Question: What can you see in the following picture?

Supermarket Trolley

Is this...

Answer: A supermarket trolley.

Question: Where is this supermarket trolley? Is it:

  1. At the supermarket?
  2. Near the supermarket?
  3. Dumped by kids near their housing estate?
  4. Being held hostage for ransom by a trolley kidnapper?
  5. None of the above?
Supermarket Trolley

...a trolley I see before me?

Answer: none of the above. This supermarket trolley lives in our new apartment block. It’s available so residents with shopping or other items, can easily transport them from their car to the lift, and into their home. Very handy, though it’s a bugger when you need it, and the last user hasn’t returned it yet. What do you do then? Well, you go over to the other block in our development and borrow their trolley. Easy!

Have you spotted the cultural clash in the preceding narrative? Something that may be a little off from – dare I say it – mainstream Western Civilizational Values?

Let me give you a hint. What’s the full name of the item? It’s a supermarket trolley. Where did it come from? The supermarket? To whom does it belong? The supermarket. How did it end up in our block? It was acquired without the owner’s permission, consent or approval. Translation: it was stolen. I didn’t steal it, and I don’t know who did the dirty deed. The supermarket does not exist to give us trollies for our home convenience. I don’t think that’s on their corporate mission statement…

So, what is the right thing to do? I cannot fit it into the boot (trunk!) of my car and return it. It’s too far to walk. Probably, I will end up doing nothing and being party (in a small way) to a crime each time I use it.

(I cannot believe this is an unusual situation – though there was no such naked thievery in the very British run block we stayed in, in Netanya.)

I know in the scheme of things it’s not material, but it bothers me. Should it?