The Last Telephone

Have you have you bought a landline phone lately? It just isn’t done. Phones come in sets — two phones, three phones, four phones, or even five phones. People thought they had to have a phone for every room. Now, they have a cell phone and seldom use a regular telephone at all.

I went to the local Staples to buy a phone, which gave me pause to wonder. Like big box stores, will telephones soon become obsolete? People are no longer shopping in big stores.

A telephone rests in a box on a low shelf where it has gradually been pushed to the back of the shelf and is barely visible at all. There were telephone sets on display but very few to actually purchase and take home. In fact, this phone could be the only one left in the world. It is a nice phone, but no one wants it.

If a customer finds a phone they like in the display, the store will order that model online and have it delivered to the customer. How ridiculous. Most likely people have checked prices and have a pretty good idea of what they want already. If anyone wants to order online, they can do it themselves.

The only reason people go to electronic stores now is to see the actual merchandise. They then pull out their smart phone to see where they can get one cheaper. No one seems to see or want the lonely phone that is on the shelf. In spite of its many features, it isn’t smart enough.

Maybe they don’t realize that phones now can be connected to a cell phone? With new technology, desk phones can connect to cordless headsets as well as to mobile phones. People can’t see the point and don’t want a land phone.  After all, a cell phone is a TELEPHONE, as well as a computer and many other things.

People want to play Angry Birds and send text messages.

The makers of telephones know that home phones are becoming obsolete and are trying to make them more like cell phones. But the phone is still not actually mobile. It is cordless but will only work when it is close to the base that is transmitting the signal.

Even office phones are no longer just phones. They can do tricks. Phone calls come in on a computer and pop up on the screen with the caller ID displayed. If no one answers, it takes the message and emails it to the user. Even so, people often have both a business desk phone and a business cell phone.

But wait! A customer is looking at the display phone on the shelf. The phone has waited so long for a home. It has waited and waited for someone to get tired of an old phone that went dead, can’t be charged, cuts them off, and is not dependable. Of course, the person could buy new batteries, but it is easier to buy a new phone.

“I’m here! I’m here!” thinks the phone. But it cannot say what is in its circuits. It can only say the number of an incoming call and it has to be plugged in for that. The telephone fears it is destined to be obsolete.

Before long humans will be saying, “Remember when people had phones they could only use in the house?” They will laugh like they do now at the mention of its ancestors, phones with long curly tails, antenna, or dials instead of buttons. And even buttons are becoming obsolete. Humans speak the number or name and the smart phone knows who to call.

But someone discovered the phone and picked it up! They are carrying it to the register. It is going to have a home at last. This is an event to be remembered — something to go down in the history of technology.

Someone has purchased the last telephone.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Technology, Shopping, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Wrong Day

It has finally happened – dementia. I knew I was getting old but I didn’t expect to lose my mind so soon.

I had a dental appointment the other day, my 6 months checkup. I had it on my calendar. I always write things down like that so I don’t forget.

I also had received a reminder card from the dentist’s office. I put it on the refrigerator so I would be sure to see it and not forget. They say people tend to forget dental appointments more than any other kind. It is psychological. We forget what we don’t want to remember.

The appointment was on Monday. Trouble was, my daughter had a doctor appointment on Monday and I had promised to lend her my car. How would I get to my dentist appointment?

“Honey, can you take off early Monday and take me to the dentist?” I cooed to my man. “I suppose I could change it… but I won’t be able to get another appointment in the late afternoon.”

“I have something else to do Monday afternoon. Maybe I can drop you off, do my errand, and come back for you.”

“That should work.” I hate all the rearranging and juggling to keep medical appointments. It is okay for them to make you wait an hour after you get there, but you must be on time. And just as sure as you are a few minutes late, they will be on schedule for the first time in 20 years and pass you by.

When I arrived at the dentist, I signed in on time and was ready to go.

“Excuse me,” said the hygienist, “I don’t have you down for today.”

