Friday, March 13, 2009

Don't Yell at your Mom

Dear Wal-Mart,

You did it again. I don't know when I'm going to learn the lesson that every time I go there I'm going to get shoved to the ground and kicked by you.

I just spent 2 hours in your store. Two. Two hours. As in 1 hour plus 1 hour equals 2 hours of my life spent with people who like to yell at each other. Well, actually, two hours and 10 minutes. So more than two hours. TWO HOURS, WAL-MART!

What happened was this: I needed to get my oil changed. Generally I would just ask my dad to do it but I kept forgetting and I'm driving out to Palm Springs tomorrow and I wanted to make sure my car had enough of all the essential fluids in her and I have a 90 minute lunch break on Friday and you're just right down the street from the office so at least I can shop for mascara while I wait, right? So I went.

They told me it would be awhile but I wasn't too concerned because you're a big store. There's plenty of things to do. I looked at mascara and picked out colors I would paint my apartment if it were allowed. I tried on two very unflattering tops and talked myself out of a pair of shoes. But the time kept ticking by and I was hungry for my lunch. And then I started noticing the same thing I always notice at your store - that people who are suppose to love each other don't really act like they do. Because everywhere I turned there were families yelling at each other. Since when did it become okay to yell at your mom?

Even the workers were snipping at each other. There were the two in the electronics department who were arguing over their hours. And the ones next to the shoes who were complaining about their boss. And then the supervisor who chewed out an employee, in the middle of the store, for not stocking the towels right. It was so depressing. So I went out to the garden center and stared at the California Poppies for a while. Is there anything cheerier than a loose cluster of poppies?

But I eventually had to go back in so I just sat in the little waiting room (why is it that every lube place has chairs that feel like they've been coated in engine dust?) and waited for them to call my name. And while I waited I was treated to a customer using the most appalling language on one of the workers because he had to wait an extra 15 minutes for his car to be finished. I left feeling like I had been kicked in the gut.

I don't know what you can do about this. Maybe you could put signs up that say things like "Hug. Don't hit," or "Say kind things," or "Don't yell at your mom." Or maybe you can pipe in James Taylor through your speakers. I know that whenever I'm feeling a little cranky I just put in James and suddenly I feel a lot better. I bet free ice cream would help too.




Jenny said...

Don't ever go to a Wal-Mart in Mississippi. In addition to the normal amount of yelling and complaining, you'll see people hitting each other, women laying on the ground screaming, children with metal teeth because their parents never taught them how to brush and then their teeth rotted out of their heads, and visible dirt on every surface. But Wal-Mart in Mississippi is a big step up from a dollar store in Louisiana. I'm still traumatized by that day.

Anonymous said...

so what i hear you saying is, you might have a false sdvertising lawsuit against wal-mart -

"your life, better."

Rach said...

Jenny speaks the truth (writes the truth). She and I have both spent many hours in the armpit of the world. I walked into the Walmart that's near my house now and thought I'd walked into the wrong store, because I could tell what color the floor was supposed to be. Then I heard a mom screaming at her 1-year-old, and was brought back to the reality that I was in a Walmart. I never did wander into a dollar store in Louisiana. The ones in Vicksburg scared me enough, so Jenny, you're braver than me. Rachel, you live in the land of shopping. Go anywhere else you can. Every time. Please. For your own sanity.

The Katzbox said...

It's very bad. One of my favorite Wal-Mart stories was told by my friend who is originally from Victoria Island in British Columbia. She is as pale as the moon and she has shocking red hair as well as freckles everywhere. BTW, we live by the Wal-Mart in Palm Springs. Anyway, she was in that particular store one afternoon, bending down to get something from the bottom of the shelf and a woman behind her cleared her throat loudly, my friend didn't respond, then the woman sniffed even louder, my friend still didn't respond, finally the woman says, "EXCUSE ME! Do you speak English?". My friend stood up, realized she was speaking to HER and said, "Lady, number 1. I'm the whitest person in this store and 2. I don't work here." And she walked away. That's our WM in PS...the weirdest of the weird.....if they're not yelling at each other, they're going to yell at you....nice.

Wendy said...

They should paint the interiors of all Wal-Marts pale pink, like my mom says they do to inmate's cells. It is supposed to have a psychologically calming effect. And I second the idea of having James Taylor albums playing on a loop. Actually, I think that's a good idea for everywhere I go. I love James.

Stephanie said...

Any hicktown, rundown Walmart in "the south" is better than the best Walmart in Southern California. We've tested this on several occasions. You just live in the wrong place for Walmart.

colleeeen said...

how is it possible that we were both in Palm Springs yesterday and didn't see each other? i even talked about you yesterday in Palm Spings. that is very, very freaky. Did you see Elvis driving a red cadillac? i did.

Chris said...

Great idea, Rachel. How could anyone be mad with "Shower the People" and "You've Got a Friend" playing in the background, and a dish of ice cream topped with magic shell in their hands. I'm convinced that's why our grocery store sells 50 cent ice cream cones.