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Man drives tiny car into convenience store, damages nothing

Commentary: In China, a driver can't be bothered to look for a parking spot, so he cruises right into a store.

 Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


The smart way to shop?

People's Daily/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

The need for small cars has never been greater.

As the masses huddle in cities, desperate to earn a crust, there seem to be fewer places to park and so little room on the road.

I feel sure, though, that the designers of, say, the Smart Fortwo never considered the level of convenient enterprise shown by a man in China. 

In surveillance footage posted Tuesday on YouTube by People's Daily in China, a man in Zhenjiang drives straight into a convenience store. Yes, right through the open doors and into the aisle. 

Next, he asks the staff to get him what he wants. The man behind the counter seems frantically bemused. He runs to the driver, perhaps to remonstrate. 

But the driver appears to be a decent human being because the clerk proceeds to choose items from the shelf for him, rings him up, takes the products back to him and gets money for the purchase.

Finally, he helps the man carefully reverse his way out of the store.

The People's Daily says the man didn't want to waste time looking for a parking spot. Another report suggests it was raining at the time, which dampened the driver's enthusiasm for parking and then walking in the drizzle. But the car in the video doesn't actually look wet.

Naturally, some might think this as painfully lazy, entitled behavior. Who did this Smart Alec think he was? How dare he?

The more generous might notice that he didn't appear to have damaged the store at all, nor did he block anyone else from doing their shopping.

Perhaps he inadvertently showed us what the future will look like. Every remaining physical store will be a drive-thru. We'll slip our tiny cars inside, point to whatever we need and friendly staff -- or robots -- will scurry around to help us out.

Then we'll carefully reverse out of the store, ready to resume our lazy, entitled lives. 

I'm sure Amazon -- a company that's already been thinking about stores with no staff -- is already preparing a prototype for the, um, smart drive-thru shopping experience.

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