I was dumbfounded. I knew it was today.

“Well, when is my appointment?” I asked.

“In two weeks.”

I knew she was wrong but what could I do?

“Well, okay, I guess I will have to come back.” I called Honey. “Can you come back and get me? It’s the wrong day.” He was at the bank and not happy about hurrying back.

“I’ll be there in a few minutes.”

I have to take medication one hour before an appointment. Not valium or anything, although that’s not a bad idea. It is an antibiotic because I have knee implants and if infection gets in your blood… oh, never mind. You don’t want to know. Four pills of penicillin all swallowed at the same time. Yuck!

“Oh, I forgot you have to be medicated. Well, let me see; maybe I can work you in quickly.”

I called Honey again. “Never mind, they are going to take me.”

“I just love coming here so much I couldn’t wait until it was time.” I kidded with the hygienist.

She took x-rays, did her thing and then the doctor came to check me out. Naturally, he managed to find a cavity.  “You will need to come back and let me take care of that. Maybe you can just come on the appointment you already have.”

Everyone is a humorist.

I made a new appointment and called Honey for the third time.

When I got home, I checked the card on the refrigerator, sure I was right and they were wrong. No, they were right and it is there in writing on my refrigerator and on the old appointment card. I was so certain that I had not bothered to check.

At least when you arrive two weeks early, you can’t be accused of forgetting because you did not want to go.

Next appointment is Tuesday, at 2:30. I hope I don’t forget.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Health, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

White Noise

How can a color be noisy? Well, believe me it can. We experienced this innovation at the office where I worked several years ago.

Thanks to a new open office plan at our office, we had something new to gripe about besides each other. You see, experts discovered that with an open office plan, you could not only see each other, you could also hear each other.

Experts came up with a way to overcome this little distraction. It was called “white noise.” We were not exactly sure where it was coming from. For all we knew space aliens may have brought it from another planet. It certainly sounded like something from out of this world.

All day long we were subjected to a whistling sound in the background that blured out any other noise. No longer could we hear our neighbor chattering on the phone, clicking the keyboard, or complaining about too much work.

Funny, most of us had never even heard of white noise and suddenly we had it. It came with modernization, like manna from heaven. We spent our time around the water cooler speculating on what the white noise sounded like. “It sounds like an air blower at high speed,” said one person. “I think it is like being on an airplane,” sald another. “It sounds like what you hear in a seashell when you listen for the sound of the ocean,” said someone else. Of course, the bottom line was that it sounded like… well… white noise.

It seems people complain more if the sound is loud, so it started out low and day by day the volume increased until it reached the highest level. The theory was that if the increase in volume is gradual enough, no one will notice. It is similar to the old frog story. If you put a frog in water and gradually increase the temperature, you can bring it to boiling without killing the frog. I don’t think that is true, but I did know that we were boiling in white noise.

When people talked to me, I could see their lips moving, but I ccould not hear what they were saying. “Huh?” It was like working in a ticket office where you are separated from the rest of the world by an invisible pane of glass, or in a gas station in a bad neighborhood with bullet-proof glass to keep the bad guys out.

White noise is not supposed to be harmful in any way. It is supposed to reduce stress and help workers avoid distractions and be more productive. We suspected that it might be a sinister plot to control our brains and were considering getting tin-foil hats to keep the white noise waves from controlling us.

Noise is not considered noise pollution until it reaches a certain level where noise is more than merely annoying and actually harmful to your health, like the noise from airplane engines, jack hammers, fireworks, or your kids playing rock music. The idea is that it should be loud enough to “mask” other sounds without being loud enough to create a noise distraction of its own.

When you search for information on the internet, most of the results are about how to make white noise, not how to deal with it. Some people use it in the nursery to help fussy babies sleep and it actually works. Now I know why I was suddenly so sleepy. We were supposed to be more productive, but instead we were yawning and finding it difficult to stay awake in our glass cocoons with the soothing sound surrounding us.

