Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Waitin' at the Walmart

On Sunday, one of our party had to accept that the ear pain was indeed a symptom of an ear infection. Off the two of us went to the nearest urgent care clinic, a place a solid half hour or more away.

A few hours later, maybe an hour longer than the advertised two-hour wait, we migrated to the nearest pharmacy, the one at the local Walmart, to fill a prescription for ear drops.

Another hour later, and we were out of there.

Today, after two days of fever and chills and no real progress, back to the clinic we went. The wait time was supposed to be an hour, and we actually finished in less. The properly embarrassed doctor prescribed ingestible antibiotics and some pain pills, and then we headed to the Walmart.

The pharmacy there claimed a max of an hour wait time.

We were there nearly two hours, during the bulk of which the other person stretched out in the van and I waited on the pharmacy's bench.

I've learned several lessons from my extensive Walmart stay:

People of Walmart doesn't have to set up photo ops. They happen all the time. In our first visit, we saw one of the creepiest men I've ever seen in person, a guy who (to borrow a line) made Men In Black look like a documentary. Today, I watched a woman pull her enormous and slinky left breast through the armpit hole in her tank top so she could scratch the nipple, all while browsing antibiotic creams.

I'll be squeegeeing my third eye clean for a while after that one.

Never trust a time estimate you get in a Walmart. Whether it's a pharmacy clerk or a check-out person, you simply cannot put any faith in any time estimate they give. I suppose that's fair, given what Walmart pays its workers, but, damn, it sure is frustrating.

People buy a lot in Walmart. I asked a greeter, a woman who didn't look a day over 105, if they had any small baskets for shoppers, because I was picking up only a few things. Her response: "Nope. People here need carts for all they buy." Indeed they do.

You can't fairly stereotype the Walmart clientele. It would be easy to say that in this small southern beach town all the shoppers were rednecks, but it would also be wrong. I saw people of every size, shape, race, and dress style. Everyone seems to end up there eventually.

I don't want to shop at Walmart again anytime soon. Aside from employing business practices I strongly dislike, Walmart also simply proved again today that it's not the place for me.

Now, back to that squeegeeing.


J. Griffin Barber said...

Ocular herpes, anyone? Things you see and are never rid of? Glad I didn't see it; would have put me off boobs, for like five seconds.

Todd said...



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