We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Walmart is a cheap, nasty store. Everything I have ever bought there (every two or three years I tell myself that I should try it again, lured by one or two loss leader prices) has been shoddy, broken or worn out almost immediately. Every single sale item advertised that I have gone in search of has been sold out upon my arrival. Bait and switch. I have never been given knowledgeable or especially friendly service, despite my being warm and polite to the staff (who look frazzled). It is so big that you take an hour to find a couple of things. It's like grocery shopping at ShopRite--both places are vast, promise huge bargains, but lack certain essentials. Both places make constant mistakes at the register in the stores' favor (so you have to watch each item like a hawk...With three reasonably well behaved offspring now I can do so, but pity the single mother with four scampering munchkins. How's she supposed to monitor the :"malfunctioning" scanners?
Women, at least, don't just go shopping looking for the cheapest prices. They also look for quality, want somebody trustworthy and helpful to point them towards what they are looking for, and they particularly like to shop somewhere where they will bump into their friends and can exchange greetings over the cauliflower or game display. You can do none of these at Walmart or Shoprite. You come away not sure whether the clientele or the management are more of a threat to your wallet.
If, like me, you cannot afford your local downtown prices (and in my town, everyone is trying to pay crooked out of town landlords so only overpriced chain stores are there), here are my recommendations: Patronize human-scale chains like Trader Joe's, buy the loss leaders at your friendly neighborhood small grocery store to catch up on neighborhood gossip, go to Costco for good quality middle of the road basics and courteous staff--the glasses are amazing!--go to Target for cheap stuff for teenagers and miscellaneous household stuff (friendly staff are key here, and cute things despite the low prices). There is absolutely nothing you can get at WalMart that you can't get just as cheaply somewhere else.
And don't call me a snob. Low-income people (and I have been one at least half my life) care far more about quality than rich jerks contemplating investing in Walmart. They have less money to waste.
I may go back to Walmart in another three years, if I can stomach it. Stores occasionally improve.