As I understand it, an open office plan is intended to improve communication. White noise is intended to mask the excessive noise from our improved communication. But, everyone just kicked it up a notch to be heard over the white noise. It seemed self-defeating to me, but obviously I was out of touch with modernization.

As far as I’m concerned, though, the best color of noise is still the old-fashioned sound of silence.

Copyright 2013 Sheila Moss
Updated 2022

Posted in Humor, Technology, Work Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Love It or List It

During the past week or two, I’ve spent a lot of time in front of the tube. It doesn’t require any physical exertion and not much mental exertion either. I’ve reach into the depth of channels with high numbers and off the regular networks and made some interesting discoveries.

One of the shows with multiple episodes was called “Love It or List It.” A real estate agent tries to find a new dream home within a budget and persuade a couple to move while a decorator completely remodels their old home to entice them to stay.

After watching a couple dozen episodes, I began to notice all the things wrong with my home that needed changing in order for me to love it. I am totally out of style in my 30 year old house. Oh, I’ve done a few upgrades; for example, stainless steel appliances only because my old ones died one by one and had to be replaced.

Still, I found out by watching TV that I really need other things that were on the list of every single couple. For instance, did you know that open concept kitchens are now in? Open concept means, the kitchen, eating area and living room are combined. I am so outdated that there is probably no hope. But the more shows I saw, the more I wanted change, so I decided to change a few little things.

Obviously, the wall between the living room and kitchen must go. I made quite a mess with the chainsaw and forgot about not taking out supporting walls, but the living room and kitchen are now open concept, great for entertaining.

Did you know that you must have granite countertops in your kitchen now or, even better, quartz? My butcher block that used to be so stylish is now out. It was hard getting the counter tops off, even with a crowbar, but I managed.

Of course, I really need a work island in the middle of the kitchen. Everyone who is anyone has an island. But where will I put it? I will have to get rid of the table to make room. I know, I will add a sunroom and put the table out there. As soon as the contractor arrives, I will get started.

As long as I am adding granite countertops, I might as well fix up the bathrooms too. Sharing a bathroom is in, but sharing a lavatory is out. Double sinks are the current trend, his and hers. It will look great with a couple of those fancy bowls and a soaker tub. We must have a soaker tub. Did I mention shower jets and a glass enclosure? Those too.

While I’m waiting for the plumber, I think I will do something about the man cave in my living room. That oversized entertainment center is a relic. What is in now is a flat screen over the fireplace. I’ll just put it and the TV on Craigslist and see if I can get rid of them. We will need to get a new TV pretty quickly, though, so I don’t miss any episodes of “Love It or List It.”

That should about take care of the problem except for French doors to my new sunroom. Sliding doors are out, French doors are in. I don’t have a sliding door, but I can knock out a window or two. No problem.

That’s about all I can think of for now. I didn’t get to the attic, and that is unused space that could be utilized to expand the living space, according to the HGTV home designer. Maybe we could raise the ceiling and put in a skylight, very chic look.

In case you are wondering, NO, I did not actually do any of this except in my imagination. I guess I will continue to live in an old-fashioned house with a kitchen wall. At least no one can see the dirty dishes in the sink.

And if I win the lottery, I’m ready.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Home, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Mystery Pill

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“Is this yours,” asked Honey, dropping a white caplet in my hand. I looked at it and wasn’t sure. “It was on the bathroom floor,” he said. It didn’t look like one of my usual meds. It could be a pill left over from a long ago illness, like a forgotten cat toy lost under the sofa and found months later.

As soon as most of us get a certain age, we have a few pills that we have to take on a regular basis. Did I say a few? I keep mine in a pill dispenser with days of the week marked on the top so I don’t forget what I’ve taken and what I’ve not.

Otherwise, I have to open each bottle and by the time I do that, it is time to take my evening pills. The trouble with putting them all together in an easy-to-use dispenser is that not all of them are taken the same way or at the same time.

