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Let the bashing begin!

post #1 of 46
Thread Starter 
Time to revoke my bleeding heart liberal card. I went to a Wal-Mart for the first time Sunday. : I know, I know, there is a special place in hell for me, right next to the Democrats in Florida who didn't bother to go out and vote in the 2000 election.

This seems a good place to make with the excuses. Many of you know my family is one our tour of the USA for a few months. Less than three weeks into the trip and we hit a town with major Blue Laws. There was nothing open in the entire town except a mexican restaurant (which couldn't serve us a margarita, but that's a whole 'nother thread) and Wal-Mart.

I've never been to a Wal-Mart before, but now that I have I can see why and how they hook poeple in. This Wal-Mart in Southern Idaho was the Hummer SUV of stores. It was the size of Delaware, and it provided any service you could imagine, photo portrait studio, pharmacy, auto repair, pharmacy, eye exams, it had a fast food restaurant inside, a bank, a whole supermarket and then all the stuff I'd expect to find at a discount store. I walked through the craft section, big mistake, they really do have very low prices on many scrapbooking things I would normally have to wait for a 40% off coupon from Micheal's to get.

Still when we got back to the hotel, I felt the need to shower.
post #2 of 46
You went, you saw, now don't go back.
post #3 of 46
ok,.. heres the real test... Did you buy anything? truth or dare :LOL
post #4 of 46
Thread Starter 
Oh man, that's the most embarassing part. : We went in for diaper wipes, and dice. I also had in my mind I needed to get a package of thank you cards, so I'll pretend that's what I was shopping for. But really the cards could have waited. We came out with...

-Diaper wipes
-Oranges
-Yatzee, Texas Holdem Edition, which has the dice DH needed.
-Two packages of stickers for scrapbooking
-A glass for DH to have a beer in while we are at a hotel or something.
-A package of Thank You notes.

I was soo soo bad.
post #5 of 46
Well, if it makes you feel better I was there 2 days ago :

It seems they are the only place open when I have time to shop. WHy is that?? I think that is how they get you. Plus, with all the stuff inside they want to make it so you don't have to leave.

I mean, getting your serviced can be a drain on time if you have to wait. But is it a drain on time if you can do your grocery shopping, gift buying, and get a family portrait??

Yeah, they are good at sucking...you in...and just generally...
post #6 of 46
yes to the low prices, yes to having everything but

NO to their inferior quality goods & service. Lack of actual attachment to any (incl ours) community:
http://www.willthomas.net/Convergence/Weekly/China.htm

& heaven help me when in one I've always become overwhelmed by the atonal noise factor, the lighting & the sheer mountain climber mindset needed to get a bottle of shampoo (hint: don't look near the soap in that grocery section;~) AND one other item. It's like a rat research maze.

Quote:
“China is an important partner in Wal-Mart’s success”, said Scott. Since opening its first store in Shenzhen in 1996, Wal-Mart has had a fast growing retail presence in China. Additionally, for more than 20 years China has provided quality products to Wal-Mart stores around the world. Wal-Mart now has 40 stores in 20 cities around China and employs more than 20,000 associates. Last year Wal-Mart sourced US$15 billion in Chinese merchandise on direct and indirect basis for its 5,500 stores in 10 countries. China’s rapidly growing economy continues to create unprecedented opportunities for retail corporations like Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart hopes to contribute to China’s economic development. The US$ 1 million donation for establishing China Retail Research Center is an example of Wal-Mart’s long term commitment to China.
Nothing against the Chinese, but what about economic growth here? what about quality goods made here? I'd rather spend the extra buck or 5.

May be off-topic, but
I once used my husband's debit card instead of my own & was asked to wait for a supervisor to come over.
"It's for your own protection" said the woman at the counter. Talk about the wrong thing to say to me.

I'm so sick of "for my own protection" rules & fear tactics in America.

I asked if she'd already charged me. She said yes. I said well, do a return. She "can't," so I said "well, I've paid, I'm leaving, if there's a supervisor looking for me, she'll need to head toward the pkg lot, that's where I'm headed." Argh!

