to carry a basket instead of pushing a cart. I have to make more trips that way, but they’re usually more pleasant.

    1. Shary, the Significant Other would agree with you one hundred percent. He always says it’s easier to carry the basket but it’s not always easy when you have to lug around gallons of milk and containers of juice. I use the handbasket for the little stuff. Too bad there aren’t many days of little stuff. I think I have to start going early in the morning or later in the afternoon. It would appear I pick the worst hours to shop! :)

  4. Oh my gooooodness, how you make me laugh. Thanks for always brightening my days, angel Bella! I do sOOo love the spirit you put into everything you do…even grocery store shopping!! HooorayYY!

    1. Brynne, you are a sugarbug! I’m tickled pink you found this post funny! I had fun writing it and chuckled remembering the play by play incidents! And isn’t life more fun when you inject spirit into the daily conundrum? I love how you support my crazy ways! :)

  5. You have made my night. Came home from work in horrible back spasms and had to go to bed. Finally, I pulled myself together a bit ago and started reading the blogs and looking at the photos. Yours brought me OUT of my funk and put a grin on my face. I hit traffic jams in our grim WallMart all the time…and Kroger is not much better. Too many people with the lanes too small. I just stick in the earplugs and start listening to my iPod…that helps my road rage. genie

    1. Genie, hello and welcome! I’m delighted that the blog post served to tickle your funny bone! I too have tried to use my iPod to combat supermarket road rage but find it doesn’t allow me to concentrate on the task at hand. I’m lousy at multitasking! Nevertheless, thanks for the recommendation. I might employ it the next time I go and see if 2012 has awarded me better skills! :)

  6. My poor Bella. You know some days it simply isnt safe to wander out your house. The universal harmonies are indeed out of alignment and everywhere you go, there is a crazy or two to be found. I’ve had those days and don’t wish to think about the cursing outs, eye rolling and sometimes manic comments that jump out my mouth and the idiotic behavior of others. Girl!

    Thank the goddess for PATIENCE and order. In that order lol….

    1. Oh Coco, I need to strive to be more like you. God knows I could use more patience and order, and not necessarily in that order. hee hee! You know, when things start to go out of whack, I just know the I’ve stepped off the path of harmony. I take a deep breath, close my eyes, and ask the Universe to put me back on it. It works most of the time! :)

  7. I love how you tell a story. Road rage in the supermarket is very real and very serious problem. Which is why I like to go early in the morning, when they’re are fewer carts around. Although, I went this past Monday, Jan 2nd, which was a national holiday. Even though I went early, I didn’t expect the crowd that was already there. It felt like I was surrounded by Christmas Eve last minute shoppers. I was forced to navigate my way around the carts and quietly fume at those who park their carts right in the middle of the aisle while they’re browsing the shelves, totally ignoring that they’re creating a traffic snarl. Sheesh!

    But the only thing missing from this post is a photo of my beloved Roxy! Is she MIA this week?

    Btw, I love how you can take such beautiful photos of something as innocuous as shopping carts! That’s awesome!

    1. Monica, your words gladden my heart, lady! And little Roxy is just delighted you are wondering where she is. I decided to give her a few days off after her winter photoshoot! hee hee! I have to say, I’m like you. I wonder why the heck people leave their carts in the middle of the aisle, like they own the place. So irritating, hermana! Do you like the shopping cart photo? I try to take photos to accompany as many posts as I can and I’m glad I managed to capture this one when there weren’t many people around. Thanks for your praise, lady! I’m so grateful! :)

    2. My favorite of the two is the black and white one. It makes the shopping carts look so lonely. The fact that it’s in black and white gives the feel of winter. Lonely in winter. Perfect. It’s like poetry!

  8. Getting hit with a shopping cart can cause quite a discomfort. To be caught on the heels by some reckless driver brings an automatic scowl to the face, making one feel evil instantly.

    I do believe it wasn’t your day for shopping AT ALL. And where was that child’s mother? Seriously, it’s too easy for anything to happen. Even when my kids were in middle school, I was watchful. They have a tendency to dash off and when it did happen, I’d go into a panic, searching frantically.

    Ever wonder what the universe is trying to tell you when these sorta things happen or is it like the luck of the draw?

