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On shopping trolleys and human nature

By johnboy - 29 December 2011 49

shopping trolley

2011 saw some considerable idealism from the Greens as they pursued their dream of getting Canberra’s lazy bogans to live like Germans, in particular on the subject of shopping trolleys.

As it happens shopping trolleys have been occupying my mind recently during my weekly outings to the Aldi at Jamison (free open air parking, cheap dog food and beer, something tricky to try and BBQ on the Weber, and what will the special be this week?).

It started with general curiosity as to why the serried ranks of Aldi trolleys were just so vast:

aldi trolleys

And then a few weeks ago, having dutifully deposited my dollar coin into a trolley I was cleaned up by a guy rushing through the entrance from the Coles next door.

Which was when I looked around and realised that every single other shopper in Aldi was pushing a Coles trolley.

Not some, not a majority.

Every single shopper had decided that rather than engage in coin return in exchange for the use of an excellent trolley they’d grab one from Coles with wonky wheels and dump it in the car park.

So not exactly a rousing success for shopping trolley reform, but a big win for laziness, mendacity, and cultural inertia.

Rather than learning to carry a coin or token and wheel the trolley back a whole 30 odd metres over smooth tarmac the shoppers of Jamison (with the exception of one lonely noble blogger) just nick one from Coles and dump it.

And then yesterday I got the trolley pictured above.

For the sake of a dollar (possibly two) someone has decided it’s easier to vandalise the trolley than wheel it back to the supermarket rank.

There’s a person out there, voting, driving on our roads, with a first instinct to hack up a trolley for a dollar rather than return the trolley.

What’s the point of all this?

Betting on people’s good nature is for suckers in this town.

Education is never going to bring change absent enforcement.

We need to keep that in mind as the ACT Government makes ever more rules without paying for inspection, regulation, and enforcement.

What’s Your opinion?


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49 Responses to
On shopping trolleys and human nature
1
puggy 11:13 am
29 Dec 11
#

Abandoned trolleys are a bugbear of mine. It may be that I notice them a lot more know, but I reckon I see more now that the law has come in. I don’t understand what possesses people (mostly students) to wheel a trolley 2km from Gungahlin shops, over all sorts of terrain, for what I usually see is less than a full bag of groceries. I don’t understand how I can report a trolley in exactly the same location numerous times and yet still continue to see a trolley left in the same spot. Has anyone heard of anyone being fined for taking a trolley far from a supermarket, as I thought the law allows for? How is that enforceable?

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2
jsm2090 11:24 am
29 Dec 11
#

Trolley habits nicely summarise our society these days; we’re fat, lazy, and selfish. Wheel locks would prevent this easily. So many of our tax dollars these days seems to get caught up in preventing people from doing things that a basic level of common sense should warm us against.

http://www.ferret.com.au/c/Lamson-Engineering/Trolley-Guard-System-n678883

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3
matt31221 11:40 am
29 Dec 11
#

That is pretty piss poor form. Lazy bastards. Coles should hire a security guard to prevent that occurring.

I take the trolley back to get my dollar it is kind of satisfying.

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4
Kan 11:56 am
29 Dec 11
#

Why can’t Coles do an Aldi and have coin trolleys? Both supermarkets (Aldi and Woolies) at Kippax use the coin system. When Woolies followed Aldi’s example and introduced the coin trolleys, it stopped the dumping virtually overnight.

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5
Rawhide Kid Part3 11:58 am
29 Dec 11
#

I think Coles will also be doing the coin trollies soon. Should be interesting.

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6
taninaus 12:19 pm
29 Dec 11
#

Most shopping centres overcome this laziness by installing trolley return bays with a connection to get your coin back – win-win as the shopper doesn’t have to walk back into the centre (which is impossible if you have anyone, especially munchkins in the car with you) and the shop gets all their trolleys lined up ready to be returned by those folks earning a minimum wage buck taking them back into the centre.

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7
johnboy 12:22 pm
29 Dec 11
#

taninaus said :

Most shopping centres overcome this laziness by installing trolley return bays with a connection to get your coin back – win-win as the shopper doesn’t have to walk back into the centre (which is impossible if you have anyone, especially munchkins in the car with you) and the shop gets all their trolleys lined up ready to be returned by those folks earning a minimum wage buck taking them back into the centre.

Jammo has those! but still too much trouble when you can just steal a trolley form Coles!

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8
MERC600 12:26 pm
29 Dec 11
#

On the subject of shops. If you forget to take a bag with you, Coles and Woolies sell their bags for 15 cents a pop. South Australia has had a no bag policy for some time now; so do any rioters know what they pay for a Woolies/Coles bag in SA ?. 15 cents here seems a little high. I thought I can remember some Polly quoting a bag might cost 5 cents at the most.

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9
astrojax 12:55 pm
29 Dec 11
#

10
2604 1:28 pm
29 Dec 11
#

To paraphrase Harlan Ellison, the two most abundant substances in the universe are hydrogen and naked self-interest.

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11
BenMac 1:56 pm
29 Dec 11
#

MERC600 said :

On the subject of shops. If you forget to take a bag with you, Coles and Woolies sell their bags for 15 cents a pop. South Australia has had a no bag policy for some time now; so do any rioters know what they pay for a Woolies/Coles bag in SA ?. 15 cents here seems a little high. I thought I can remember some Polly quoting a bag might cost 5 cents at the most.

From SA’s website it says,

The decision on whether to charge or how much to charge is up to the retailer.

I suprised people are still using coins when you can get those token from Aldi to use.

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12
matt31221 2:00 pm
29 Dec 11
#

taninaus said :

Most shopping centres overcome this laziness by installing trolley return bays with a connection to get your coin back – win-win as the shopper doesn’t have to walk back into the centre (which is impossible if you have anyone, especially munchkins in the car with you) and the shop gets all their trolleys lined up ready to be returned by those folks earning a minimum wage buck taking them back into the centre.

Why is it impossible if you have munchkins? Just need to discipline them better so they can handle it. Lazy parenting as well as lazy trolley etiquette.

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13
BicycleCanberra 2:35 pm
29 Dec 11
#

Many people start their shop @ Coles then go into Aldi to get the basics and look at the specials. I use the token which is on my keyring, simple to use without having to search around for a dollar coin or two.

This problem is the corner stone of a car centric culture, acres of car parks yet you couldn’t walk a trolley back to a return bay parking isle. If everyone shopped regularly(on bike) like the dutch do we wouldn’t have this problem of the wandering trolley.

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14
2much2do 3:48 pm
29 Dec 11
#

matt31221 said :

taninaus said :

Most shopping centres overcome this laziness by installing trolley return bays with a connection to get your coin back – win-win as the shopper doesn’t have to walk back into the centre (which is impossible if you have anyone, especially munchkins in the car with you) and the shop gets all their trolleys lined up ready to be returned by those folks earning a minimum wage buck taking them back into the centre.

Why is it impossible if you have munchkins? Just need to discipline them better so they can handle it. Lazy parenting as well as lazy trolley etiquette.

Yep, smart move genius, let’s lock the kids in the car and hope they don’t suffocate or better still, let’s leave the babies in the pram alone in the carpark.

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15
screaming banshee 3:54 pm
29 Dec 11
#

Woolies in Katherine had a great system when I was there back in ’94. The trolleys were housed inside the store past the turnstile and you would pay an extra dollar as you went through the register so no need to carry a coin.

After unloading the trolley you could either return the trolley to the collection point back in the store to get a shiny dollar, or have the rotton odoured toothless person with the metho bottle in their back pocket do it for you sans your refund.

Simple, and let me tell you there where never trolleys left out!

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