Cue Saturday afternoon, just about 4:30 p.m. The line at Customer Service is starting to back up because the afternoon recreational shoppers are coming in early to escape the heat. I'm returning a pile of children's clothes for a woman who bought stuff for her grandkids and it was all the wrong size.
In the midst of all this, a fat housewife type comes up and asks me "Can I get some help at the jewelry counter?" I tell her I can page for assistance, but that I can't leave Customer Service, especially because I have people waiting in line.
Her answer? "Well, they called 20 minutes ago and no one came. I want to buy something and no one will sell it to me. Is this how you operate your store?" My question is - "Why are you still here? Nothing we sell in jewelry is that nice or that special. Nothing.
"Ma'am, you can talk to the customer service supervisor on duty or I can call again for assistance."
And that opens up a tirade from her.
"I don't know why I even came here. My daughter told me this store was always dirty and disorganized. We always go to the other Wal-Mart and it is so much nicer and cleaner. Why is your store always dirty? Why can't I get help? That new Wal-Mart across town is a nice place to shop." Again, my question is - "Why are you here instead of there? Do you drive nails into your arm in your spare time? Is kidney dialysis your idea of a recreational sport?
To top it all off, she throws her hands up, looks at the line of people waiting on me to finish dealing with her so they can just return some more broken plastic crap and goes "I don't know why I even came here today."
I guess she expected something different from Wal-Mart, like maybe good service. I mean, really, this is the Wal-Mart. Don't get your hopes up.
But she sure as hell rolled by later with a packed buggy. I guess she got over it long enough to spend some money. Thus proving Wal-Mart's lowest common denominator marketing strategy of "Always Low Prices" to be a perfect draw.
I have said it before, and I will say it again - "If your Wal-Mart shopping experience is bad, don't come back. They're not going to change if you don't." But if you kick up a fuss, yell and scream for a manager and get a gift card - TO WAL-MART, MIND YOU - but still roll right out the dor with $200 worth of cheap plastic crap and Chinese poison in your food, who really won that argument?
Yeah, you sure "showed them who was boss," didn't you? You are gonna go brag about cursing out a Wal-mart manager at your church and your Dairy Queen and in your hair salon. All your friends are going to agree with you and say "Yes, girl, that store is a disgrace. I can't never get no help. Don't nobody speak no English."
Everybody down at Shenida's House of Style getting a weave or having their nails "did" is going to agree and you're all going to talk about how filthy the bathrooms are and how nasty the store is.
And on Saturday, you and your baby-daddy and your grandma and your auntie and your kids and your sister and your sister's kids and maybe your sister's lazy, good-for-nothing man are all going to pile into the car and come into Wal-Mart and spend some more money.
Who is winning? You? Or Wal-Mart?