    1. Totsy, I find it completely irresponsible how the citizens of this country leave their dogs and children to roam free like wild animals. When my children were young, the thought that someone would kidnap them was enough to keep them close to my side. You’re right–it wasn’t my day to shop. I believe that when things start to spiral in such a manner, the Universe is indeed trying to tell me, get the hell out of dodge! hee hee! Seriously though, I do believe that when things start to come unhinged, it’s time to say a prayer and ask that harmony be restored.:)

    1. Jodi, love, misery loves company and I’m just so glad you’re here to support me in my times of angst! Thank you! And I love that you can laught at anything I write. Forget if it’s about pain or not, laugh away! That in itself is the best compliment you can pay my writing! :)

  9. Ohhh, Bella,’
    Only you can make a grocery store trip interesting as hell.
    So Hilareous. I could visulize you ramming around w/ your cart. Haaaa
    I love those little old people who drive around in those little cars! have you seen them? But they
    are a little cranky!
    I find your writing and stories quite pleasurable. :) xx

    1. Kim, aw, I love that you like my writing! Thank you for making my day! In the beginning, I too found the old people in the little cars charming, that was until one of them nearly ran over my foot and another said a bad word when I was standing in his way. For the most part, they’re evil, lady! hee hee! Now the old people pushing the carts, those kill me. Every.Time. :)

  10. Only you, dear Bella, can turn a painfully unpleasant moment into a comedy! I’ve never experienced road rage in the grocery store like that, and I hope I never do. But I’ve seen such rudeness and carelessness. Hoping your heel and ribs are better now. Are they?

    1. Debra, you know me, trying to get through the drudgery of life on a laugh! hee hee! I’m so happy you approve! You too have made my day, sweet lady! The scratch on my heel has been soothed by Neosporin and my ribs, well, it was just a slight push. Thank goodness for all the “body chubbyness” that protected them! hee hee! :)

  11. Bella, your supermarket is like a bumper car ride! Ouch! I could feel your pain but I still chortled at your misadventures. Only you can make a boring trip to a supermarket fun…

    1. Jann, I love your comparision of my supermarket day to the bumper cars! Because that’s exactly what it felt like! I’m delighted you chortled about my tragedy. Delighted! Thank you for laughing along with me. You don’t know how much that means to me! :)

  12. Bella, grocery shopping makes me claustrophobic and rage-filled for all of the reasons you just outlined. HATE it. But, I LOVE your black and white photo of the carts.

    Also, I can absolutely picture you as cheer captain, but I just don’t believe you were ever a mean girl. No way, sister.

    1. Aw, Heidi, I love that you have such a nice opionion of me! Sadly, it’s true. I confess. But it was high school. And I got a big head from all the attention. If Dan the spammer had known me then, he would have had a field day! hee hee! I’m so happy you like the black and white photo of the carts! Thank you! With your skills, it means a lot to me to have your approval! :)

  13. Happens all the time Bella. I’m the type of person who apologizes to a shelf if I back into it, so presume I’m always wrong, but sometimes I KNOW it’s the other person who crashed into me. My motto is: Never go shopping when you’re hungry and never go when it’s busy!

    1. Elizabeth, I should be more like you. I really should. If I were, I woudn’t have landed myself in the little supermarket pickle! However, you’ll be happy to know I’m following your advice and abstaining from going during the busy times and most definitely, when I’m hungry! :)

  14. LOL!! :-) It’s amazing how going to the market can turn into an exercise in patience, and self-control, due to those people who don’t apply rules of the road to their shopping carts.

    Don’t get me started on the guy strolling down the main aisle between the check-out section, and the product, coughing up and out without covering his mouth! Aaaaaaahhhhh!!

    :-) xoxo

    1. OMG, Hot Coco, coughing up a storm without covering your mouth is just heinous! It makes you wonder when and why good manners left the building! hee hee! And you’re right, this supermarket trip should be assigned by therapists to all those needing to harness patience and self control…or not. I almost lost my mind! bwhahaha! Hugs and kisses for you, lady! :)

  15. If you ever come to Serbia, you’ll find out that people here tend to take their misbehaving brats to supermarket, put them in the cart in spite of the fact that the kids are big enough to walk and way too big for the carts, and those brats get bored quickly and start causing all sort of trouble.

