I'm Goin' to...Wally World!

Sometimes people coming into the store ask for items that we either don't carry or are currently out of. When that happens, I apologize that they couldn't find their item and I try to suggest places where they might find it, if they're not willing to wait until we stock it again. If it's a common item, I'll sometimes recommend that they try the nearby Wal-Mart.

You should see some of the reactions I get. Some people react to a suggestion to try Wal-Mart with undisguised disgust. Or look at me with a look of trying to gauge when I escaped the mental ward. Or they chuckle wryly with a tone of "Yeah, when donkeys fly!"

I understand the loathing some people have for Wal-Mart, but I honestly can't say I share that loathing. As far as shopping goes, Wal-Mart fills my bill.

To be sure, Wally World* is nothing like it started out as, and if Sam Walton could come back and see what it's become, he'd probably be mad as hell. And sites like Wake Up Wal-Mart probably keep them more honest than the Wally World board of directors are willing to admit, but most of the things I buy on a regular basis I find cheaper at Wal-Mart than anywhere else. And every penny saved helps.

But I admit it, I'm a shopping whore. I'll buy from whoever's got the cheapest price. If somebody actually beats out Wal-Mart's price on something, I'm there. Especially if it's K-Mart.

Similarly, I'm not too proud to be seen shopping at a thrift store or a flea market. Hey, whoever's got it cheap, that's where I am.

*C'mon, you've heard people call it that, and probably do it yourself on a regular basis. Don't be coy...

I too shop at Wal-Mart, but I understand the objections these other people have against it. Many consider Wal-mart the single reason for the demise of the small town atmosphere that permeated the country since it's beginning. Mom and Pop shops, which are the halmark of small town life, can't compete with Wal-mart. So a lot of people I know don't shop at Wal-Mart for THAT reason. It's not a pride thing. It's not so much that they wouldn't get caught dead at such a "common" store. It's that they don't want to support big corporations, especially ones that set up shop in small town communities with lots of character and end up killing the character of the town.
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