We've all been there.... You pull into Hannaford, Target, Walmart, or whatever, and after spending a little more time than you wanted looking for a parking space, you go to pull into one, and after you've fully committed and are almost in, you come right up on a shopping cart some jerk was too lazy to take back to the cart corral.

Of course, there's exceptions to that rule. Someone with kids in the car, or pregnant, or elderly, etc. can be exempted from a return. But able-bodied persons who just leave a cart of of sheer laziness, should be drawn and quartered by four high horse-powered trucks.

This all started because I read an article online that pretty much says the opposite of what I see in our thread from Facebook. The article in Scientific American says that folks only tend to return their carts if they feel pressure to do so. Either they see other people doing it, or there is someone in the car near them, so they feel like they have to.

But when I put this question up on Facebook, it would seem the Bangor area is full of people who see left-behind shopping carts as a very serious issue. We got almost 150 comments in about an hour from folks who are hardcore cart returners. Do I believe every one of them? Of course not.

But it since we Mainers can be easily aggravated by anything to do with our vehicles, I imagine that most folks hate coming upon abandoned carts so much, that they're willing to take the extra step to feel like they're "not that guy". I feel like I fall in that category. I always return that thing.

Folks that chose not to, at least according to my informal survey, listed extremely practical reasons. Kids, age, health, mobility issues, weather, etc. Ok, maybe the weather choice isn't really fair. Why should the cart jockey have to grab extra carts because you don't wanna deal with a little rain on your head?

At any rate, I was super surprised to see so many great, if not impassioned responses. Definitely scope out the comments in the original post. Some folks take this whole cart thing preeeettty seriously. And as they should. Otherwise, someone has to go out into the elements, and take care of your mess. And that ain't cool.

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