    I haven’t seen a supermarket road rage I wasn’t able to solve with a tiny “Excuse me”, but the disgusting little brats, pardon me, little darlings, can be quite annoying.

    1. Ivana, I hear you! Big kids in carts? Perhaps this is a way for parents to try to control their children better, but I can understand why it would make the little rugrats disruptive. Oh my goodness! I must keep this in mind if I ever go to your part of the woods! Thank you, lady! :)

    1. Savy, looks like I have to be on survival mode if ever I come to India! hee hee! I think I would adapt quite easily. I have a knack about self preservation! :)

  16. Oh man! I had an almost idential experience when I was grocery shopping last Friday. I always try to be a good driver when in the grocery store and last week was no exception. I’ve finally (after nearly a year and a half) have a good “routine” for walking around the store to get the things I need. I was feeling so pleased with myself for being so efficient. I was thinking to myself “I’m going to be as efficient as my mom soon!” (honestly, she’s the most efficient grocery shopper ever.)

    However, I did not take into account that I was going at 2:00 pm when the 70+ crowd shops. Electric wheelchair/carts were parked side by side in the aisles. Regular shopping carts were horozontal across the baking aisle when I was just trying to get marshmellows! A man who looked to be about 90 crashed into me when I was crouching down to get some orange juice.

    Needless to say, I will not be going grocery shopping that early in the day ever again.

    1. bwhahaha! Oh Rachel! I just laughed out loud at your comment of the ninety year old man crashing into you as you retrieved your OJ! I’m sorry! But the visual was hilarious! hee hee! Thank you for enhancing this post with your own personal version of the acts! I love, love, it! :)

    1. Nina, your words give pep to my step! I read your comment to the Significant Other and he said, “But has she met you in person?” hee hee! He’s trying to be funny, of course. Emphasis on the “trying.” I’m thrilled you like reading my posts, lady! Thank you for your support! :)

  17. oh my word, Bella! I don’t know if I’d like shopping at your grocer’s! The people at mine are quite nice, and there isn’t much bustling or bumping into anyone. Also, I go there when it’s the middle of the day or close to midnight because not a lot of people go there… hee hee hee.

    1. Laura, that’s it. I’m packing my stuff and moving to your neck of the woods! I too want to live among courteous beings who don’t bustle and bump! I do! I do! hee hee! You lucky girl! :)

  18. Bella, I’m sorry for your pain and frustration at the hand of the shopping cart drivers, but you wouldn’t mind if I laughed out loud, would you? Your description is too funny! Whose idea was it to let toddlers drive shopping buggies anyway?? And your (silenced) comment, ‘Do you speak middle finger?’, was so appropriate! I think the ones I get most angry at are the sitting carts like those at Wal-Mart. Those drivers know one speed — FAST — and whether it’s in Forward or Reverse, they’re bound to take out a few other shoppers with them!

    1. bwhahaha! Debbie, I think your comment is ten times funnier than my post! “They’re bound to take out a few other shoppers with them.” hee hee! The visual just makes me giggle! I’m happy, happy that this post made you laugh! Like I’ve told the other sweet ladies, there’s nothing more flattering than your readers to find what you write is funny! Thank you for your kind words, lady! :) Oh, and really, whose idea was it to make those tiny shopping carts for the little terrors?? :)

  19. I seem to have a road rage melt down every time I go to the market and I especially hate the kiddie carts. Why not just turn a bunch of 5 yr olds loose in their with tricycles? It would have the same effect. Enjoyed reading your blog!

