Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Walmart Rage!

It's kind of funny (but not funny "ha ha") that while Patti was writing her "Walmart Woes" blog, saying Bobbi would NEVER be caught dead at Walmart, at that very moment I happened to be at Walmart! I hate Walmart with every fiber of my being. Let me explain, as this is a "normal" visit for me. The story rarely varies.

The story you are about to read includes unfortunate events from different trips to Walmart, but alot of it happened yesterday. For me, it's nothing unusual.

On my way to Walmart, I try to psych myself up for a pleasant experience, or at least not a raging meltdown. The first problem comes with trying to pry the carts apart while the "friendly greeter" either stares at you with a blank look, or turns his or her back on you so he or she can growl at all the other "potential customers." Until you can actually wrestle a cart free from the massive lockdown of other carts, you remain a potential customer, because like me, you may be intolerant enough to turn around and walk right out of the store thru the entrance, which really confuses the greeter.

Off I go with my limping, squeeking basket, trying to hold my head high. This is not easy! I only have a few items on my list and I've planned well enough to keep my shopping in just one area of the store. Yes, when I go to Walmart, I PLAN where I'm going to have to shop.

While in the grocery department I try to go down the void-of-customers aisles, because the alternative is more than I can take. Should someone else be in the aisle, here's the drill. I pick up what I need, then am trapped from going forward or backward from that point. The other customers park their carts in such a way as to block 2/3 of the aisle, while they stand, popping their gum and yelling at their children in the remaining 1/3 of the aisle. This procedure takes some mathematical skill to pull off.

I stand there, trying my hardest to smile and act as if I think their kids are cute as they struggle from their mother's grip. Does the mother move so everyone else can get by? NO! At this point, the "no passing" rule has been permanently enforced! My heart sinks. Other customers behind me are shifting their weight from one foot to the other, sighing OUT ME!! So I have to tell the mother to "Please move" or sometimes it's just "Move!" After the glares,she wrangles her cart out of the way so I can begin my strategic navigation thru the rest of the patrons. I've been in the store about 4 minutes by this time. This part of the story never varies....ever. The only difference is in which aisles (plural) is this going to happen?

After getting my groceries, I remembered needing one more thing. Now I have to veer away from the "plan." Walmart on Mesa is remodeling, or so they think. All they're really doing is shuffling things around so even the employees don't know where they are. I was directed in 3 different directions by 3 different sales associates, as they're called. This detour made a significant dent in the 10,000 Steps-a-Day exercise plan! But I was successful in finding what I needed.

I went to the self check-out, which is never a smooth process, but preferable to being checked out by a human at Walmart. It's rare that a customer can get thru that process without the machine breaking down at some point. Yesterday was a new low. When I rang up a bottle of Tilex, the machine asked for my age! Apparently you can't buy Tilex any longer unless you're over 18!

So that part behind me, not without issues, and by now I'm REALLY worked up, I take my cart to my car. Unlike Patti, I go straight to my car. It's important for me to know where my car is, especially at Walmart - I need a no-fail exit strategy.

You all know how I am about my car, so I park far away from the door, but when I return with my groceries, I'm surrounded by other cars, one parked so close I can't open my driver's door. I wondered how they got out of THEIR car. There are also a good number of carts wedged between my car and the others because the customers are too lazy (or maybe they're lives are just too busy!) to take their carts to the cart corral. I'm grinding my teeth by now. My jaw aches.

While I'm putting my groceries in my trunk another car pulls up to wait for my parking spot. I don't understand this because it's not a particularly good spot, but I don't really care. After putting away the groceries, I take my cart to the cart corral, because it's the right thing to do. Angrily, and before I can get back to my car, the waiting car has sped off! I guess he was unhappy about the cart corral event.

THIS is why I don't go to Walmart.


  1. My mother and I were laughing so hard as we tried to read this outloud to each other, that we couldn't understand what the other was saying, so we had to take turn reading. We were also crying. I have some good tips for you, though, on how you can give this blog more visual appeal for your miriad readers. I will be coming over tonight to show you. Shall I bring all 7 kids? (JK)

  2. You know, if you go to Walmart at 5am there ususally isn't a crowd in the store - but then you have to maneuver around all the stockboys and crates of stuff to be stocked! It's really a draw in the store, but at least the parking lot isn't as bad!

  3. I tagged you guys. Just go to my blog, follow the rules of the tag, and you have a new post! This should be good...

  4. To Funny!! And totally true. I sadly worked there and know that pretty much everything you said happens a million times if not more a day!!

    P.S. don't work there anymore thankfullly

  5. Sad- that your trip to Walmart in Cleveland was ALMOST a good experience. However, when you come back, I will take you to the Walmart in Amish country, and you will leave a happy woman. Ben went in a bit grumpy, and came out very excited and inquisitive.

  6. Being tall, large, and speaking Spanish help while shopping at WalMart. Also, if you leave your cart at the end of the isle and venture into the isle unprotected, you can get in and out much more quickly without having to be subjected to 'stares'. At the same time you are adversely affecting a much greater volume of traffic in the highly used main thoroughfares (but not be subjected to as many 'stares' - only the few that happen to be present when you re-claim your cart).
    Usefull tips from a frequent WalMart visitor as of late.........

  7. Oh no, Bobbi, I AM one of those Walmart Moms with the "adorable" kids - but I thought that people really DID think my kids were cute! Now I'll know if they smile tolerantly at me, I'll just shoot 'em down with a "Don't give me that! I know what you're REALLY thinking!" slam!

  8. I live in Ohio (Akron, currently), and have been to Wal*Marts in Cleveland and Amish country. Don't let "Globe Trotters" post fool you. while I get stressed in every Wal*Mart (or any big box store), I almost got into a fist fight in one of the Amish Country Wal*Marts... The one in Wooster, Ohio, to be precise.