Saturday, March 01, 2008

Wal-Mart: The Girl Scout's Final Frontier

Confession: When I was younger, I spent a lot of time and money at Wal-Mart.

The city containing my childhood home did not have a Target. I believe there might have been a Kmart. There was a store called "Hills", which was actually kind of fun to shop at because it was in the dirt mall and you could walk out into the mall when you were done and go to the airbrushed t-shirts store or "The Encounter", where you could look at dresses that Girls Who Were Better Than You wore in pageants.

But we had Wal-Mart.

And when I got to be a teenager? We had Super Wal-Mart.

On Friday nights everyone seemed to be there. You'd see everyone shopping or hanging out in the parking lot. Frankly, there wasn't much else to do.

When I moved to North Carolina, I became so disgusted with Wal-Mart that I refused to shop there. The store was always filthy and customer service was completely non-existent. When my younger sister was hugely pregnant with her first child, she and I ended up dragging this huge desk through the store, by ourselves, because not one of the fifteen employees we passed could be bothered to "assist" us in anyway.

Then I moved here and went to Wal-Mart once or twice, but frankly? There were so. many. people. I hate crowds and I especially hate crowded stores and good freaking Lord, I do not understand why people feel it is necessary to nearly mow down old people and children to get discount tube socks. There are always more. Wal-Mart is not going to run out.

But it's Girl Scout cookie time in Tennessee, and if you are going to sell Girl Scout cookies, then by God you better have a booth at the local Wal-Mart.

It was a warm, beautiful day. We set up our booth, lay out our cookies, and smiled sweetly. And the customers? They came.

It was easy, it was effortless. We sold and sold and sold. In two hours? We made $250.00.

We also? Had to deal with two police cars which came shrieking up on the curb, nearly taking out our booth in the process. And then? A large, handcuffed woman who nearly knocked over our booth as they pulled her out of the store. She very politely said, "Excuse me," and I said to the horrified Girl Scouts, "It's always important to be polite. Even if, um, you are being arrested."


And we ran out of Thin Mints and Samoas.




And next Saturday? I have to do this all again.

23 comments:

Gerbil said...

I'm sorry but the polite arrestee had me giggling like the idiot that I am.

I do not miss the wal mart cookie booth time, noooo I don't.

Morgan Leigh said...

I'm not sure where to start. That poor little girl! What a horrible situation. The police thing? Made me giggle loud. That's funny, in a sad way, at least she said "excuse me"....

D said...

Wow. Makes me glad I chose to skip the boothing with the scouts this year.

Does your Walmart have that community grant thing where they will match your sales? The do it up here, up to $1000 in sales, I think.

Katie said...

OMG, ditto Gerbil. OMG, the sweet lady being arrested.

But how heartbreaking about one of your girls. :(

anglophilefootballfanatic said...

I, like you, despise wally world. It really creeps me out, but for cookie sales? I assume it would go over big. And, I bought six boxes..all samoa & thin mints. My ever-expanding butt will not thank me for that one.

AndreAnna said...

I. Just. Can't. Do. That. Store.

The people scare me. It's like a whole subculture that is not quite human.

And how sad about that little girl? Sorry you have to do this next week.

Kimberly said...

Oh my good golly gosh...thin mints are way high up on my list of nemesis'...nemesi?

So sorry about the little girl...that must've hurt your heart a lot.

Joy T. said...

And to think I haven't had a Girl Scout cookie in YEARS because I can't find one Girl Scout who is selling them. And I'd even almost venture to...the outside...of a Walmart to get them too. But they aren't there either. The Girl Scouts in Canada must be hiding.

Christie said...

wow, I hate WalMart. my boyfriend and I have started forking over the extra 50 cents per grocery item just to avoid going there. Especially since we have a little one. No one cares if they run you down.

I was suprised that the lady apologized for almost knocking your table over. That's at least some progress

(reminds me the we were in a new grocery store the other day and people walked in front of us and all of them said sorry or exscusme. AND looked me in the eye. bizarre!)

Jenski said...

You will always run out of Samoas...Yum. If I lived there, I would totally visit you at WalMart. I definitely understand the aversion to WalMart! My friends visit from WalMartland and ask if we can go to Target. :)
I'm glad that woman could make a good bad example of herself by saying excuse me. Hopefully the little girl gets to spend quality time with you again next week.

Kelly M said...

Although I am a walmart shopper, I choose to do my shopping at 6:30AM when the store is COMPLETELY empty! I love it! I go before work. I never go during peak times because here too I think the entire community decided to shop as a group...I HATE IT!

Glad you sold so many cookies...I guess there is a plus side to walmart being so busy!

random_mommy said...

I just keep saying "It's girl scout cookie time in Tennessee!" the same way the guy says "It's football time in Tennessee!"

you're reminding me of my TN roots!

SJ said...

The Girl Scout booths are up and running at our local Wal-Marts too. And the grocery stores, and well just about everywhere I turn!

I am Trish Marie said...

I love cookie time, maybe that is because I am not the one selling them. I just eat them! And, I always have the "Cookie Time" song from Troop Beverly Hills running through my head whenever I see the cookie booths...and that makes me giggle.

Sue said...

I hate Walmart so very much. That poor girl...

Actorgirl said...

Ah, we used to have Hills, too... and before Wal-Mart and Target, it used to be 'the' store! LOL!!!

I DO miss the cookie booths (and the Thin Mints!!!) since I don't venture into Wally World, but that's actually a GOOD thing, since I don't NEED those four boxes!

Betsey Booms said...

I always find it's even more important to be polite when getting arrested.

But that's just me.

Stephanie said...

I agree with Kelly M. Wal-Mart isn't too bad if you go at a time that the idiots aren't out. In fact, it's actually kind of pleasant at 6:30am. The aisles are wide, the lights are bright, there are no screaming children, and the checkout line is really short. And? They're still cheaper than everyone else.

But if you hit our local Wal-Mart on a Sunday afternoon at 2pm? Dear God in Heaven, please just shoot me rather than making me go through that hell. Wait, that's what hell IS, I think. Wal-Mart... at 2pm... on a Sunday afternoon.

Julie said...

That poor little girl. What do you do with that information? Just awful all around.

EE said...

I'm always polite when I'm being arrested;)

bermudabluez said...

I must admit...I'm a Target girl myself....but the way you describe this Walmart excursion is absolutely hilarious...except for the poor little girl whose family was beating each other up!

Kat said...

Aaaaaah! Help!!! Girlscout cookies are everywhere! I've already eaten one and a half entire boxes of thin mints, and a box of those lemon ones, all to myself. Dude - you gotta try the lemon ones. They are SO GOOD.

Rachel said...

I shop and Wally World because it's cheaper than most other stores, but EVERY single time I go in there, I get pissed off!!!! People are soooooo damn rude!!!

That poor little girl. She shouldn't have to deal with that.