Good parenting at WalMart

I like Walmart but tend to avoid the place because the customers there tend to get on my nerves. And yeah, I know there’s some built-in irony about complaining about a group of people when I’m a member of that group. Fortunately, Sheri and I have found a loophole that allows us to avoid the generally-unpleasant experience that Walmart customers can be: Friday nights.

Friday nights at the closest Walmart to us tend to be pretty dead. So we’ve been known to grab a bite to eat after work and then go discount shopping. The cattle and their offspring who tend to clog the aisles there are in much lower numbers and the experience can be downright pleasant. This was the case a couple of days ago when we were shopping.

I find it amusing how much the WalMart logo looks like a yellow and slightly stylized version of Kurt Vonnegut Jr.'s drawing of an anus in "Breakfast of Champions".

I find it amusing how much the WalMart logo
looks like a yellow and slightly-stylized version of
Kurt Vonnegut Jr.’s drawing of an anus
in “Breakfast of Champions”.

We did our rounds and grabbed the items we needed. Somewhere along the way, Sheri found a Redbox DVD case with a DVD in it. (If you don’t know Redbox, it’s a great way to rent DVDs. Inexpensive an convenient, but I digress.) SCORE! Free movie rental. We both looked at the DVD and neither of us recognized the name of the movie of the most-likely-male person on it who looked like he needed a nice hot shower and a hair cut. Given that neither of us had any interest in perusing the adventures of the person-with-questionable-hygiene on the cover, the only appropriately-karmic solution was to go to the Redbox kiosk and return it, avoiding the renter the expense of a wayward DVD.

I was trapped in line behind people apparently provisioning for another Lewis and Clark expedition. They only had one cart of items, but it the checkout belt was overflowing with goods that couldn’t have fit into three carts. Walmart must have Tardis carts that allow more than their volume to be put into them. The cashier was doing a quick job. The couple ahead of me just had hundreds of items. Canned food. Cat food. Bags and bags of chips. Various household paper products. Soaps. Detergents. Meat. Soft drinks. Possibly a car and an antelope. Since I had already put my items on the conveyor belt behind theirs, I was trapped behind them. There’s some unwritten rule of checkout line etiquette that I thought I heard somewhere that indicates that once your products are on that belt, you’re committed to that line. So I was stuck.

Being stuck in a slow line, this gave Sheri time to return the DVD to our friends at Redbox. So she did. Return away. Scored some good karma. As she was looking at the movies available to rent after returning tthe DVD, a father and son came up and were obviously looking for something. She said that she found a DVD and had just returned it. The father thanked her since a lost DVDs at Redbox costs up to $25 depending on how many nights it’s gone (or if it’s kept). She expressed a little dismay that she had not found them before returning the movie and the father told her that what she did was the right thing and that his son had “lost the privilege of seeing that movie anyway.”

Wow. That’s good parenting. Teaching the child responsibility. I congratulate you, sir. If I was there or knew who he was, I’d rent HIM a movie.

Oh and about a half hour later the folks in front of us were done and we got out handful of items checked out and went home. Despite being much older leaving the store than when I came in I actually had a good Walmart experience.


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