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Shopping Carthritis

Updated on March 7, 2011

Some things are just too hard.

Life is a struggle, that we know.

It is often faulty equipment.

We falter and can hardly go.


So much work to do.

So many dates to keep.

So many foods to eat.

So many hours to sleep.

We’re eroded,

As life continues its rub.

By the end of the day,

We’re just a nub.

Blame the equipment!

We might put folks on various moons.

We might build bridges,

Out of pontoons.

We can harness horse power,

Wind power, and solar power,

Enjoy a hot shower or meteor shower,

And throw a baseball at a 100 miles an hour.

So many break-downs!

It does give one pause.

Mechanical failures,

Must be the cause.

How else can we explain,

Such a high percent,

Of accepted abandonment.

It evokes deep bewilderment.

In parking lots you’ll see,

Over-turned wreckage and more..

It could happen at Wally World,

Or any health-food store.

Fitness gurus,

To flabby butts,

Washboard abdominals,

And a lot of beer guts.

Muscles and celluloids,

People with hemorrhoids,

Over-active thyroids.

Tri-athloids on steroids.

I wonder what the pioneers would say,

If they saw such carnage and gore?

And- so many “did-not-finishers”,

At any given store.

Some people walk for miles,

For a little food in a sack.

But too many modern shoppers,

Can’t return a cart back to the rack.

It affects the young,

Middle-aged, and the old,

The weak, the strong,

The timid and bold.

Is the last bag you load,

Into your automobile,

The last conscious emotion,

That you can feel?

Advanced cultures reflect,

Its people, strong and smart.

What does this say for folks,

Who can’t return their shopping cart?

The aged are weak and dying.

Many are broken and slowed with arthritis.

But modern culture has an epidemic,

Of “Shopping Carthritis”.

~Micky Dee~

Burlington, North Carolina
Burlington, North Carolina

ALDI stores were created by Karl Albrecht and Theo Albrecht. Their stores go back to 1946. Their mother started a small store in a suburb of Essen, Germany in1913. Their father was a miner and later a baker.

The two brothers split the company in 1960 over a dispute whether they should sell cigarettes at the till or not. You could hardly tell they were apart though.

In Europe, Australia, the United States, and many parts of Canada, a coin, or a reusable coin-sized token is needed to unlock a shopping cart from others.

When the cart is returned, the coin is refunded, so is no extra cost to the customer. The customer must simply return the cart to retrieve the coin. I inserted a quarter and all wheels rolled in harmony.

ALDI has a “no frills” design with all stores. You won’t see lavish and even decorative aisles.

Many products are on pallets in cardboard boxes, but shaped for easily handling by the customers.

Red or white?

Clean aisles and plenty of food.

Occasionally, ALDI offers special close-outs on electronics or other merchandise.

ALDI has a good selection of produce and fruit.

Cashiers pass products through a two-sided barcode scanner. Some products have 4 or 5 separate yet identical barcodes covering several sides of the packaging to speed this procedure.

Aldi has a 1 second delay, meaning the same barcode can't be scanned twice in under 1 second.This is to prevent double scanning.

Employees alternate between checking customers out and store maintenance. All employees focus on the register. But when customer traffic is low, only one employee will check people out while the rest perform other duties required to run the store such as stocking, cleaning.

In many countries, ALDI does not provide free plastic shopping bags. This includes most of Europe, the US, and Australia. The customer can purchase various types of plastic/reusable bags at the checkout. ALDI's customers are encouraged to bring their own bags.

Credit cards are not accepted in England, Ireland, or the U.S.

Debit cards are accepted in the United States, the United Kingdom, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Portugal, Spain, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Ireland, Australia, Slovenia and Hungary.

Checkout operators sit down in swivel chairs. I am so delighted that these cashiers have seats. Standing in one spot, for long, is very hard on the legs.

It is reported that the brothers retired as CEOs in 1993 and gave most of their wealth to foundations.

ALDI has some great ideas.

Happy shopping!

~Micky Dee~


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    • Micky Dee profile imageAUTHOR

      Micky Dee 

      7 years ago

      Thank you Bijja. God bless you.

