Saturday, August 25, 2007

Sex, Walmart and Videotape (well, not videotape......or sex)

Why does WalMart only exist to drive me insane? That question has become pretty much a staple of any visit to their supercenter. Along with me saying after every visit how much I hate Walmart and will never shop there again.

It's not just the throngs of zombiefied shoppers banging into me with their carts and standing dazed in the middle of the aisle so that I can't pass while they spend ten minutes staring at the spaghetti sauce and doing the maybe-this-one dance.

(The one where they stand there tapping their foot and then finally reach out for a jar... think better of it and draw their arm back.. tap for a little longer.. reach out again.. change their mind and chew on their finger nail. Tap.. twist and reach.. tap twist and reach.. tap.. tap.. tap... until you just want to ram them with your cart and knock them over for being so damn indecicive about something as idiotic as Traditional Ragu vs Traditional Prego.)

No, what really drives me batty are the lines.

Long lines stretched all the way back past the magazines and candy to the cardboard displays of whatever Chicken Soup For The Soul type book is currently making the rounds by appealing to the depressed and downtrodden.

(My hatered for all things Chicken Soup related is a blog unto itself. They took a corny idea and brought it from sappy to almost painfully embarrassing. I mean.. how many of these things are they going to come out with?? And how many sub-sections of society are they going to specifically target? Chicken Soup For The Teenager's Soul, Chicken Soup for the Cheerleader's Soul, Chicken Soup For The Person Born On A Tuesday's Soul, Chicken Soup For Albert L. Preston of 200 Wallaby Ln.'s Soul....)

And it never fails that there are always only two or three registers lit up.. and at least one of them is having some sort of pricing issue that requires an annoyed looking cashier to repeatedly get on their little phone and request help while their patience stretches thinner and thinner. "Price Check Assistance at Register 2, please.. .. Price check assistance at register 2.......assistance at register 2...... register 2.... Jacob, come give me a hand at register 2... JACOB!!!!"

And I just don't understand why there will be employees everywhere, but no cashiers. I see people in their Walmart uniform all over... stocking, talking, standing at that little stupid desk thing they always have set up to try and push you into applying for a WalMart card by playing up the junk they have arranged on the table to "tempt" you... but no one that can work a register.

( The card nazis are another pet peeve. "Do you have a WalMart card? If you apply today you get a free gift.".... "Free gift? What free gift?".... "This handy dandy WalMart logo umbrella featuring sturdy plastic wood-grain look handle and the ability to transform from the closed to open position with ease!"... "No thank you."... "But it's an umbrella.. a free umbrella featuring the Happy Face Walmart logo! You're just going to walk away? How can you walk away?? Come back! It could rain! IT COULD RAIN!!!")

But what I really don't understand is this... if you never plan on having more than three or four open lanes... then why in the hell build 35? That just seems like poor planning to me.

It's like they were a little over-confident on the size of the demand in comparison to the actual coverage they'd require.

In the spirit of constructive criticism, I'd like to offer WalMart some advice:

1. Know your patrons.. remember to stock up on the tried and true, but always keep a supply of the unexpected on hand. If I finish shopping without ever pausing to say "Oh, my Gosh! What is THAT??".. then you're just not putting enough effort into satisfying your customers.

2. Size does matter, but whether you're a shopette or a supercenter... at least know how to move your product.

3. You aren't the only game in town. If you can't provide proper supply for the demand I'll be forced to take my business elsewhere.. repeatedly.

Oh well.. have to run..

Yes.. I'm going grocery shopping. At Walmart.

And yes, I'm aware of how lame that makes me, ROFL


Ally Brown said...

That was hands-down hilarious! Be sure to post more so I can get my laughter for the day. You are a good writer. I'm with you all the way about Walmart and their bazillion registers and only three of them are open. I've thought the same thing. Hahaha! We should go shopping there together.

Ally Brown said...

Oh yeah, and the Chicken Soup for the Soul...that was awesome! I've thought the same thing but it never hit me like the way you explained it. I would always think, "Another CSftS out?" And would notice another sub-title about it being for the lovers or the mothers or the father (like they would read it) or for the cheerleaders. I always thought it was ridiculous. But your definition of it was perfect! Now I won't be able to look at one of the books the same (and I own two or three of them--before they got sub-titley weird).

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