Dear Wal-Mart...

I’m sorry to say but I am almost at the point of no return. No returning to your store that is. Years ago, you were great, an innovation to shopping. I could go to your store and get everything I needed from milk to mascara to McDonald’s. It used to be kind of exciting at first. Now, well now the last place I choose to go and do my shopping is Wal-Mart. I’m not sure when the switch happened but rather than being just a quick and convenient one-stop-shop, you’ve turned into a popular hangout spot for kids 12-17, a field trip location for large extended families, and a motorized wheelchair track. And I'm not sure if you've paid much attention, but the people of Wal-Mart should I say, very eclectic. Along with the "shirts and shoes required" sign on the entrance door, I strongly feel it should read "shirts, shoes, pants, bras, and the appropriate size clothing required for all ages, as well as bathing and deoderant". Have you looked around?

No longer am I able to simply run in and run out either. The parking lot requires a full on game of Frogger to avoid getting hit by a car circling around trying to get the closet parking space. And just walking into the store is like herding cattle. Upon entering the store and finding which aisle your needed items are located involves a serious game plan in order to make it out swiftly and successfully.  I sincerely feel that the appropriate attire is needed as well: tennis shoes double knotted so there is no time wasted on re-tying or risk of tripping, slim fitting sweat pants that do not drag to avoid stepping in anything not cleaned up on aisle 9, and a comfortable shirt that allows total movement and ability to reach top shelf items.

A map of the store would also help. If my list included apples and an afghan, getting from one side to another can be quite tricky. Much like an obstacle course, crossing over to the other side entails the dodging of loose children and groups of heavy eyeliner wearing Emo teens, -5 MPH motorized wheelchairs, and weaving in and out of the baby department all the way through to the home décor section.

Proceeding to the checkout counter requires strategic thought. Do I go behind the 80 year old lady in the wheelchair with a cart full of cat food and Depends? Or chose the line behind the lady with 2 kids in the cart, a year’s supply of pizza rolls, and circle of family including the grandma, uncle, and 1st, 2nd and 3rd cousin? There is also option C: the self-checkout. This one seems promising. With only 2 items to swipe, how long can it take? Too damn long. Item 1, swiped. Item 2, error: “Please wait for store assistance”. At this point, times up. Waiting for assistance can take longer than watching paint dry. The best option would have been line A. Get behind the little old lady, help her unload her cart, and give her a helpful push out of the line.

Wal-Mart… although I appreciate your competitively low prices, your massive expansion of stores and domination over the local Mom and Pop’s shops has disappointed me. I’m not optimistic, however, that this will happen as it appears to worsen each year but it’s time to step it up and clean up your act.


Home Is Where the Hart Is February 17, 2011 at 9:37 PM  

Can I just say I hate WalMart? I consistently put off going to WallyM until the absolute last minute I must go for something I need. My main problem with the place is they have lower prices....but fewer employees in order to be able to afford the lower prices so the line are super long. What can I say. I'm impatient. I'd rather pay a few cents more for items than stand in a super long line and waste my day/evening.

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