    • Bijja profile image


      7 years ago from India


      I enjoyed your poem.

      And the photos are great.

    • N.E. Wright profile image

      N.E. Wright 

      7 years ago from Bronx, NY

      I will, I will. LOL.

      Take Care,


    • Micky Dee profile imageAUTHOR

      Micky Dee 

      7 years ago

      Hi N.E. Wright! Thank you for stopping by. I'm glad you enjoyed this. It can't be a perfect world. We'll just take the slack up when we can. God bless you NE!

    • N.E. Wright profile image

      N.E. Wright 

      7 years ago from Bronx, NY

      Hi Micky,

      Ouch, Micky .... LOL.

      Okay, so I have to put the carts back? I get it. LOL. So sad, because we kids use to do that for my mother, and I just do not even think about it now.

      I really loved your poem. Seriously. I loved the way you went into the narration about the Supermarket. I actually never heard this store before this Hub. I did love the way it looked. Nice photos. I love clean stores. I really do. Not that people like dirty ones. LOL.

      Thank you so much for sharing.

      Take Care,


    • Micky Dee profile imageAUTHOR

      Micky Dee 

      7 years ago

      Oh yeah! I worked in a grocery store. That's long standing on hard floors. Carried out many bags too.

      Thanks for sharing memory lane with me 50. I can see the cars you're talking about. God bless you bud!

    • 50 Caliber profile image

      50 Caliber 

      7 years ago from Arizona

      Mic' great and fun hub, as Will says we don't have Aldis here.

      Way back when and I'm sure Will, will recall, there was a forerunner of bulk grocery in Phoenix, I'm thinking 1955 or so, it was called "Food City" and once every month and half or so we trekked in the '59 Chevy pick up truck that took the place of the '53 Rambler station wagon and went there and came out with 6 baskets of groceries, one just about full of milk that we kept in the freezer back in the paper carton days, the cream went to the top and it was remixed into it as we split the milk 50/50 with powdered milk. I could drink a gallon a day if they would have let me. I remember splitting a can of tomato soup 3 ways between the kids and a grilled cheese sandwich each. For basically being on the poor end of life, I didn't know it as all my friends and families were living just like we did and I consider my childhood a fairly descent experience, we all have things that we wish was better or different, and I've read stories from writers here that hurt my heart, I thank God I didn't have those experiences. I have some bad memories, but compared to some stories I've read, I was on easy street. I wasn't exposed to those kind of stories as a child, my father did not allow "gossip" under his roof. If I saw something, like a friends drunken father hit his wife, I could tell my father what I saw and he would try and explain to me about the way drinking effected some people and not to talk about what I saw unless it was my friend and he brought it up to me and then I could ask him if his parents would let him come to Sunday school with me. I had one particular friend who just about lived with us full time because of the drunken brawls that went on at his home. When I was 11 his father wrecked their car, killing him, his 3 sisters and mother, but he survived to go to prison. In the desert in the area I lived they cut through small hills to keep the road level and if a car left the road at night down into he brush and the dust settled before another passed it was days before the wrecks were discovered. This was one of those times. I have no description for the feeling it left me with.

      The first time I saw quarter shopping carts was actually at an airport baggage cart return, I don't remember the airport off hand just the man asking could he return mine so he could get the money and I let him.

      Like Bobbi said, those days of full service are long gone. The last memory was on a visit to where my brother lives in Tennessee, when you went in they had a path lined with stacks of sale items, cases of canned good etc. then a coffee pot to get a cup on the house and snap on ashtrays so you could drink coffee and smoke while you shopped and it felt like a community get together people stopped and talked while they shopped, with each other. I accompanied my father to the funeral of his older brother who had died of a heart attack. While I was in the store people I never met were friendly and stopped me to talk and all seemed to know uncle Charlie, the town jeweler ad watch and ring maker. It was like going back in time 20 years. It was paper or paper, they bagged them and took them to your car, a weeks worth of groceries or a case of soda, It didn't make any difference. There were still two full serve gas stations with repair bays. Something our youth will never experience. I suppose if we brought our jobs home and helped one another some things might return.