I have a tiny white pill that has to be taken 20 minutes before eating food. Someone told me, “Put it on the nightstand and as soon as your feet hit the floor, take it.” I tried it. Still drowzy, I dropped the bottle and pills went everywhere. The cat had a lot of fun that day. But those pills are much smaller than the mystery pill.

My stash of pills is for various ailments I have had at one time or another. My important pills are taken in the morning. That way if I forget, I have another opportunity in the evening to say, “Oh, my, gosh, I forgot to take my medicine.”

The pretty pink pill is my allergy pill. I don’t think it does a darn bit of good as I’m just as allergic to pollen and dust as I ever was. It isn’t even worthy of FDA regulation anymore. They made it over-the-counter a few years ago. But if I needed it when it was prescription, I must need it now. The mystery pill couldn’t possibly be an allergy pill.

The tiny caplet is a hormone pill. I don’t know why I’m still taking hormones. I’m still just as darn old as I would be without hormones. The doctor says, “It’s the lowest dosage they make.” I don’t need it enough to take a normal dose, but I’m afraid to stop or my skin might dry up and turn into crepe paper overnight. It is different from the pill Honey found.

That big green one is my pill for depression. Who wouldn’t be depressed taking so many pills? Every once in a while I decide I’m not depressed enough to need a pill and quit taking it. “You should not go on and off depressants when you feel like it,” said the doctor. “It is best to keep taking it as it will keep you from getting depressed.” It must be working as I’m not depressed. It is green, so no chance the white pill is for depression.

Then there is the yellow and white capsule for arthritis. It has to be taken after food. If I forget it, my body reminds me, so it is one I’m really sure I need. Again, a yellow and white capsule is not a white pill.

Some of my pills are relegated to an evening dose. These are the multi-vitamin, vitamin D, and calcium — more over-the-counter stuff — not taken because I’m sick but because they keep me healthy. If that is true, I shouldn’t need all those other pills, should I?

So, I have no earthly idea what the big white caplet is. Wouldn’t it be helpful if they put the name of the pill on it instead of a number? I suppose I could swallow and find out — but I think I will just throw it away.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Health, Humor | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Going Green

The main event in my life this week was signing up for a new recycling service. Yes, you heard me right – recycling — which shows how dull my life is if trash excites me. What can I say?

My current trash service collects everything. You put it in a plastic bag and they take it away to a landfill. As long as it is in a plastic bag, they will take it.

Since I’ve been cleaning my attic, though, I have far too much trash for the regular collectors. Most of it is stuff that is too large to fit into a trash bag. So, we have been hauling it to a central collection center that recycles. Before I discovered them, I never knew what to do with large household items that became useless.

Problem is few places take things like e-trash. Electronic trash consists of things like computers, TV’s, and cell phones. Some of it has components that can be reused. Some of it contains hazardous materials like lead and mercury. It must be separated and recycled accordingly.

I was online looking for a place that recycles computers when I stumbled across the All in One Recycling service. I didn’t even know such a service existed, at least not in my community. I could not believe what I was reading. I could recycle paper, cardboard, plastic, metal cans, and glass, and they would come and get it curbside. I didn’t have to divide it and haul it to the convenience center.

There was a charge for the service, but it still appealed to me. Most people want to recycle given a convenient opportunity. People are becoming more aware of the importance of saving resources and recycling and reusing materials whenever possible.

It is easy to recycle aluminum cans. I just keep a bag in the garage and throw my empties into it. But the idea of saving junk mail, cereal boxes, milk jugs, plastic bottles, tin cans, and glass bottles in separate containers and hauling it off every week just seemed overwhelming. I have too many other things to do to spend half my life sorting trash.

Being able to combine all the recyclables would greatly simplify the process. I could do my small bit for the environment and feel better about all the trash we seem to generate. So, when I found the online form, I signed up, excited to be trying something new. I committed for one year as that should be a good test of whether or not I’m able to stay faithful.