I especially like when, for MY own protection, the teenager at the local market "checks" my signature. The local handwriting expert brigade. OY!
(is our baby coming today or what? gotta stop ranting & raving )
post #7 of 46
Quote:
the teenager at the local market "checks" my signature
OT:
But let the teenager check your sig. Because if she doesn't, and the sigs are obviously different, she doesn't catch it, and call a manager over to look at it, you contact your credit card company, and it was a fradulant purchase, the store gets a chargeback, the teenage loses her job! And it is entirely possible that she REALLY needs that job!
post #8 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by miababy
Nothing against the Chinese, but what about economic growth here? what about quality goods made here? I'd rather spend the extra buck or 5.
And another thing, everything we import adds to the liklihood of importing "stowaways" as well: like the Asian Longhorn Beetle http://www.uvm.edu/albeetle/ which is causing the City of New York to remove lots of trees in this town. It also is scaring the maple syrup producers of the Northeast.

No predators here. But a whole new species. Just what we need.

So, hey, anyone think low prices are more important than trees? The shade they provide in a hot city? The maple syrup? The wood for our furniture? The air-cleaning?

Don't buy stuff from container stores.
post #9 of 46
there's a reason it's called the "evil empire"......
post #10 of 46
I'm worse. Not only do I go to Wal-mart once every 6 weeks or so, I buy DIAPERS there! *gasp*
My older two make the stinkiest diapers at night and if I wash them with the baby's diapers, I just can't get them smelling good unless I run them through with copious amounts of baking soda like 3 times. It's a pain in the butt. So I put them in the cheapest disposables I can find. And that's Wal-mart's brand. I've looked at stores around me like Fred Meyer and Target but I can get twice as many diapers for my dollar at Wal-mart. I usually escape with diapers and a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup or two - nothing more.
post #11 of 46
Im just waiting for the day that evil corp comes to SA. Then we're doomed...
post #12 of 46
Welcome to the Dark Side!

Seriously, I am slowly but surely weaning myself off of Wal-Mart, thanks to reading MDC!

For example, I did not shop there at all this weekend! I shopped at a local grocery store (a small local chain of three stores). I actually saved money by not shopping at Wal-Mart, contrary to al their tv commercials.

How does that happen? I bought food! I wasn't distracted (seduced?) by other non-food crap that is not on my list! I had no idea why my grocery bill was so out of control until I stopped shopping at Wal-Mart. Now, I go grocery shopping and buy GROCERIES instead of inpulse-buy crap (flip-flops, shorts on sale, make-up, etc.).
post #13 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by artgoddess
Time to revoke my bleeding heart liberal card. I went to a Wal-Mart for the first time Sunday. : I know, I know, there is a special place in hell for me, right next to the Democrats in Florida who didn't bother to go out and vote in the 2000 election.

This seems a good place to make with the excuses. Many of you know my family is one our tour of the USA for a few months. Less than three weeks into the trip and we hit a town with major Blue Laws. There was nothing open in the entire town except a mexican restaurant (which couldn't serve us a margarita, but that's a whole 'nother thread) and Wal-Mart.

I've never been to a Wal-Mart before, but now that I have I can see why and how they hook poeple in. This Wal-Mart in Southern Idaho was the Hummer SUV of stores. It was the size of Delaware, and it provided any service you could imagine, photo portrait studio, pharmacy, auto repair, pharmacy, eye exams, it had a fast food restaurant inside, a bank, a whole supermarket and then all the stuff I'd expect to find at a discount store. I walked through the craft section, big mistake, they really do have very low prices on many scrapbooking things I would normally have to wait for a 40% off coupon from Micheal's to get.

Still when we got back to the hotel, I felt the need to shower.

LOL yeah, our superwalmart has all of those things except the bank
post #14 of 46
artgoddess, IMO it's OK since you came clean here :LOL

I have been in wal-mart a handful of times in my life and I have found nothing appealing about it whatsoever. I feel very fortunate that I'm not in a position where I'm forced to shop there.