      Thanks for a mind stirring article, Peace, 50

    • BobbiRant profile image


      7 years ago from New York

      I love Aldis and Save A Lot too, both good stores to shop in because I'm all for saving money. But I do recall when we had bag people and young people could get a job helping us to the car with our groceries. Those days are long gone. Great hub.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I think if I had to pay to use a cart to buy my food, I would go without! : ) Great hub, Micky!

    • akirchner profile image

      Audrey Kirchner 

      7 years ago from Washington

      Cute as always, Micky but very real point there! I used to do fund raisers for my kids in the grocery stores, coupon things. I would just tand there looking and looking at the brands of everything and say to myself - how many of these do we NEED? Good lord - do we have to have 15 of the same products with a different label to be 'happy'?

      Will have to try and find one of those stores too - pretty slick!

    • arb profile image


      7 years ago from oregon

      You my friend, will change the world single handedly. Great sense of humor embellishing the little peeves of life. Great job and voted so. be well Mickey!

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      7 years ago from Houston, Texas

      We don't have an Aldi in our area but our warehouse stores like Costco and Sams look similar with the exception of the carts. There one is free to use all the empty boxes to repack purchases and transport them to one's vehicle. They do not furnish paper or plastic bags. Like Aldi's they also sell electronics and other items besides food. The one difference is that they are membership stores. One pays an annual fee to be able to shop there. No frills, many things come in bulk and often the prices are less expensive (but not always) and the quality is good.

      Nice hub, Micky! Useful and up! And...BTW...I return carts to the racks.

    • Eiddwen profile image


      7 years ago from Wales

      Hi Micky,

      Thank you for another masterpiece with great photos to complement perfectly.

      I was fascinated by the history also.

      Last year we had our first fundraising event in my daughter Erin's memory and we held a children's disco.

      I went round the Supermarkets here to kindly ask for donation snacks, pop etc. Aldis were the most generous and I do try to pop in as often as I can since.

      A great hub Micky my dear friend, and you have the gift of transforming a simple subject into a masterpiece !!!

      Take care


    • profile image

      Micky Dee 

      7 years ago

      No problems jandee dear.

      God bless everybody for your thoughtful comments!

    • jandee profile image


      7 years ago from Liverpool.U.K

      This 'edit' button doesn't work !!!

      Mademoiselle is how I should have spelt it. sorry,j

    • jandee profile image


      7 years ago from Liverpool.U.K

      Micky ,I spend plenty of time in france The Aldis and Lidl are usually run by a couple or so of women. They are so efficient and hard-working it isn't true ! Woe betide anywho who is 'dozy' in packing their purchases ! It takes one back to far-off days working on a conveyer belt in a factory. Mind-blowing to us in u.k who were practically brought up watching the 'glamour of hollywood'. A madamoiselle in the french Aldi where I shop is the absolute double of a young Bette Davies but no matter how hard I try I cannot imagine the lovely Marilyn working there,jandee

    • profile image

      Doug Turner Jr. 

      7 years ago

      Go Aldi. The leftover carts in the parking lot that start rolling in the wind -- that's when things get really dangerous.

    • creativeone59 profile image

      benny Faye Douglass 

      7 years ago from Gold Canyon, Arizona

      Thank you Micky, for another great hub. Thank you for sharing. Godspeed. creativeone59

    • toknowinfo profile image


      7 years ago

      Your commentary on human nature is always interesting. I always return the shopping cart, and I usually avoid the stores who make me put in money to make sure I return the cart. I view myself as adult enough to put the cart where it belongs without having to give a coin deposit and get it back. But enough about me. I loved your hub, rated up and funny.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      7 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      I would like to print this poem and post it on the bulletin board of the market I frequent. Getting out of the parking like is like playing bumper cars with all of the unreturned carts. Great hub!

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 

      7 years ago from South Africa

      We have large shops similar to ALDI. I never return the shopping cart - there is always somebody near who wants to do it in exchange for a minimum fee. Thanks for this informative hub, Micky. It was nice to compare our shops with your ALDI'S.

