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Wally World Woes

I'll admit, although I try to do the shop locally thing, I shop at Wal Mart. I'm seriously considering changing that in lieu of my past 3 visits.

Yes, in all 3 of my past visits, I have been unpleasantly surprised.

Visit 1
Location: Spencer, Iowa
I entered the store at 13 hundred hours on a Saturday. After strictly following the predetermined shopping list, and having 1 full cart, 1 shirt with juice spilled on it, and 1 screaming almost 2 year old, I found the nearest open checkout lane. I began attempting to unload my cart, whilst attempting to keep said almost 2 year old in the cart and putting all the candy bars back into their respective boxes after said 2 year old pulled them out. After emptying nearly all of my cart, I realized the checker had yet to start scanning any of my items. I looked at her with one of those, "um, and you're waiting because" stares when she promptly replied "You put the things on my belt in the wrong order."

Up until this point in my life, I was not aware there was a wrong way to put my items on the belt. Especially because I have always been somewhat conscious of what I am purchasing, and therefore had already put like items together - and hadn't put the bread underneath the 5 pound bag of frozen chicken breasts.

So I say, "well what would you like to scan first."
And she says, "it's too late now, I'll just do it like this."
And I have no response.

Lady cashier picks up my first item, a jug of motor oil. She thoroughly inspects it, then screws the cap on as tight as she can, scans it, takes a bag off of the bag spinner thingy, wraps the oil in a bag, and places it into a second bag. Lady cashier picks up my second item, a jug of motor oil. I'm beginning to think this was a bad choice of lanes, considering I have 5 jugs of motor oil, oh yeah, and all the rest of my groceries. Slow forward to jug 4 of motor oil, lady cashier accidentally opens the jug instead of attempting to tighten the jug. Lady cashier gets a look of panic and quickly responds, "I'll go get a new one." I respond even quicker, "no, it's fine."

At this point, we are honest to goodness 8 minutes into checking out when we get to the container of blueberries I am desiring to purchase. Let's rewind a bit - in the produce section there are 3 containers of blueberries left. I look at package 1 - moldy. I look at package 2 - smashed. I look at package 3 - perfection. Back to checking out, lady cashier picks up my blueberries and says "sometimes these get moldy, I'll check to make sure..." at which point she turns the package completely upside down, without holding the top, and the blueberries subsequently spill all over the the scanner. I start picking them up, as does she, while she starts lecturing me on how if I put them in a colander and wash them when I get home they will be just fine. She scans the carton then walks away. After 3 or 4 minutes, I begin to wonder exactly what is going on, when I see her emerge from customer service, with an odd looking silver box in her hand. As she approaches, I see she has completely wrapped my entire blueberry container in duct tape.

I think at this point, it became apparent that I was not happy. Lady cashier finished scanning my things, and I swiped my credit card. The pin pad informed me to "ask cashier to press credit" and thus, I told her I was paying with credit.

Blank stare.

So I say, "it says to press credit."
And she says, "I just have to wait, it will go"
30 seconds.....45 seconds......1 minute
I say, "it still says to press credit."
And she says, "*sigh* FINE, but I work here and I know how to do this." *presses button*

*Transaction Completes*

Notice to consumers - do not, I repeat, DO NOT use the checker lane with the odd wig cashier lady!

Visit 2
Location: Spencer, Iowa
I met my parents for lunch in Spencer last Saturday afternoon. We did some shopping, and me madre and I found an open lane...and purposely skipped odd wig cashier's lane. We had a bottle of shampoo and conditioner that had a rebate form attached. As the checker scanned it, I said "I need a reprint of our receipt to send in with the rebate." We finished our transaction, and I was handed the receipt and a gift receipt - which if you haven't seen one, does not have any transaction data listed, it just says "gift receipt." I said, no I need an actual receipt to send in with a rebate.

Cashier response, "I guess I don't get what you mean."
My response, "I need you to print me another one of these *holds up receipt*"
Cashier response, "Oh, I can't do that now that I'm done with your transaction."
My response, "That's why I asked you before we paid for one."
Cashier response, *blank stare*

So, I go to customer service, shampoo bottle and receipt in hand.
Me - "I need a reprint of this receipt to send in with a rebate offer."
Customer service associate - "the checker has to do that for you."
Me - "the checker told me she couldn't do it."
Customer service associate - "well all I could do is ring it up again and give you that receipt."
Me - "but then I would be paying for it twice."
Customer service associate - "well I don't know how else to get you a second receipt."
Me - "let's start over. Hi, I'd like to return this shampoo."
Customer service associate - "ok, was there anything wrong with it?"
Me - "nope, just don't want it."
Customer service associate - "ok *refunds, gives me change*"
Me - "I'd like to buy this shampoo please, and I need two receipts for a rebate."
Customer service associate - "um, ok *rings in shampoo, prints 2 receipts*"

Note to self - screw rebates, just buy the cheap shampoo to begin with.

Visit 3
Location: Spirit Lake, Iowa
I went with my buddy Nikki to get a trampoline for her kids. Our trip is uneventful, in fact quite good with the kind help from the sporting goods associate.
Then, we go to check out ( this a recurring theme?) We pick the line that has one couple almost done, and a guy with one item. As we get closer, we realize there's an issue with the people checking out. Inadvertently, the cashier had added $25 to their gift card instead of redeeming the $25 card. The customer service associate tells the couple the only way to fix it is to either have them pay for the extra money on the card and use it next time, or to void the entire transaction and start over. Looking at the 2 full carts they've just purchased, they go with pay for the card.

As the cashier does my stuff, I notice that he puts each item in it's own bag. One can of soup, one bra, one can of corn, one container of sour cream. I inform him that everything is fine in the same bag and proceed to move everything into one myself. He checks out Nikki and says, "I'll get some help for you to load your car." We proceed to wait for 2 young beefy lads to come help. Their conversation:

Beefy dude #1 - "wow, only $250 for a trampoline, that's cheap!"
Beefy dude #2 - "yeah, I just bought one at Menards and it was like $800"
Beefy dude #1 - "no way dude, I would have made my parents buy it."
Beefy dude #2 - "man I shoulda done that."

The beefy dudes put the trampoline in our car, and then walk away, leaving the big cart right in front of our car. I push it back in, hollering after them, "hey, where does this go?" They both turned around, then looked at each other, giggled like beefy dudes shouldn't, and kept walking.

SO, needless to say, my past few outings to Wal Mart have been, well, lacking that sorta fuzzy feeling I normally get when I save money.


  1. Sad...this just makes me miss Wal-Mart.

    ...or maybe I just miss cheap shopping in general?!


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