The service will supply a large trash container and I will supply the contents. I immediately began saving cans and cardboard, impatiently waiting for my plastic recycling bin to be delivered. Finally, I came home one day and it was sitting on the curb.

“Where will we keep it?” asked Honey, always the practical one.

I wanted to keep it in the garage where it would be handy, but I don’t have room, so I decided to keep it outside with the other trash cans. I hope my regular trash people do not think it is regular trash and haul it away.

I wondered how they separate the different kinds of trash as I’m sure they have to do this to recycle it. I looked it up and found out about the large machines that blow the lighter paper and cardboard to the top and let the glass and metal go to the bottom where strong magnets pick out the metal. It sounds complicated; however, it is certainly better than trying to separate it myself.

And so, I’ve gone green. It feels great to be doing what I knew I should have been doing all along. And did I mention that I did find a place that collects computers? We are making a trip there this weekend with a carload of dead electronics.

As I said, it takes so little to excite me.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Home, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Police Scanner Blues

Hum, I thought, as I checked out free apps on iTunes. I was looking at one called “Police Scanner.” That sounds interesting. So, I touched the download button and soon it was on my iPhone. I tried to tune in the local cops to see what was going on, but things seemed pretty calm on the local scene, just a lot of static.

But wait, what about these other channels: Chicago, LAPD, or Detroit? I tried Chicago and got action quickly. Police dispatchers talk in numbers, code for the type of incident going on. However, between the numbers they also talk in regular language. “10-67 A woman said she was going to burn down the building,” said the scanner, “and now there is smoke coming from it. Fire department will take this one.”

“Code 3: Caller reports an intoxicated driver is crashing into cars parked on the street.” Code 3 is police talk for use your lights and siren, this one is an emergency.

I listed for a while to the wrecks, robberies, and various other crimes in progress. It was sort of like an episode of “Cops” except it was for real. I’m not a big crime show fan, so I soon got enough and decided to turn it off. “Where’s the ‘off’ button?” There didn’t seem to be one. Well, not to worry, I will return to the home screen and that will cut it off. Besides, I have other things to do.

I tossed my phone in my purse and left for the grocery store. But, as I rounded the corner of the produce aisle, my purse began to talk. “Screech, 211 Robbery in progress!” Where? Then I realized it was the scanner. I took off for the milk cooler before the people who had dived under counters could see who was giving out false alarms.

“10-15 We have the suspect in custody,” said my purse. “What did you say?” asked a man with a large jug of 2% milk. “Who me” I looked around as if looking for the offender, then smiled, trying to show as many teeth as possible while backing away, forgetting all about the orange juice I wanted.

No telling what it would say next. The restroom. I would go to the restroom and be sure it was turned off for real this time. “10-84 We are going to block the road at the intersection,” said my purse as I ran down the aisle with my buggy. Dear God, the store manager will think I am trying to sabotage the supermarket.

I ducked into the restroom and yanked the phone from my purse, trying to figure out how to turn the darn thing off. If you can turn it on, surely you can turn it off. “Shut up,” I said. A woman washing her hands looked at me strangely. “Oh, not you, my purse.” The woman left quickly.

The phone had no intention of shutting up, though. “Screech, 11-85 A red car is blocking a man’s driveway. He wants the car towed. Can you check it out?” No, I can’t check it out. I was frantically pushing buttons on the phone.

“10-72 A caller said there are two police cars in front of his house. He wants them moved or he is going to start shooting.” No, no, not a gun battle in the supermarket restroom. I finally managed to turn the volume down before the bullets started flying.

I left without checking out my groceries, glad to escape before being arrested for inciting panic in a public place. Wonder what code that is? I could listen in and see if they are coming for me.

I later figured out that the only way to turn the scanner off was to turn the phone off. “10-3 You are going to stay turned off from now on,” I mumbled holding down the “off” button on the phone.