I've always felt the need to shower after leaving too!
post #15 of 46
OK - so help me here. I agree that Walmart is not the best corporation (and possibly the worst?) on the planet. I'm all for fair wages, fair labor, etc... But (and this is completely honest and serious) how do you, on a single income, afford to shop at other stores? We are not "hurting" for money, but I have a strict grocery budget that I must stick to. If I shop at the local food lion, I pay, at times, TWICE AS MUCH for the exact same items on the grocery shelves of walmart. It hurts me to think of unfair practices, but it also hurts to pay $5 for something that would cost $2.50 at walmart. Unless I cut back on our eating (and we are already vegetarians who eat very little to begin with and i cook alot from scratch), what can you do? I clip coupons (when I can find them for the items I buy!), but I haven't found anything else that could even come close to making up the difference in cost. I DO NOT buy convenience items and I don't buy anything there that isn't food except laundry detergent, dish detergent, toilet tissue, and soap/shampoo.
So, I'll confess I'm at walmart once a week. Help me find a way to stop!
post #16 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by jackson'smama
..But (and this is completely honest and serious) how do you, on a single income, afford to shop at other stores? We are not "hurting" for money, but I have a strict grocery budget that I must stick to.
Do you live in a home with a yard or in an apartment? If you have a yard or access to a community garden with individual plots, you'd be SHOCKED at how much stuff you can grow in a tiny space. I live in NYC and know lots of people who do this. I've been in some neighborhoods and seen a 10' x 20' yard with all the space that isn't the walkway CRAMMED with tomato plants and basil (usually Italian neighborhoods in Brooklyn).

I'm not kidding. That takes care of a lot of the summer/fall grocery bill. And then there's cold frames for the winter. They can be made from scavenged stuff.

Obviously, this is an impossibility for someone in an apartment with no community gardens.

But, I'm offering outside-the-box ideas...just to get started.

It isn't only about finding a better retailer...it can be about changing the question.
post #17 of 46
right now, we're in a house, but no yard to work with so we have tomatoes on the deck. i've planted a small garden at my mom's house 1.5 hours away but we've had a ground hog and rabbit problem. fortunately my squash, cukes, and peppers are surviving. adios broccoli and beans. i've put up fencing now, but it's hard to manage a garden from this distance.
we used to garden at our old house and we're planning a move soon that will also make it easier. i don't have much of a green thumb - i couldn't even get a decent tray of lettuce going this year?!?!?!
we buy all of our dairy and eggs at whole foods (organic only) and a vast portion of our produce as well b/c that's what i use to make babyfood. so walmart gets our business for the small amount of household products we buy, and the "staples" like beans, rice, flour, etc...
so, even with our unfortunate gardening problems so far, we do plan to make a dent with the produce spending, and that would free up money to shop elsewhere, but it's still hard to pay double. i know that sounds rotten and selfish, but it is hard to do.
post #18 of 46
Do you qualify for WIC. For my family size of 5, we spend about $200-250/month on all grocery items aside from WIC. I buy as much organic as I can. All tomato products, produce, rice, etc. are usually organic.
post #19 of 46
We have a health food store that is about 25-50 CENTS over Wlamart...and I'm talking organic! It is small but has some things to offer without a huge price difference.

Sometimes you can find local farmers that let you pick things for X amount a bushel or whatever. Contact a local farmers community and find out.
post #20 of 46
no we don't qualify for WIC. i spend $250 a month for 2 adults and an almost 8 month old baby! what am i doing wrong????? Please help me. I know this is probably crossing over somewhat to the frugality board, but hopefully it won't get moved b/c this has so much to do with NFL. i am new to NFL and I want my family to move in that direction very badly b/c those are the values i want my son and future children to have. i live in a "gated community" (don't worry...we're moving). we moved here b/c of my job and it was actually the cheapest housing in the county. this county has NO TRAFFIC lights - so you'd think rural=cheaper. very untrue. the community is mostly northern retirees who apparently have all the money in the world plus we are 30 minutes away from a city, so the one grocery store has the monopoly. i do my grocery shopping in my hometown when i visit my mom (1.5 hours away). there are two grocery stores in that town, one being walmart. i've been to several surrounding towns and cities and haven't found a store/farmer's market that offers pricing (the dollar amount paid for the product, not the actual "cost" of production) even close to walmart.
i do try to buy the local produce that walmart carries and i buy whatever organic stuff they sell.
so, any advice you can send my way to become more NFL - particularly in the food/grocery category is greatly appreciated.
i read elsewhere about buying from thrift stores, ebay etc...for other items. e.g. clothing. so i have another question. if you buy GAP second hand, is that considered OK? just curious...
thanks to anyone who can send me in the right direction!
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