Would you rather pick up dog poo or help a lady with a pram?

Apparently most people pick the poo.

Having recently stepped into the parenting world, means that I have also become that lady with a pram. ‘Sorry’, ‘excuse me’, ‘could you please just move your chair over a little bit so I can get past’, ‘please’, ‘thank you’, ‘please’… I am that polite lady with a pram, but I still get dirty looks for inconveniencing a previously peaceful, clutter free space. Prams are bulky. They get in the way. They make visiting all the best, tucked away little coffee shops for a morning brew impossible. And they require assistance to get on and off most public transport.


The other morning I caught the tram into the city with the pram (and baby) for the first time. When the tram pulled up there were around 20 people already seated. I waited at the stop, and the tram drew to a halt with the central doors right in front of me. They opened and I waited, looking up into the faces of my fellow passengers-to-be for one kindly soul to offer to help me with the pram. No-one did. A little surprised, but not fussed, thinking perhaps they didn’t see me, I pushed up to the front doors, knocked on the glass and requested assistance from the driver. He dutifully obeyed my sweet plea for a pram lift up the stairs. We happily rode into the city with my little nugget smiling, chuckling and taking in the new experience and surrounds in a very cute, happy and non-offensive manner.

When it came time to disembark there were now around 40 people on the tram. As we pulled into the busy city stop right near Southern Cross station, there were around another 20 people on the platform. Checking that all toys, drink bottles and blankets were re-attached to the pram I stood at the door way ready to get off. The doors opened and no-one made eye contact or offered assistance. Not wanting to be ’that-woman-that-has-a-pram-and-demands-help’ I started the slow and precise process of lowering the pram forwards down the large tram steps by myself. The people waiting to board the pram did courteously make room for me to exit, but even in my slow-motion solo-step-decent not one person offered to help. Amazing. Where are all the nice people gone I thought.

And that afternoon I found them. They own dogs and walk on the beach.

happy dog at beach

About 8 hours later that same day I was taking my dog for a walk along the beach. This time, no pram, but instead a baby strapped to my chest in the carrier. Our dog is a golden retriever, so she is a big dog. Which means she eats a lot… and poo’s a lot, especially during a lovely afternoon stroll. When I arrived there were only two other people and their dogs on the beach. One at each end. As we began our beach lap, sure enough, my dog takes her first pit stop to empty the bowels. When I have baby strapped on I have a good wide-legged lunge system that I use to collect my dog’s packages. It works well. Just as I was getting my hand into the doggie bag, and doing the important double check for holes, the only other person within 500 meters of me on the beach came over and offered to pick up the dog poo for me.

OFFERED TO PICK UP MY DOG’S POO. Amazing. Who does that?!
I thanked him profusely, but said I had a system and was all good. On with our walk we went up to the other end of the beach. I think my dog knows when the walk is coming to an end as she always does one to start and one to finish. So just as I am getting sorted for my wide-stanced lunge again , I hear an ‘excuse me, would you like me to get that for you? It looks like you have your hands full with the baby too’. What?! A second person offering to pick up my dog’s poo. This time I accepted the offer and walked away swinging my little doggie bag of disgusting that a total stranger had collected on my behalf.
So would people really prefer to pick up a stranger’s dog’s poo rather than help them with their pram? Is it that only nice people own dogs and rude people take trams? Do people just hate prams? Or when you are one of a crowd you can sit back, blend in and pretend not to notice – but when you are solo you feel responsibility to assist?
So many questions.
What do you reckon?

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