Tuesday, April 03, 2007

First National Savings Bank of Wal-Mart

And no, this is not about Wal-Mart's banking plans. This is about people who confuse "cheap" for affordable, buy it, take it home, then have a crisis of confidence and then bring a buggy full of that crap back to my counter on a Sunday and want me to refund $90 worth of cilantro, tomatoes, cans of corn and other stuff because they can't budget properly. Yes. That's what this is about.

Now I'll do my job. It does tend to require a LITTLE bit of communication on behalf of the customer. Like, DO YOU WANT TO RETURN THAT PILE OF CRAP OR NOT?

Setting a bag of tomatoes on the counter and looking at me isn't really communication in any language. I'm not telepathic. If I were, you'd turn and run. Fast. Very fast. But I digress.

It's a Sunday, so the Service Desk is backed up like a toilet at Yankee Stadium. I've got a line and this guy pushing a cart full of tied off bags of groceries comes up. He starts unloading them onto the counter and I ask him in English if I can help him. I get a blank stare. And then he throws out a receipt from about three hours ago.

I switch to Spanish and he answers me in English - "No speak English." Good lord. A comedian.

I try again and he's like "Return all." My eyes get wide and I'm like "What's wrong with it?" Because I just have to know. And he doesn't want to tell me.

So I drag him out to Number 14 where my girl Lucretia is working. I'm like "Can you ask him what he's doing?" She gives him the third degree in rapid Spanish. I'm following. And I'm like "Ask him why he's returning all that stuff." And he tells us "It's cheaper at the dollar store."

I've had people bring stuff in for price adjustments, or ask us to give them the cheaper price because it was $5 less at Kmart, but food? Food? Wal-Mart is the cheapest food game in town. They killed off Winn-Dixie. That stuff from those discount and off-brand places will kill you too. I'm pretty sure I know what sort of place he's talking about -- and it's like dented cans and stuff retailers have sent back to vendors. Any thoughts there?

So I refunded it. And it came up to about $90. And the man had spilled a jar of strawberry syrup in the bags, so every freaking thing in there was sticky. I just kept scanning, hitting keys and giving him mean looks. Scan, hit keys, mean looks. It was just an entirely pointless exercise.

And for the coup de grace he hauled out a big jug of mayonaise that I KNOW is a Sam's Club item. Which we're not supposed to return. My line was eight people long. I was just like "Frell it" and scanned it. It rang up, so I guess I can defend returning it.

The point of all this is that while I know he has a perfect right to return his children if he has a receipt for them, DID YOU NOT KNOW YOU DIDN'T HAVE ENOUGH MONEY BEFORE YOU SHOPPED?

You rented those groceries for four hours, took them home and then decided you didn't like them. I fail to see exactly how the budgeting gods "inspired" you in that brief time period. But thank you for your patronage. We'll keep you in mind when we start our chain of Wal-Mart Banks.

People do that with clothes too -- all the time. One woman made me do that with $400 worth of kids clothes once. I don't think she even had kids. She just wanted them. It took me 40 minutes and I was so hacked off by the time the whole ordeal was over because she kept trying to distract me and move the piles of stuff around. If you can't afford to shop, keep your hands in your pockets!

14 comments:

chunes said...

This was especially bad with layaway. People figure since they have TWO WHOLE MONTHS to pay for something, they can grab everything their little hearts desire and put it on layaway. Most layaways ended up cancelled, no joke. Probably about 65% of them. No wonder Wal-mart did away with layaway. Get a credit card, people. :p

Erin Bradley said...

What happens to food that's returned? Do you guys have to throw it all away? Is there a different policy for something like a bag of carrots vs. canned goods?

Anonymous said...

no, all food is sent to claims for credit from the vendor, or it is destoyed.

sarah said...

I think some people have serious shopping problems. I get similar things at my store (not walmart though) where people will buy a few hundred dollars worth of stuff, and then return it all.

MavenofMoxie said...

I hope the perishable, loose items, such as fruits & produce, were not placed back on the shelf for someone else to purchase & consume. That's disgusting. You can't buy fresh produce at any dollar store I know of & all of the foods are the worst kind of processed crap ever, full of sodium, dehydrated bits & MSG.

Anonymous said...

He didn't pay with foodstamps (EBT), did he? I used to get people doing that to me all the time--returning a whole bunch of food they had purchased with their EBT card, and then trying to return it for cash......and when I would tell them I had to put it back on their EBT card, they would throw such a fit (like the lady I had once that tried to return $80 worth of steaks she had bought with her card--and when I told her that the money had to go back on her EBT card, she asked if I could just do a no receipt return! 'Um, no, I already saw that you used your card, m'am, it has to go back on there. And we don't take food back without a receipt.' Same thing with WIC items----I used to get this lady that would, once a month, try to return 2 boxes of w-m brand cereal, milk, cheese, juice, and eggs, with no reciept. I've been on WIC before, and I know exactly what the check they give you is for. In the beginning, I would tell her I couldn't take food back without a receipt (store-specific policy, too many people trying to return EBT and WIC stuff), but we weren't allowed to say 'because it's WIC items', I guess because people would get offended if we assumed they were on WIC. Eventually, though, with this lady coming back month after month, I finally told her, "m'am, these are WIC items, and we can't take WIC items back--it's the governments money paying for it---that's why the cashier doesn't give you a reciept', and do you know she would still argue with me EVERY SINGLE TIME?? It's like she thought, 'well maybe next month she'll have forgotten me.....' No way, lady!!!! Oh, why do people always think us service desk people are stupid???? Grrrrrrrrr.........

High-Maintenance & Hostile Heidi said...

I was going to say, "At least he wasn't using food stamps!" but I guess I don't know if he was or not. I'm assuming not, since the dollar store probably doesn't take food stamps.

Walmart shouldn't take perishable food back unless it's spoiled. I've bought milk at the grocery store before that was already spoiled by the time I got home, and I've thought about returning it (because I'm a chronic returner), but never did because it was too much trouble to haul back a gallon jug of spoiled milk. So I just poured it down the drain and recycled the jug because I couldn't stand the smell.

Chelsea said...

About the mayo: Wal Mart, at the least the stores I go to, do sell industrial sized mayo, relish and a few other items, so it probably was a Wal Mart item.

That's ridiculous about the guy, though. And, I think they've found that dollar store food and toothpaste and stuff isn't regulated properly or something...goodness...I never buy anything that will enter my body from a dollar store, except possibly candy and even that's rare.

Anonymous said...

Stupid poor people trying to save what little money they have...what are they thinking making you do your job like that!?!

Stephanie said...

anonymous - if they're trying to save "what little money they have" they shouldn't have bought the stuff in the first place. That's kind of the point.

Anonymous said...

stephanie-People need to eat to stay alive. The guy said he found stuff cheaper at the dollar store so thats why he is returning it. While we turn our noses up to such disgusting food some people don't have that choice. Thats kinda my point...

MavenofMoxie said...

Stupid poor people trying to save what little money they have...what are they thinking making you do your job like that!?!

LOL I like the sarcasm and I have to admit, you have me there & made a good point.

osisbs said...

Pol Pot had the right idea, he just ran out of time.

Stewart said...

"frell"
farscape?