    1. Shea, hello and welcome! I say you and me start up a petition to remove all kiddy carts from supermarkets all over the world! Methinks this will make for a safer and more enjoyable shopping experience. As for the tiny tots, they can bring a toy from hom and sit pretty in the grownup cart, which as demonstrated by my post, is already dangerous! hee hee! I’m thrilled you liked the blog! I’d love to have you drop by again! :)

  20. Sorry Bella, I’m pretty sure that was my mom leaning on her cart, gathering the strength to carry on … or maybe it was me simply trying to remember what is next on the “list” that I dutifully completed then left on the kitchen counter. It’s a well-known fact that the slowest shoppers pick the busiest days of the week and times of the day to do their groceries, makes their exchanges and complain about the freshness of the peaches. You’re just going to have to perfect your James Bond shopping cart driving style ;-)
    I actually miss the days when my kids were small enough to fit in those shopping carts made to look like race cars or garbage trucks (have you seen them?). I was embarrased to use them but could fit 2 boys in the front and the baby carrier in the cart part. They were BIG and we barrelled through that grocery store – people made way for US !
    Thanks for the laugh!

    1. Astra, I remember those shopping carts! My sister and I used to put our four kids when they were little and received the same reaction! Other customers would clear a path for us before we ran over their feet! hee hee! Thank YOU for making me laugh with the comment about your mom or you possibly being the one leaning on the cart! bwhahaha! I am desperately trying to perfect my James Bond driving finesse. It may take some time but I think I shall master it! :)

  21. Too funny! Actually I had a moment today. With only a handful of items, but large ones so that the buggy looked full – banker’s boxes for tax receipts and file holders, and things a person gets at Staples – I let the woman who approached me with a few things in her arms go in front. There she proceeded to lay out different piles, each to be rung up separately, and paid by different checks that she phsyically wrote instead of using debit cards. Have mercy – I felt duped.

    1. Lady, my nana used to say that no good deed goes unpunished and I’m afraid that’s what happened to you today! hee hee! I’m so happy to have tickled your funny bone with this post! Your comment served to open my eyes to think twice about letting another customer “with a few items” in front of me the next time I shop! hee hee! :)

  22. Ha!! How about “I’ll bet you understand PAIN.” Whack! There goes your cart into his shin. I’m very impressed with your politeness, especially post-migraine. You are a Lady, my friend. I’d at least have tried to fart in his direction, then smile broadly and roll over his toe.

    1. bwhahaha! Lori, I’m certain that if you lived in my part of the woods, we’d be best friends! I can see the both of us cutting the cheese and quickly rolling the cart wheels over his hammer toe! Thank goodness for the fresh air upon exiting the building which helped take the edge off my migraine slightly. However, had we partnered up in the aforementioned scheme, something tells me my migraine would have disappared immediately! :)

  23. Lessons learned since I am have road race issues is never shop during the day when the Seniors are shopping, never i the mornings or early afternoons when those mini drivers are out with their kitty trollies, and never ever on a Monday. This way I am not tempted to run some one over just for the sport of it. As ever you made me smile, even if you had the mother of all migraines, were run over and side-swiped, you still managed to find the humor. I think we should ask the grocery chains to provide Hum Vee shopping trollies, what do you think?

    1. Brenda, you’re back! I’m all for Hum Vee trolleys! Where do we sign up? hee hee! I like your shopping rules. I should definitely take note and apply them to future shopping expeditions. They seem simple enough and something tells me that in following them, I will undergo less bodily harm! :)

  24. Sorry about the hurt ankle, but a great story. I like how you pinned the fact that everyone drives the same model. Funny stuff! LOL I wish you a better shopping expericence next time.

    1. JCV, thank you for your thoughtful words! I am grateful, lady and I’m thrilled you liked the post! Isn’t it great how there is no distinction when driving “cars” at the supermarket? Everyone gets to maneuver the same beat up vehicles; no showing off for the little people. I love it! :)

  25. Oh my gosh! Just last night while at the grocery store I had an issue with this incredibly rude woman who would just throw her cart in the middle of the isle at a diagonal and walk away from it – she would get pissed if anyone moved her cart too! So rude. I can’t stand it when people think they can just go and do that to everyone else.

    1. Kirstin Marie, and isn’t it ironic how the rude ones always become indignant when you even touch their cart even though it’s blocking everyone’s way? Incredible! I’ve taken to giving those offensive carts a big shove. I’m done with the “wait till they become aware there’s a conga line behind me.” hee hee! :)

  26. I’d have tripped the kid ‘accidentally’ and ricocheted the rib bruiser. My goodness but you’re a saint. Maybe reading your blog will rub off on me. ;)

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