Thursday, July 3, 2008

Why I Hate Wally World

Okay, I don't mean the vacation spot from the Chevy Chase movie either. Hot Tub Lizzy inspired me with her Raggin' Wednesday post to share with every one why I hate the retail giant.

Picture it: Greenville, 2005. I, one week after giving birth to my third child and having a tubal ligation, was hosting Thanksgiving at my house. I had run out of flour for the pies I was baking and decided to run myself to get some more. I slipped on a shirt that I bought the night before , grabbed my overcoat, my keys, and ran out the door.

I entered the doors and went to get flour. I looked at the Christmas decorations (because a girl can never have too many) and then went to get in line. There was only one person in line in front of me, and an assistant manager at the end of the register. She kept looking at me. I thought it was because she noticed that I had the baby. (Yes, they see my that frequently.) A man got in line behind me just as the line next to us became empty. I mentioned to him that the next register had no one if he wanted to go over there. Because he was behind me, I couldn't have moved. He said he would just stay in line where he was. He didn't mind waiting. Who doesn't mind waiting.

I am looking around waiting on the person with three thousand dollars worth of groceries in front of me to pay. A uniformed police officer walks up and starts talking to the man in line behind me. The assistant manager leaves her post at my register and takes the police officer into the clothes section.

I paid for my stuff and stopped to fill my icee cup on the way out. A little girl walks up to me and tells me I have a sticker on my shirt. I look down to see a size sticker on the shirt. I simply just pulled the sticker off and threw it into the trash. As I turned to walk away, I hear "Ma'am, I need you to come with me." I threw a glimpse over my shoulder and see the police officer standing there looking at me. "Me?" "Yes. You." I walk over to him and he says, "We are conducting a survey to see how your shopping experience went today." This is how the conversation goes.

Me: Are you kidding me? Is this because I had a size sticker on my shirt?

Him: You had a size sticker on your shirt?

Me: Yes. And you know that I did because you are having this conversation with me right now.

Him (to asst mgr): Is this the one?

Her: Yea.

Me: I bought this shirt last night at Store #2. I just threw it on real quickly to come get some flour. I have the receipt at home if you want my husband to bring it. Besides, you don't even sell this brand of clothes.

Asst. Mgr (looking at tag inside of shirt): Yes, we do.

Me: Of course you do.

So they drag me into the security room. Well not really drag b/c I reluctantly followed them. But unfortunately for me, all of the managers on duty at the time didn't know how to operate the security cameras. So I have to sit there and wait for them to call in a manager that can operate them. They repeatedly deny my request to have my husband bring the receipt. So for 20 minutes the police officer and I sit in the room by ourselves.

Him: I don't think you stole the shirt. You didn't look like you had done anything wrong.

Me: That's because I didn't.

Him: Well, they tracked me down. I was in the store shopping and they flagged me down and said they had a shoplifter.

Me: Well, they were wrong.

20 minutes later:

A third assistant manager arrives to get the security camera that focuses on the dressing room, because apparently they think this is the only place in the store that someone can change into a shirt they want to steal. After another ten minutes of watching the dressing room footage, I VERY POLITELY (ha!) request that they look at the front door footage and see what I was wearing when I came in. By the time they pinpoint my entrance, a full hour has passed and I am a crying, emotional wreck. Four people from my church entered the doors as I was being escorted into the security room.

Him:(After viewing the video footage of me wearing my purple sweater when I entered the doors) You are free to go.

Me: Well, it is about time.

Him: Do you want me to walk you out?

Me: Well Wal-Mart probably does because they don't want some crazed shoplifter on the loose in their store. Besides, you probably need to make sure that I don't pick something up on my way out.

Well, Joe Officer begged me all the way to my car not to be mad at him. He was just doing his job and he knew from the beginning that I did nothing wrong. Besides the asst mgr couldn't even find a sweater similar to it in their store. That's because it didn't come from there.

Skip forward a few days to a meeting with the store manager. He was aware of the situation as told by guilty assistant manager.

Me: I have one question. Do you carry X brand of clothing?

Mgr: No. We never have.

Me: Then your asst mgr lied to cover her ass. She knew she was going to look stupid in front of the police officer, so she blatantly lied.

Mgr: She didn't tell me that she looked at the tag in your clothes.

Me: That's because she didn't want to feel stupid. I just wonder how many other times this has happened in your store.

Mgr: None to my knowledge.

Me: Then why did not one of the four asst mgrs involved feel the need to apologize for wrongly accusing me of shoplifting?

Mgr: I really am sorry that this happened.

Me: Well, I will no longer be shopping here. I will drive 1 hr to shop at another store.

Well, I didn't shop at another store. I decided I wasn't going to let Dumb and Dumbers run me out of this store. So I continued to shop there while they continued to follow me through the store for about a year. Guess what? They never caught me shoplifting--BECAUSE I DON'T!!!! Ask my husband about how much money Wal-Mart gets from us. Maybe I should start shoplifting. And that stupid asst mgr still won't look me in the eye, three years later.


Anonymous said...

Wow! I can't believe how wrong they handled everything....especially keeping you in there for AN HOUR and not letting you call your husband. And then they didn't even carry that BRAND!!! Ooooh....I would have been so pissed....

Anonymous said...

OMG and you STILL shop there! NO WAY MAN...then again, it's easier for me to say that, there is a stinkin' Wally World on every corner here, but thank the dear Lord above there are also Target's too!

Angela said...

That is unbelievable! If I were you, I would make it a point to go up to that asst manager every shopping trip, look her in the eye, and smile. Man alive!

Rph Mommy said...

OMG. There are so many things wrong with that situation. So many people should have been fired for that. You poor thing.