My experience shopping at Walmart right before Christmas

The other day I went to get inside my car that I haven’t driven in a week and surprisingly everything was dead. The door would not unlock with the remote: I actually had to get the key out to get in the door. The dash panel was completely dead.

No big deal, I get jumper cables out and connect them to my other car. The dash is still completely dead which is surprising to me. I would have expected the voltage passing from the cables to be at least enough to power the car electronics.

Next, I get out my car battery tester and it indicates the battery is operating at 4 volts. We had a 6-inch snowstorm the week before, so I guess that cold weather finished the battery off. I am just surprised that a car battery would go from working perfectly at 12 volts to completely dead at 4 volts in a matter of deads.

Christmas Season Shopping Fun!

This situation meant that I would need to go out to a store 4 days before Christmas. That is unfortunate as I try to avoid these places like the plague at that time of year, but the circumstances made it necessary. So I drive out to my nearest Walmart.

You can drive your car around for 20 minutes looking for a parking spot!

I get there, and the parking lot is basically completely full. Looks like not a single spot open and people are burning gas driving in circles waiting for a spot. I drive around to the back of the store and am able to park and enter through the automotive care area, fortunately.

I walk over to the battery section and two people are sitting in a chair with their shopping care rudely blocking the whole aisle. “Excuse me,” I say and she moves her stuff. Amazing, but okay whatever. I use the computer and buy the battery I need, passing on the expensive warranty batteries because I think it is a scam to prey on people that will lose the receipts. Plus, if I recall correctly the warranties don’t refund the full price of the battery, only a lesser pro-rated amount. It seems like the house always wins on those warranties.

Now because I entered the store it creates a bit of an awkward situation. I don’t have a cart but have to carry a 40-pound battery. No big deal, I head to the front to checkout.

Does this look enjoyable to anyone?

The Madness of Crowds

To my surprise, there are zombified shoppers everywhere blocking aisles and making it almost impossible to walk through the store. I estimate that 30% of the people there just have zero basic social mindfulness. These people have their carts blocking the whole aisle. They are talking and looking at the person next to them, not remotely paying attention to how they affect others. Or they are on their cell phone not caring.

It takes me a long time to navigate through the store with a heavy battery in thick crowds of discourteous shoppers. Another observation I made is how filled some of the shopping carts are with junk. I mean, the entire cart is overloaded and the bottom rack has stuff hanging over. Is this stuff really going to create happiness? Probably not.

The other thing I really notice people watching at Walmart is how bad the obesity epidemic is getting out of control. I saw four shoppers that were so large that they needed to use scooters to shop. That is just sad, people are eating so much that they are losing their basic functional abilities and are losing their quality of life.

This all makes me wonder if there is a correlation between consuming too many material items and consuming too much food. I mean, who really goes to these stores right before Christmas if they can at all help it? Hopefully, our nation is able to address this extreme situation with a renewed focus on healthy eating and fitness.

Fortunately, I make my way towards the front and there are self-checkout aisles. A few years ago I would have been stuck in a 20-minute wait, but these aisles really keep the lines moving. Walmart is saving money on cashiers while decreasing customer wait times with self check out. That is just smart from a business perspective.

Survival

It appears I survived shopping at Walmart during the Christmas season.

I got home, threw my battery in the car, and it started right up. I was thankful I didn’t have to mess with any fuses or deal with other issues.

Now I dread having to return my old car battery for recycling to get my $15.00 battery core charge refunded. Overall the situation was very stressful and I would advise against it unless you want to observe and see signs of how crazed our society has become. It makes me appreciate being able to shop online a lot more.

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