Yesterday I did something I’d never done before and to be honest I didn’t even know was possible.
At first Tammy couldn’t believe what I had done but when I produced evidence backing my story she was astonished.
She knows how many times I’ve attempted this accomplishment only to see it result in failure after failure.
But yesterday, victory was mine.
Yesterday I proved that all things are possible.
Yesterday I walked out of a Wal-Mart owned store (Sam’s Club) with only one item.
AND it was under $10.
I love me some Wal-Mart.
Journey to the Center of the Wal-Mart
Tammy knows my love for Wal-Mart runs deep.
She once even asked if I was having an affair with a Wal-Mart cashier because I made so many stops there, especially after they opened the wonderfully spacious new Super Center in town.
For me a trip to Wal-Mart is more like an exciting expedition where I never know what’s around the corner or on the next street over.
The pattern that I follow when walking through the store might even qualify as a mild form of OCD.
Stop Messing with My Head
We all know they have low prices, but I think Wal-Mart might be part of some classified mind-control experiments.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone into Wal-Mart with my list of items that I know we need only to suddenly remember additional items that we also were running low on.
I have a horrible memory. I know people say that all the time, but I really do.
It’s so bad that Tammy doesn’t even question when I tell her I don’t remember something.
I’m Here to
Question Help You
But my Wal-Mart-n’ ways aren’t always filled with rainbows and unicorns.
There have been countless times that I’ve come home hanging my head in shame when Tammy sees how many bags I’ve brought in.
Sometimes I use the diversion tactic of unloading the bags before Tammy makes it to the kitchen.
But more times than not, Tammy shows up to “help” me put the items away.
Her “help” quite often turns into an informal police interrogation.
Tammy: Why did you get this?
Me: Because we needed it.
Tammy: We needed marshmallows and a candle that smells like cookies?
Me: You know how much I love cookies and candles.
Tammy: What about this? I know we didn’t need this.
Me: It was on sale.
Tammy: (shaking her head) Just because it’s on sale doesn’t mean you have to get it.
This line of questioning usually continues until Tammy gets so frustrated that she doesn’t want to be in the kitchen anymore and leaves the rest for me to put away.
The High Cost of Wal-Mart Addiction
Then there was the day that I’ll never live down and Tammy will never forget.
We hadn’t been shopping in a while so I went to stock up.
Apparently I got a lot of stuff, so much that the cashier asked me how long it had been since I’d been shopping.
The kitchen counters and floor were littered with bags when Tammy came in and started “helping” me.
We went through the usual song and dance of questions for a few minutes when Tammy went for the kill.
Tammy: So how much was all of this?
Me: (acting like I didn’t hear her) Huh?
Tammy: How much did you spend?
Me: Ummm, I don’t wanna say.
Tammy: Just tell me.
Me: I think it was over $400.
The next thing I saw was her rummaging around on the counter looking for something. I knew what she found and when she found it.
Tammy: YOU SPENT $436??!?
I knew I was in trouble because she didn’t say anything else as she continued to put items away. I was afraid that she’d disintegrate me if I even looked in her direction.
When I finally got brave enough to sneak a peek out of the corner of my eye I realized how bad it was. Tammy was crying and she doesn’t cry very often.
It’s not as if she didn’t know about my problem.
When I’d run into a non-Wal-Mart grocery store to get milk, Tammy and Jake would often make bets about how many bags and/or items I’d come out with.
But my $400 adventure was when it really hit home.
I guess you could say that’s when I broke her because now I can come home after a $200+ visit and it doesn’t even phase her.
All That Matters is That I Did It
But that experience is also part of what made my accomplishment yesterday all the greater.
Tammy’s seen me at my worst and loved me in spite of it (or despite it).
She knows how difficult it is for me to stay focused on only one item and has seen all of my struggles and failures along the way.
It didn’t matter to her that I had spent $150 at the same Sam’s Club the night before and went back because I forgot I was out of my “Sleepy Time” medicine.
All that mattered to her was that I had done something neither of us thought possible.
Don’t give up! Don’t ever give up!
– Jimmy Valvano
People of Wal-Mart: A website dedicated entirely to The People of Wal-Mart. Hopefully I won’t find myself in any of the pictures.