A Great Brooklyn Mystery Solved

So I was halfway through my plate of Bucatini all’Amatriciana at Scottadito* in Park Slope when Cara, glancing out the window at the folks coming and going from the Park Slope Food Co-op next door, said something that reordered my world.

“That’s kind of a lame job,” she said, “walking people to their houses just so you can bring the shopping cart back to the store.”

I placed my fork on the table and tried not to choke. On my own laughter. At myself.

I’m sure my face turned red. Cara said, “What?”

I needed a moment.

“What?” she asked again.

“Woooooooooo, I’m a dumb-ass,” I said.


So I explained. I’ve been living in Brooklyn for the better part of 12 years now and spent quite a bit of time in Park Slope. For the past year and a half, we’ve lived just a few blocks from the Park Slope Food Co-op and I’ve walked and run past the following scene: granola-yuppie-organo-hipster walking home with a shopping cart full of flax seed and hormone-free cabbages accompanied by an orange-vested co-op employee or volunteer or member or whatever the hell they are.

And until last Friday night, I could never figure out what the hell the employee was doing! True story.

I’d call it a blonde moment, but it would be an insult to blondes.

It bugged the shit out of me every single time. Why? Why two people? What was that volunteer doing? What did I think exactly was going on?

Numerous things.

At first, I thought it was a service for older folks. But then I noticed the employee rarely if ever was pushing the full cart of groceries. Old lady had to push it herself. I thought it was one of the weird, ridiculous rules they had: NO ONE SHALL WALK ALONE. I thought maybe they sent an employee to accompany you all the way home to make sure that you weren’t scalping free-range kale on the street or re-selling your quinoa to a guy who used to work for the Mossad.

I have a fertile imagination, I guess. Especially when it’s coupled with a big ripe target that I like to mock.

I’ve got a great joke for you: “Hey, how many Park Slope Food Co-op members does it take to push a shopping cart down the street?”

Two! Because Ken’s a dumbass. How else is that cart going to get back to the store?

*P.S. Go eat at Scottadito. That place is great.