Friday, June 8, 2007

Everybody here is a member of the Walmart Parking Lot Social Club

Thanks to Joe Nichols for the lyric, from the song "Walmart Parking Lot". No really, it is.

I never really thought much about Walmart before moving here. Every town in the south seems to have one, but I didn't do a whole lot of shopping there. I'm more of a Target girl, honestly. It seems, though, that I was missing out, because Walmart is an absolute microcosm of whatever town it's in, and you can learn a lot about your small town simply by hanging out at the local Walmart.

First of all, I've learned that everybody, and I mean everybody in Rincon, and the surrounding towns shops at our local Walmart. Why? Well, because aside from the Kroger south of town, and a Food Lion, it's the only place to shop, especially if you need more than groceries. Every time I've been to this one, it's always jam packed. I've always had to wait in line, and the aisles are crammed with people, no matter what the hour, no matter what the day. Sundays after church are probably the worst, and I'll explain more about that in a minute.

Secondly, everybody seems to be related to everyone else. Case in point, Sunday after church, walking down an aisle trying to get bread, and there is a family reunion going on in front of the hot dog buns. Never mind that they all just saw each other a half an hour ago, sitting in the pew across from them. No, it's like they haven't seen each other for years. "Well, Jessie Mae, how are you! How's your Mama and Daddy? Didn't see them this morning at Sunday school. Oh, they were there? Well, my eyes must just be going. You grillin' out today?" And so on. Ten people, all related, and all probably going to see each other again for evening church, hanging out in the bread aisle.

Thirdly, you can wear whatever the hell you want to Walmart. Not long after we got to town, our little family took a shopping trip. We were walking in, and walking out was a woman in pajama pants and bunny slippers. At 2:30 in the afternoon. The four-year-old looks at me and says "How come I can't wear my jammies to the store?" I told her she could when she was older, and I didn't have to be seen in public with her anymore. Also, t-shirts with almost witty saying are very popular here as well. For instance, I saw a man wearing a "Smart Ass University" t-shirt one afternoon as I was browsing for toilet bowl cleaner. I saw the same shirt on a different guy the following week, except he was wearing a John Deere cap, and had his little ones in tow. The best one was probably the two women who were wearing bathing suits (one had on a Confederate Flag bikini) with cover-ups while shopping for beer. The cover-ups, unfortunately, weren't covering up all that much.

The truth is, I think I'm jealous. All of my family live far away, so there's no chance of me and our six shopping carts ever having a reunion in the bread aisle. And I only wish I was bold enough or didn't care enough to wear a bathing suit or pajamas to go shopping (maybe a bikini AND bunny slippers, there's a thought). The good news is, if I ever get up the guts to do it, I can buy the t-shirt, the slippers, the bathing suit, and a John Deere cap at my local Walmart. I'll post pictures when I do.


auntie barbie said...

ok, the scenerio you described could be the local Meijer here and for all the same reasons, with all the same conversations and people. Maybe its their relatives that have migrated north.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jen...I always thought John Deere paraphernalia was a Canadian thing; I guess I'm just as lost in the woods in some way, and down South these things we take for granted here are considered "cool" down there. My Dad has a John Deere hat...he's cool, but he'd be cool anywhere because he's so social and fun. As for shopping in the buff, Dad, me, my family, my friends, and all the Canuckies I can fit in Lake Ontario wouldn't have the interest/gall to consider that "cool", but then again I still think mukluks are "cool"...

Anonymous said...

Jen! When you are ready for those bunny slippers, check out!

Domestic_Diva said...

LOL!! So true so true. Check my post out on Walmart parking lot rage. lol