Why is WalMart such a dump? I hate to be elitist, but I really can’t stand that store. It’s one part white trash, one part ghetto. It’s as if the only thing they have going for them is cheap prices.
Sadly, the merchandise isn’t worth the slashed prices. We were in the store yesterday to pick up a fridge for a friend, and we swung through the furniture section, always watching for cheap shelving. The shelves were definitely cheap. Probably half the price of other retailers, but they looked like crap. I’m used to buying crappy furniture. My bed (mattress on a frame) and my coffee table are the only pieces of furniture I bought from a real furniture store. Everything else is low-budget stuff, but it looks like gold compared to what WalMart sells.
In addition to their lack of quality, the store is a mess. The shelving goes higher than is probably practical, giving you a boxed in feeling like everything’s going to come crashing down. They also keep you from seeing what limited signage they have to help you find what you need. Every aisle is jammed with extra sale items sticking out in the middle of the floor that just create traffic.
Barbara Ehrenreich talked about how awful it was to work at WalMart in her book Nickel and Dimed, and now I can see why. The place is a circus. Whatever money I can save thanks to WalMart’s price rollback isn’t worth the trauma my spirit suffers simply walking in the door.
Maybe I’m just an elitist jerk (though that doesn’t seem likely when I’m unemployed and poor), but I’d prefer to do my shopping in a clean, well-organized, manageable store. I want to find what I need easily and not feel like I’m running an obstacle course. I need deodorant, not a headache.