Shop Without Ever Leaving Your Car
|January 25, 2011||Posted by Lauren under Health News|
Rhode Island may be the smallest sized state in the U.S., but that doesn’t mean we don’t have our fair share of accomplishments. Not only does our little state have the longest name (The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations), but it was the first place in the US where polo was played, is home to the world’s largest bug, has the oldest village in New England (Pawtuxet Village), hosted the first open gulf tournament, and apparently never ratified the 18th Amendment…which, in case you’re wondering, was prohibition (I guess we Rhode Islanders love our booze a little too much).
Now it seems we have one more “accomplishment” to add to our name: Rhode Island has become the first state in all of New England to offer a convenience store drive-thru. Yep, you heard right. Cumberland Farms, your favorite gas station and convenience store, has decided to start offering drive-thrus to make our lives easier. The first one is being tested down in Kingston, Rhode Island, and the chain plans to add more by the summer.
Don’t they look so happy?
So the next time you need to pick up a drink and a roll of toilet paper on the way home, you shouldn’t worry — you can order them both right at the window, along with any of the store’s other 3,000 products!
“We’re not just in the convenience store business, we’re in the business of providing for the on-the-go customer,” said Ari Haseotes, president of the Framingham company.
That’s right — thanks to people like Ari Haseotes, us on-the-go Americans never have to get out of the car again! And it’s a good thing too, because time is money, and the less time you waste doing mundane tasks like walking around a store, the more money in your pocket. Right?
I just have to ask — how lazy can we get?? Seriously. Last I checked, convenience stores are pretty small. And I’m guessing they only take about 10 to 15 minutes to walk around, tops….and that’s if you walk really, really slow. Most times, you can glance around, identify the right aisle, grab what you need and get out of there in less than 5 minutes. Do we really need the extra few seconds that not having to leave our car will give us?
And even more importantly — do we really need another reason to sit? It seems to me like Americans are sitting pretty well. We sit in our cars to drive to work, we sit at our desk, we sit on the way home (with quick stops, of course, at McDonald’s drive-thru for dinner and Cumbys for a few household items…all the while still sitting) and then we sit on the couch. All. Night. Long. At the rate we’re going, we’ll never have to stand again!
As lovely as that may sound (standing is hard work, I know), our never-ending quest to make things more convenient isn’t exactly doing our health any good. We all know the stats: rates of obesity have increased dramatically over the last 20 years, roughly 30% of the population is obese (source), and this generation of children is the first that may have a shorter life expectancy than their parents (source). Not only is America’s weight problem threatening our lives, but it’s expensive too! Direct medical costs from obesity are in the billions of dollars.
So why, then, do we continue to shape the environment in ways that make it easier and easier for us to be unhealthy? And why are we letting our need for fast solutions and a company’s need for greater profits dictate the type of environment we live in? At some point, America needs a wake-up call. Because this Cumberland Farms idea isn’t just a drive-thru, and it’s not just a new and novel concept to make our lives easier. It represents another step in the wrong direction. A step away from encouraging people to get up and get moving. To walk for transportation, to slow down and enjoy life a little. And it represents a sad trend — where the fastest solution will always be the most profitable.
I’m sorry if you think the ability to order a few snacks and some toothpaste through a window without leaving your warm car on a cold winter day is pretty cool. I honestly find the whole thing a bit ridiculous. And it makes me wonder — where this will ever stop?
I’ve said my piece, now let’s hear yours! Is this drive-thru the epitome of our laziness? Or do you totally disagree, and think it’s the greatest thing since, well the invention of drive-thrus!