    • profile image

      Fay Paxton 

      7 years ago

      This was a nice lighthearted hub that made me giggle. I've never been in an Aldi store. Looks nice, clean and well-stocked. I must keep my eyes peeled for one and make sure I have a quarter.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 

      7 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      I can't really blame them for the quarter shopping cart rental. If people won't bring the cart back to the corral then they lose their 25 cents. Seems like a bargain to me.

      Love the looks of the store

      Now I'll have to explore.

    • Hummingbird5356 profile image


      7 years ago

      I first started shopping at Aldi when I lived in Germany and when I have the chance I go, though the nearest one is a quite a distance from where I live now. I like the selection of German food which I got used to there.

      It is quite true when people have to put a coin in the shopping cart they will take it back and not abandon it. It seems to be the only way to make sure that they do. Even if it is a penny not many will leave it for someone else.

      A funny hub.

    • vietnamvet68 profile image


      7 years ago from New York State

      we shop at Aldis quite often there is one about two miles from our home. The ones in NY don't sell beer and wine though. Happy shopping Micky

      God Bless

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Terrific write as usual, Micky! Thank you! We don't have Aldi in Canada but we do have many grocery stores that are doing similar things with the shopping carts and the bags. Even our pharmacies charge for plastic bags now and personally, I like it! We always have a stash of bags in the car and when we forget, you wouldn't believe how much I can stash in my purse hehehehehe.

    • Mentalist acer profile image

      Mentalist acer 

      7 years ago from A Voice in your Mind!

      It's a scientific fact,a cart in impractical stasis in frowned in many places.;)

    • WillStarr profile image


      7 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Sadly, we don't have ALDI stores in Arizona.

    • sligobay profile image


      7 years ago from east of the equator

      Micky Dee on a shopping spree

      got a cart for free wheeled it home

      found a shop that's tops AL Dee

      sounds like a family shop to me.

      LOL sligobay

      great and funny write MD. Sorry about the full disclosure of your vested interest.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      7 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Aldi looks like a nice clean store. I like the idea of coin carts, when people leave them in the lot, they roll and hit cars. Love your poetry.


    • jandee profile image


      7 years ago from Liverpool.U.K

      Hey Micky,

      grab that bottle of 'Cotes du Rhone' make sure it's o8,


    • rpalulis profile image


      7 years ago from NY

      I love the coin idea on the shopping carts, and awesome poem!

    • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

      Dim Flaxenwick 

      7 years ago from Great Britain

      Loved the poem. l´ve heard a rumour that there is an Aldi store not too far from my toytown with no shops. Must find out more. Love you , man , as always.

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 

      7 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      I don't think I've seen one of those ALDI stores in Toronto. If it's new in the States, it'll be here in like ten, twenty years. We're Canadian and frightened of new things for the most part.

      Loved the poem though! Awesome! I couldn't have wrote that in a thousand years ... Cheers!

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      7 years ago from south Florida

      I'm gonna find me an Aldi store,

      Where I can buy what I need and more.

      Tomorrow I will start,

      And I WILL return the cart.

      Thanks for the neat poem, Micky.

    • No_Clue profile image


      7 years ago

      Aldi fan here...great hub, Mr. Micky Dee! Folks who don't return their carts bug me too, or at least take them where they are supposed to be collected...voted up!

    • Hmrjmr1 profile image


      7 years ago from Georgia, USA

      We don't have Aldi's around here, and I miss them. A great place to shop anywhere in the world. Great Job Mic.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 

      7 years ago from Ohio, USA

      Very interesting. We have several ALDI stores in my neighborhood but I've never set foot in one. I will now!

    • Darlene Sabella profile image

      Darlene Sabella 

      7 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

      Hi Micky I am happy to be back so I get to read this awesome excellent friend, you are so gifted, even in deep sorrows I truely love your work, it comes from your heart. You are a hero and you need to see that when you look in the mirror, you are a shinning star. rate up love & peace darski


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