Short Story Sunday: A Seaside Holiday
It’s Week Five of my Short Story Adventure, and I’m on the fourth tale in *The
Persephone Book of Short Stories*. *Holiday Group*, by the wonderful *EM
3 days ago
Gerard Manley Hopkins
Some Like it Hot
Gone With The Wind
Wednesday, 17 August 2011
Wonky wheels are Trolley Bad...
A trip to the supermarket has left me wondering who designed shopping trolleys, because I'd like to give him (or her) a piece of my mind. They must surely be one of the most infuriating objects ever invented. Is it just me, or does anyone else find they always pick a trolley with a wonky wheel? Take it back and pick another, and the replacement is just as bad - or even worse.
As you push the wretched thing around the supermarket, it seems to develop a life of its own. Head for the left, and it veers off to the right. Try turning right and, unsurprisingly perhaps, it moves to the left. If you keep going straight ahead, in the hope that nothing can possibly wrong, the wheel jams completely and your trolley refuses to budge – a definite handicap when you’re faced with a week’s shopping and you have to be elsewhere else in an hour’s time. In a variation on a theme today's trolley would only progress if it was shoved sideways, so there I was, desperately trying to steer the trolley while avoiding other shoppers and displays of goods.
And, while we’re on the subject, why don’t stores provide more smaller trolleys? They must be popular, because you can never find one – and they are essential if you are five foot nothing, because then the large trolleys are impossible to steer (with or without a wonky wheel). With their handles at chest height, these monsters make your arms ache. They are too heavy, and so deep that to fish things off the bottom you have to stand on tip toe and practically fall inside as you stretch to reach your shopping.
Whatever the size of the trolley, and however difficult it is to push around the store, when you come to unload your purchases it will take off on its own with ease. Dare to release your grip on the handle for so much as a nanosecond while you unlock the boot and the contraption races across the car park with the speed of an Olympic athlete - and that's before you start trying to decant the contents into your vehicle.
And even worse than the idiots who designed the trolleys are the idiots who can’t be bothered to wheel them back to the storage areas and leave them scattered across the asphalt, creating a hazardous slalom course for other drivers.