ABOUT: This project


WTF

What is this? It’s a collection of found grocery lists. No, really. There are more than 3,000 posted here.

A short history

St. Louis, 1997: I found an abandoned grocery list in a Schnuck’s parking lot. I picked it up. It seemed interesting. So, of course, I decided to keep them every time I came across one. And the internet is a great place to do stupid things. So here it is. Most of the lists are predictably mundane, but a few standouts earn spots in the Lists of Top 10 Lists.

Why

I like other people’s grocery lists. They’re funny. A lot of people cannot spell very well. I try not to make fun of them too much. That’s not true. And some people buy funny combinations of things. That’s all. I used to collect key chains. I also collect small stones that look like shoes. And junk from the street. And old box cameras. And dirt. And some other stuff.

I wrote a book based on this site

Buy the grocery lists book!It was one of the first blog-to-book projects (originally published in 2007, reprinted in 2011). It’s called Milk Eggs Vodka: Grocery Lists Lost & Found. and was published by HOW Books, part of F+W Publications, the publishers of Print and HOW magazines and many other quality books and magazines. So in addition to the certain crisp wit you’ve come to expect from me, you are be guaranteed a great presentation from the design-savvy folks at F+W. It has 20 hilarious chapters, is printed in full-color, contains 240 pages and will look really cool on your coffee table (or your dining room table!). And hey — it’s available on Amazon, in hardcover, paperback, and Kindle versions!

Things learned

More people than I thought like onions. Mayonnaise is difficult to spell. So is banana, apparently. And anchovies. And yogurt. There are a lot of notepads out there touting the greatness of numerous bizarrely-named pharmaceuticals. I used to think my handwriting was lame. Now I don’t. And lastly, very few people leave their grocery lists in the cart like they should!

Things you should know

By submitting lists to the GLC, you grant the GLC a perpetual, royalty-free license to use, reproduce, modify, publish, distribute, and otherwise exercise all copyright and publicity rights with respect to those lists its sole discretion, including posting it to websites and incorporating it in other works in any current and future media, including without limitation published books. If you do not wish to grant the GLC these rights, it is suggested that you do not contribute your lists or any lists you find. All submissions are essentially anonymous, and no specific personal information is published without your permission. The basic idea is this: If you send me a list, you are releasing it to me to have fun with it, to try to become a billionaire with it — and to share it with everyone. btw, I made a pretty comprehensive downloadable PDF for you to use when you go shopping. It’s free, and it’s called The Ultimatest Grocery List.

Origins of the collected specimens

I don’t really keep track of where each list of from. I sort of wish I had when I started, but this project is ridiculous enough without having to scientifically catalog each item. Many of them were found by me in St. Louis, Missouri, but numerous people from around the world have contributed individual lists, an envelope full, or even entire boxes to the collection since it started, including a few wonderful people who have donated in the hundreds. Thank you! You can donate as well.

Tech

This started out completely hand-coded HTML. That was a pain. Then the weblog portions were powered by Blogger for years but everything’s now running on the wonderful WordPress. The product ads on the individual post are served by Amazon Associates. The text ads on all other pages are served by Google AdSense. These advertising programs help pay our bandwidth-heavy site hosting costs (50+ gigs/month!) and buy our groceries.

Other

btw, my name is Bill Keaggy and I like the Web. Some of my other projects include keaggy.com, 50sadchairs.com, reddykilowatt.org and xBlog, among others.

Want to contribute some lists? Contact us!