I live in a melting pot of different lifestyles, religions, backgrounds, etc. And apparently, ALL of them shop at Wal-Mart. Unfortunately for some of them, so do the “evangelical Christians” who have taken it upon themselves to minister to the heathens, and feel as though they have the right to do so in as rude and obnoxious a manner as they please.
I was raised by a Baptist mother who was intolerant of homosexuality, and because of this, I am raising my son to appreciate, respect, and love everyone, regardless of race, color, creed, and sexual orientation.
One day, while we were shopping for school clothes for my then 8-year old son, we were arguing about some clothes that I picked out for him. I thought they were cute, and he said they were too “baby-looking.” We were approached by a semi-flamboyant gay man who was also shopping with a small child, and he and I struck up a friendly conversation about boys and their taste in clothes as they get older, while the kids looked for things on the racks around us. My son picked up a shirt and said, “What about this one?” The man said, “That looks really nice. You have good taste!” We chatted for another minute, and then he and his child went on their way.
After they were out of earshot, a Pentecostal woman (I could tell her denomination by her long hair, long skirt, lack of jewelry or makeup, and the scowl on her face) walked up and said, “I wouldn’t buy ANYTHING for my child that was suggested by one of THOSE people.”
“Excuse me?” I said, immediately getting angry.
“It’s people like you, who are tolerant of those abominations, that will send this country straight to hell!” she replied.
I was at a loss for words, so incensed was I at this ignorance and hatred, trying to come up with something to say to get my point across without setting a bad example for my son. But my little boy, without missing a beat, says, “Ma’am, I’m sorry, but hating people for no reason will send you to hell faster than my mom being nice and talking to that nice man.”
The woman couldn’t really say anything after that, whether from embarrassment or anger I couldn’t tell. So I picked up my son, gave him a big kiss, and said to her, “Unless you come to Him like this little child, you shall not enter the kingdom of Heaven.” I know it wasn’t an exact quote, but I didn’t care. As I walked away, I said to my son, “Love, 1, Hate, 0.” And he high-fived me.
I worked for Wal-Mart a few years ago as a Loss Prevention associate. For those of you who don’t know what that is, basically I was a plain clothed security guard at the store. My primary job was to catch shoplifters but I also caught employees stealing too. At our store we had a place where all of the shelves, pegs, hooks and other items that make up an aisle are stored. This was called the fixture room. I started to notice discarded wrappers and open packages in the fixture room. This made me suspicious that an associate was stealing and getting rid of the evidence in there. So I decided to hang a small camera to try and catch them. A few days later I was reviewing the footage when I recognized an employee, a 3rd shift stock man, walking into the fixture room. He looks around for a minute and then proceeds to pull his penis out and began masturbating wildly. He continues to play with himself for a minute or two and then discharges all over some shelves that were stacked in the floor. I immediately showed the recording to the store manager who looked very upset. Feeling like my job had been done, I decided to let the store manager handle this since it was not really an issue of theft. A few days later I came in early one morning to see that same guy clocking out and going home like nothing was wrong in the world. When I asked the store manager why he had not fired him, he told me how the stock guy explained that he had come to work after he had been drinking a while and was still pretty buzzed. He did not remember doing it and was sorry that it happened. He came in on his own time to clean every shelf and promised not to do it again. The store manager also added that he was the best employee that he had on 3rd shift and that it would be hard to replace him. Since no one was hurt and nothing was stolen or damaged. He figured no harm no foul.
My brother had a lot of great stories he would share with us about some of the stuff he would witness at Walmart while working there as a teen. One of these stories involved three elderly people who would regularly sit at the bench in front of the cash registers and make fun of customers who were checking out. My brother said that it was quite embarrasing because they were not discreet about it at all (I guess they had hearing difficulty). For instance, one time he was checking out a rather large customer and her rather large young son when one of them yells out to the other “Look at that fat kid and his fat mother.” My brother said they went on and on about how fat they were, and how much junk food they must eat, even going as far as to scrutinize all of their purchases. The lady just kept getting redder and redder. My brother couldn’t look her in the eye during the whole purchase. A few weeks after that incident my brother realized that his three regular “critiques” weren’t around anymore. He later found out that same day by his manager that they had been sneaking out of the local nursing home home each morning and hanging out at Walmart until finally one of their caretakers found out.
I was school shopping late one night, just getting some binders and pencils, when a hispanic guy with a Terminix shirt on, a moustache, and a very generic and traditional hispanic name and also a seemingly nice guy walked up to me. Now, I play college baseball in a small town. We have a great reputation with our town and I was wearing one of my baseball hoodies. So I didnt find anything unusual when he pulled up behind me with his cart in line said hey and asked how the season is, and how I thought that we were going to do this year. Nothing unusual so far. I had four binders, a packet of pencils and notebook paper and I had them stacked up in my arms. I’m a fairly tall guy about 6’3″ and I am somewhat lanky, definitely not a meathead. He said, “I can see you have big muscles and everything, but you can put your stuff in my cart. I can’t have a good looking guy like you getting all tired and sweaty from carrying all of that stuff…” and smiling at me. I laughed a little because it weirded me out, and told him I was fine it was no big deal, turned around and kept waiting in line. He then asked me “So I bet you get a lot of girls, being a strapping young and good looking guy.” Ok, a little freaked out here, but still not too terrible. I answered back, “Yeah, but just about as much as the next guy.” He still smiled at me and then asked me “Hey man, are you sure you don’t wanna put your stuff in my cart? I really dont mind” I told him no and turned around. I kept wondering why the heck he wanted me to do so. But I turned around and just ignored him. Then I felt something hit my butt, he was pushing his cart onto me I turned around and he was checking me out. I am straight and this really freaked me out so I turned around and said “You know what? I forgot my highlighters, I’ll see ya later man,” and I walked off. As I get about 50 feet away, he yells “Alrighty Will, I’ll catch ya later man! Ill save you a spot if you want me to!?” OK, I hauled ass out of there because I never told him my name. I had to walk around a little bit so I wouldnt catch him again. But I never saw him again so no more late night trips to Walmart for me…