“10-4” said the phone as it faded away.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Humor, Technology | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

The Cold Weather Report

Hello, and welcome to tonight’s HD News Channel on-the-spot weather report.  The weather has been unusually cold — as if you haven’t noticed the single digit temperatures. Sure makes me wish I could find my scarf and gloves. I’m freezing out here in this wind.

This unusual cold is caused by what we in the weather business call a polar vortex. If you donWe’t know what that means, don’t worry about it. Actually, we don’t either, but we have to have something to blame besides Old Man Winter.

We were getting pretty excited here at the weather station when it looked as if there was a possibility of snow. We had cameras down at Public Works taking pictures of the piles of salt and the salt trucks all lined up in a row like Army tanks.  Unfortunately, we will not be showing those pictures tonight since it failed to snow. Too bad since we even had the scoop on how it can get too cold for the salt to work.

Although we didn’t get to create our little snow panic, we at least have some cold weather to report about. Busted water mains are shooting water out on the roadways. People are hitting the ice and spinning out of control. Watch out! Here comes one now. Whew, close call. Here come the police and tow trucks with lights flashing. There is plenty to report on with a polar vortex even if the snow didn’t materialize.

We threw a cup of boiling water into the air earlier and filmed it so you could see it instantly freeze and fall as snow. By the way, don’t try this at home as it might come down as boiling water and scald your face. Don’t ask us how we know.

We are heading over to the local district’s school bus lot now to show you all the buses with dead batteries. Good thing they decided to cancel school. Lots of people had the same problem with cars, so we are going to call AAA and find out how many calls they are receiving. Well, the line is busy, but believe me, folks, you don’t want to know, especially if you are one of the customers waiting in the cold for a tow truck to arrive sometime this week.

A lot of people are missing work today. The freezing rain froze car doors shut, a perfect excuse to “work from home.”  I was a little late myself, but I swear, my car doors really were frozen shut. I tried hot water, hair dryer, heating pad, everything until I remembered I had a remote start feature and could turn on the heater in the car.

Our featured story tonight is one that is really attracting attention. Over at City Park we found a couple of ducks frozen in the ice on the pond. Park employees had to launch a kayak and chip them out with a hammer. It drew quite a crowd. Animal rescue has pronounced the ducks okay; however, they will take them into custody for observation. Animal experts tell us they are geese, not ducks. Should have known it would be a silly goose that didn’t have enough sense to get out of the water.

One more thing before we sign out for the evening. Remember how we told you to run a little trickle of water to keep your pipes from freezing? Well, forget that advice. Seems so many people are doing it that the city water department is running out of water pressure and wants people to conserve water. 

And that is the HD News on-the-spot weather report for tonight. Be careful out there and stay off the black ice. See you tomorrow morning with an exclusive report about vehicles in the ditch alongside of the Interstate, including the van belonging to our weather team. 

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

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Sleepy Head

I can’t believe I slept until 11 AM this morning. What has come over me? I used to be up at 5 o’clock sharp and on the Interstate headed for town by 6 o’clock. At 11 o’clock, I would be eating lunch. I thought my watch was wrong when I looked at the time. But if it was wrong, the clock had the same problem.

How much sleep do we really need? Am I simply catching up on the sleep I have missed? I’ve heard that there is no such thing as catching up on sleep. Once you miss sleep, it is gone and you can’t get it back. This may be true, but after a period of sleep deprivation, we must be more tired than we would normally be and hence inclined to catch a few more Z’s when we have the chance.

he problem is I’ve not had any sleep deprivation lately. I’ve been getting up at 8:00 or 8:30 naturally, without an alarm clock to force me into consciousness. I suspect what is happening is that I am becoming lazy, lying in bed sleeping when I could be doing other things.

Once in la-la land, it is difficult to enter the land of consciousness again. The bed is so warm and snug, it lulls you into staying there whether there are other things to do or not. I did more physical work than usual yesterday. Maybe that contributed to my unusual tiredness this morning. It is easy to lie to myself when I want to convince myself that I am justified in sleeping all day.

