Cart Wars ep. V The Retire Strike Back

Start with a bad joke

I was at the market with my wife the other day and she was picking out some bakery mixes. She sent me to the other end of the aisle to get olive oil. Of course, there was regular, virgin, and extra virgin. I sniggered to myself and called out, “Honey, do you care if our olive oil has had sex or not?” I thought it was funny. The guy stocking canola oil about six feet away was laughing hysterically. Unfortunately, my wife doesn’t always understand my humor, especially when there are two elderly ladies and a nurse standing almost directly behind me. The one woman was so shocked she almost fell of her cane. I turned and apologized, but the second elderly woman giggled and said, “Don’t worry sir, Maude will be all right. I’m sure she’s heard worse. You know, you’d be perfect for her granddaughter Cynthia.”  The nurse gave me a look that could kill, and my wife sent me to the car, and I didn’t get a candy bar at the checkout.

If you would like to hear me whine in person Press Play If not read on

Let me ask the ladies something

Before I go on, may I ask you ladies something? What’s the age you go into city hall and have your name changed? Don’t try to lie to me, I know it’s happening. You all go through most of your life with normal names like Sue, or Sharon, or Karen, and then at some point somebody dictates that you’re an old lady and your name becomes Gertrude, or Millicent or Bertha. I figure it might even happen twice in your life. I mean when I was a kid every other girl was named Heather. That would mean all those Heathers, would be pushing fifty about now. Do you think Heather is a grandmother name? Heck no! Grandma is named Gertrude. Heather is a teenager with long hair and a short skirt. In fact, if you scan all the ladies of a certain age, you find they’re named Mary or Jean, with a couple of Christine’s thrown in for good measure. Not a Heather in sight. Hey, I don’t make the rules, I just observe what’s happening and brilliantly report it.

Guys don’t do that. You can find a Bob in preschool as well as the retirement home. I don’t want you to think I’m judging all of you. I’m just wondering why. Is it something run by the fashion or cosmetic industry? Maybe it’s like the runway show in Milan or Paris, “As you can see, this year necklines are getting lower and we’re seeing a bit more length in the skirts. Lastly the big news from New York is that Heidi will be the new name for the season. Well girls Yodel-A-E-oooooooo.” Okay, enough of that.

Let’s talk about going to the market

What I was actually getting at in the first paragraph is that I have had a lot of time off work recently and have been able to do the shopping with my wife, during the day, and boy is it an experience. You may not know this, but during the day the super-market becomes like the Daytona Speedway except instead of stock cars there’s electric carts with baskets on the front. I swear some of the folks driving those things are natural born killers. I don’t know the exact reason, but when people get behind the controls of those things, it’s like they feel a new power and they charge down the aisles with abandon.

Actually, it might be good to have a professional announcer keep track of those things over the PA system. It might sound something like this; “Good morning, folks and welcome to Food Mart. It’s going to be a beautiful day for electric carts today. Well, they’re charged and ready. The doors are open… And they’re off. First let’s watch Josh Hedren. He’s in the canned vegetable aisle and boy is he moving along. Ohh know there’s a man with a dislocated shoulder who just stood up by the carrots. Will Josh see him? Would you look at that curve! Josh swung it around in time and made a rude hand gesture all at once. Let’s watch that again in instant replay. Yep, that’s really going to gain him some serious style points. But we have to leave that because up by the checkouts there’s some real action. Martha Kowalski is coming across the lanes and Lynnette Fitsimmons is headed down aisle four at a high rate of speed. Those two ladies can’t see each other, so let’s watch to see what happens. Ohh bad news! We’ve had our first accident of the day. And the yellow flag comes out.”

Things keep happening even when I want to help

I think ESPN should look into this as a new broadcast. I know I’d watch it. But you see this isn’t the oddest thing about shopping during the day. Right after the exhilaration of being involved in the races, you are suddenly thrust into the daily Soap Opera. “On today’s episode of Market Miseries, we see poor Mrs. O’Brian next to the meat counter. Seated in the electric cart, she is unable to reach the small piece of beef that will sustain her meager life. But hope springs eternal because nearby is goodly Mr. Ohh!. He will surely help. Let’s listen in…”

Ohh yes, I’ll help but it’s not so much helping as entering a great guessing game. I point to something. She tells me the one she one she wants is to the left. I move left, but she actually meant right. I move right and point to another one, no she wants the smaller one. I grab the smaller one and I get a rebuttal saying not that small. I get the perfect one, hand it to her, but she frowns and hands it back, apologizing saying she wanted pork chops, ending with, “By the way, can I show you a picture of my granddaughter Brenda?”

Even when I want to be friendly something goes wrong

It gets worse, when I shop in the evening, everyone’s trying to get home. Consequently, you can say “Hi” and smile at folks and they’ll smile back. We all have to keep moving. During the day folks have time. If you say, “How are you?” to those folks be prepared, they’ll tell you!! “Ohh I’m not well at all. I’ve got this pain right in the center of my chest that just won’t go away. I asked my second cousin April about it. That’s Julie’s daughter. She’s a registered nurse. You’d like April, she’s really cute, except for that unfortunate third eye in the middle of her forehead. Are you married? I could fix you up with April right away. You don’t mind if she always turns to her left side, do you? She doesn’t have a right ear. But other than that, she’s quite beautiful, except for the limp.” You have to be really careful. You might be caught in the produce section so long, some guy might come along and toss you in a bin because you’re no longer fresh.

Then after a while it got serious. When I was home for a few weeks my wife decided I could shop by myself so she could continue her job working at home. I want my momma, unless she wants to introduce me to some single girl.

Thank you for laughing and Please read a little longer

Thank you all for laughing with me, but I need to be serious. Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency is a genetic disease which rots the liver and lungs. There is no cure. The only help for people is to have a weekly infusion of proteins to stop the spread. For the next few months I will be taking all my proceeds and donating them to the Alpha-1 Foundation who are searching for a cure to this horrible malady. You can give here or for more information go to Thanks for supporting world laughter, and finding a cure. Laugh On



12 thoughts on “Cart Wars ep. V The Retire Strike Back

  1. I’m surprised the nurse gave you a sour look. A lot of the nurses Mrs. Herb worked with over the years had the kind of sense of humor that would not only laugh but would make a reply that would turn your ears pink.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I love the moment in the grocery store when the lines are long and they open a new register. Suddenly all the old Berthas can run at the speed of lightning just to cut infront of everyone else.


Leave a Reply to Mr. Ohh's Sideways View Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s