If I have to go somewhere, I wake up and get ready. For example, when I had to go to the doctor the other day, I was up early and ready in plenty of time. But, when you have no particular reason to get up early, what does it matter if you don’t?

I am afraid that I will develop the habit of staying up late at night, and being sleepy the next day. It really is easy to stay in bed late. Should I force myself to go to bed at a certain time and wake up at a certain time whether I need to or not?

Is laziness really sleeping late or not doing what you know you should be doing? I try to accomplish something every day, some small project in addition to the regular chores of daily life. That way I do not feel that the day is wasted even if I do sleep late.

I’m afraid that I will fall into bad habits. Why get up when you don’t have to? Why worry about how you look when no one will see you? Why clean the house or work in the yard? Of course, even if no one else knows, I do and that should be incentive enough, shouldn’t it?

There is no reason to panic just because I had a bad day and slept late one time. The world did not end, the sky did not fall, and the roof did not cave in. In fact, I am probably the only one that noticed. So, thinking of it in that way, who cares?

I may just sleep late again in the morning. After so many years of getting up early, maybe I’m entitled to become a bit lazy. Maybe that is one of the luxuries of retirement?

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

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Road Rage at Wal-Mart

I’ve seen old people ride around Wal-Mart in those electric carts with big baskets. It sort of looked like fun. I never had used one, not even after my knee surgery, but my back has been really bothering me lately, especially when I walk — very especially when I walk all over a big box store like a Wal-Mart Supercenter.

The other day, I relented, decided to admit I am an old fogey and need to drive one of the elder four-wheelers.  So, I got on one, but couldn’t figure out how to make it go. I pushed the yellow lever and nothing happened.

“You have to unplug it,” said one of the employees who happened to be on break. I hadn’t thought of that. She showed me the plug in back and how to fix the cord and I was ready to rumble. Off I went through the automatic doors and down the aisle.

The fun part wore off pretty quickly as I dodged people and people dodged me, giving me angry looks for getting in their way. Getting in their way? They were in my way! What is the matter with people? “Do you think I’m on this stupid cart because I want to be?”

Cutting in, cutting out, narrowly missing thoughtless people and flying shopping buggies. Sometimes I had to just stop and set there until some rude person finished browsing and decided to clear the path. “Get out of the way,” I screamed. Well, not really, but that is what I felt like doing.

I thought I could shop faster with a motorized cart, but actually I found it much slower. The cart had two speeds, go and stop. I jerked along, whizzing and screeching. What a way to shop. Any hope of shopping while sitting down was dashed as I found I could not reach what I wanted without standing up, or I could not get to what I wanted because someone had a shopping buggy parked in front of it.

“I wish this darn thing had a horn on it. I would blast them to kingdom come.”

People are incredibly rude to those with lesser abilities, I discovered. They do not want to be bothered with being nice, so they cut in front of you to avoid slowing down, or they ignore you to keep from being inconvenienced. They avoid eye contact and you become an invisible person.

I resisted the urge to wham into people and knock them out of my way. It was hard. I did finally learn to make the cart move slower so I could creep up on people who were in the way, sort of like bullying. Eventually, they seemed to get the point and move on.

The carts are pretty maneuverable. I guess they have to be to make the sharp turns and get down the narrow aisles. They will not pop wheelies, unfortunately (or fortunately) but you can get them going pretty fast when heading across the back of the store toward the garden center.

If you get into a spot that you can’t get out of, you can back up. They make a loud beeping sound when in reverse, like a garbage truck. However, it is hard enough to keep from running over people going frontwards, so I didn’t do much driving in reverse.

Driving a four-wheel cart is not nearly as convenient as I thought it would be. I’m still angry at the stupid lady in the shampoo aisle who would not let me through. She has no idea how close she was to death, or how lucky she is that I discovered reverse.

If you see me on a cart at Wal-Mart, stay out of my way if you value your life. Keeping control of my road rage may reach its limit any day now.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Humor, Shopping | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments