Employees Share The Most Walmart Thing They've Ever Seen
If you've been around the internet any time since the mid 2000s you're probably familiar with the often shocking and amusing antics of Walmart's customers. As a former retail employee I can confirm that these types of situations certainly aren't exclusive to Walmart (try working overnights in a rural gas station for a year), but the stores do seem to attract more than their fair share of the bizarre.
Reddit user Skyliner360 asked:
Some of the responses took me right back to my cashier days, and some of them made me cringe inwardly in sympathy for the employees that dealt with the situation. None of them, though, were boring.
50. Givin' On UpGiphy
I quit going there 10 years ago because I don't think the majority of employees are even qualified to answer this question. They're one in the same as the customers.
49. Too Many And Too Long
Today, I had 5 too many terrible customers in just 2 days. Well, one wasn't mine luckily. Bit of background info, I live in a small town that's known for stay cold. Our summer have never gotten above 80F, until this week. We hit 110F. Also, I work specifically in the garden center, where it got around 115F and high humidity in there.
First, I clock on and go straight to the garden center. As soon as I step in (literally), a man came storming at me. Asked if I work there and if I know how to water the plants. I said yes, of course. And he just went off. Called me every name you could think of
This went on for about 15 minutes. I was in tears at this point. I tried to explain that they can't be watered when they're in the blazing sun (at 2 pm), because the plants would burn up. Then, another associate showed up and said he had watered them just 30 minutes ago. He didn't believe her since they were "bone dry". Guess he didn't realize how hot it is, or how wet things dry up in the heat. The worst part was when I tried calling for a manager, he slapped the phone out of my hand, grabbed my arm, and pulled me from the phone. The other associate got between us, and tried to calm him down. The store, co, and asset managers showed up, and I'm not sure what happened after that. The co manager took me and the other associate away.
Honestly, it was the scariest thing. Looking back, I can't help but be amazed that all of this was over some dry dirt.
The rest will be much shorter! But about 2 hours later, a man told me he wanted to wring my neck, because we were sold out of a/c's. I only said "I'm sorry sir, I'm not the one who orders them." He eventually went on his way, but kept glaring. I think this heat is making people f*cking crazy, cause I couldn't believe I had those 2 at the same time. We had a truck load of a/c's one morning, and they all sold by the end of the day. Not my fault he didn't plan ahead for the heat, and waited last minute
The next day I was zoning and stocking back to school (unfortunately this new girl got suckered into joining the BTS team), and a woman yelled at me to get out of her way. When I looked around, the isle was empty. She had enough room to move around me, but she refused. She absolutely had to go straight. So I figured she wanted what was in front of me. I apologized and moved. She went right by, and muttered "useless b*tch". I've experienced this behavior a few times while stocking. I don't understand it. I guess they don't want their products on the shelves to buy? I dunno.
I was taking cardboard to the back room baler, and our recycle cart bin thing is really loud when pushing it. A teen was on the phone, and as I went by, he told me to be quiet and that I was annoying. Right, I forgot to put the silencer on the wheels, sorry! Later on I caught him ripping open packages in the toy section, and then he decided to remove all the boxed up furniture and fill up the isle with them. Not to mention repeatedly pressing the "assistance needed" button at the fish tank.
This was a double wammy, and it involved 2 other associates and my older brother (who works there also). So "N" and I were heading to the back room to clock off, walking past electronics. I heard her say "Sir, you can't be in there". When I looked, a guy had broken the lock on one of our cupboards that holds laptops and accessories. He acted like he didn't hear her and she repeated herself. He replied back "Well no one was here to help, so I did it myself." Another customer was there with his sons, and he said something like "everyone's looking at me like I'm a lion". We thought they were together, so we were a bit nervous. Plus we're both new. My brother showed up and we explained what happened, he went off to find a manager.
Then "R" came out with something for the man and his kids. The man explained that she told the other customer she would be right with him. She was gone for only a couple minutes. We had to leave after getting a manager, and 3 managers ended up talking with him. Not sure what happened, but pretty annoying. After clocking off, my brother and I wanted to buy gatorade. Being late at night, only lane 12 was open, and it was long. So we went to electronics to pay. The man and his sons were still there. He was getting mad, because the item he wanted wasn't in the system yet. He kept talking to his sons in a passive aggressive manner "I know you're tired and want to go home. You had a long hard day. We'll go soon." It wasn't the nice fatherly ton either. Then started saying "If I pass out while driving and kill us, it's her fault." Blaming "R". After he left and we paid, she looked like she was about to cry. I felt so awful for her.
48. Brrr. It's Cold In Here
While working at Walmart in June/July had a big guy who was cashing out complain it was too hot in here and we need to turn the AC on.. AC was on and why the f*ck does it matter? You are leaving?
Had another customer get mad at me for not being "cheery" enough.. I was in the middle of a full blown panic attack and was hyperventilating.. customers behind her were looking at me concerned.. here general b*tchiness at me not smiling at her made me so stressed I fainted.. when I came to she laughed to her friend about it then proceeded to tell me I was a horrible employee and was going to report me to my manager meanwhile the customers behind her had come to where I was to help me and my manager ran up finished the order and told her to leave immediately.. I quit after that incident.. retail and social anxiety don't mix.
47. As Per My Pricetag
I work at a Walmart in Lubbock. This is an every day occurrence. Here you go:
Them: How much is this item?
LOOKS AT THE PRICE TAG UNDER THE ITEM
/boy idk lady how much is it/
"Its [price on the tag] dollars."
46. Tiny Bananas
i worked at a walmart once as a donut maker. sometimes i'd see my old PE teacher in there, and one day they had these tiny tiny bananas... size of your thumb. i called him over and pointed them out. we were stumped.
45. A Water War
This did not take place in a Walmart, nor am I an employee of where the event took place but gonna tell my tell anyway.
This just happened two days ago. I am in Philadelphia for work. Never been here before, and have a day to kill. A friend recommends I go to the Mutter Museum.
At the museum, I end up next to this couple. We are moving at the same pace through the exhibits. They are annoying, but slightly funny in their.......dunno...I'm not sure what to call it. I wanna say stupidity, but that's not right. They were middle aged, obviously married for a LONG time.
And they were in their own world. Talking very loudly to each other, and seemed confused by everything...and asking each other what things were and what this and that meant.....it was odd. Stupid is not the right word....hard to describe...They just seemed to be completely unaware that there was other people around them.
Anyway, at some point the lady takes a water bottle out and takes a drink. (Food and Drink not allowed). A museum employee walks up and tells the lady that she cannot drink that here.
The lady looks at the employee with a bewildered look on her face and gives a little cough. The husband says to his wife "Well, I guess you have to die of dehydration then" and the wife starts coughing. Not alot, just sorta small coughs, like she has something in her throat. And over dramatically rubbing her throat.
She puts the water way, but they are still mumbling about not being able to drink the water, and the lady says sorta loudly, "I didn't even wanna drink it....I just have low blood sugar."
Sorry, that story was pretty anti-climatic. But it just happened and I wanted to share.
As it was happening I kept thinking....why not just apologize and put the water away. They spent like 5 minutes with this little routine drawing WAY more attention to themselves that if they had just stopped.
Thanks for reading. :)
44. Ol' Wallyworld
Just had to make an account to put in my stories. Couldnt resist.
Worked for ol wallyworld for 4 months now. Within my first month i had already witnessed horrors.
First occurrence: walking out to break after unloading a fairly large (2500+ pieces) truck. Hour late for break so i genuinely had no patience for anything or anyone until i get my smokes in. Look over along with all of my coworkers to see a pea soup looking crap pile sitting on the foor near apparel. Pretended i never saw it and walked away.
One more for good measure #2: walk into work, ambulances with lights on outside. Some guy od'd on heroin in the back bathroom and crapped everywhere, laying in his own filth until he was found. Management told us not to talk about it. We rebelled and changed the walmart song up a little and sung it. "I hate walmart yes i do! People do heroin in our bathroom!" management wouldn't even give us the time of day for a week.
43. A Club Of Sam
Late to the party, but I have a few. Literally. 22 jobs.
A) Ex coworker in Produce never worked. Ever, but (of course) made more than enough work for his coworkers. At times, I had like 4 S carts AND 3 flat bed carts of "damages" that I had to then spend an hour and a half disposing in the "compost bin" (basically just one of those big dumpsters with the flip top lids). Bees loved me when I got to the rotten fruit. Delicious getting that all over yourself, lemme tell ya. When I got my tattoo on my forearm, I just started wearing the white jackets that people in meat wear.
B) Same coworker literally could never get fired. Verbally harassed me and got to keep his job even after his third (And final) verbal warning.
I was getting pavestone for a guest and his wife when he went to go help me lift the at least 5-10 lb stones (they were on a pallet on the ground, so you needed to bend over to get it, while trying not to smack your head on the metal shelf above the pallet). What did his wife do? Stopped him and said, "she can get it."
I was in college and some brilliant woman had decided to try on bikini bottoms. At the worst possible time of the month. She left the bottoms in the fitting room. She totally knew better, too. I had to defect the bikini bottoms at guest services and get someone to over ride the color it went (it went green and green goes to goodwill). That nastiness needed to be tossed in the damn trash. NASTY!
Used to work at Walmart and my dad still does as an assistant manager. He had a woman who would come in frequently and try to use expired coupons or just generally give the cashiers a hard time and would ask for a member of management. Out of like 12 assistance managers, 10 of them were male. She would whip her breast out and start to breast feed her kid to fluster them and get what she wanted.. until my dad was the one who had to deal with her. My dad couldn't give a f*ck less about some woman's breast so whenever she would come in, they'd just call for my dad. She stopped coming and my dad transferred stores. My dad got a call for him at his new store one day and low and behold, it was the breast lady. She still tries her best with him.
41. Every Single Day
Former Walmart employee here. I used to work in layaway when it was still a year round thing. We had a woman who no joke came in everyday. She used one of those motorized scooters even though we had all seen her walking just fine. Anyway, she would come into the store and be there for hours filling up her basket. Inevitably she would eventually make her way back to the layaway department and put everything on layaway, several times over a thousand dollars worth of merchandise.
We always treated it like a normal transaction, but we never put the boxes up in the back room. The reason was that within the hour she would come back and cancel the order, claiming she needed money for a cab home. She did this EVERY. DAY. Without fail. I worked there for 3 years and I do not remember a day she did not come in and attempt to put items on layaway and in all that time she never had the items on layaway for more than an hour.
40. A Sock ConflictGiphy
A man came in and asked me what time we close. I told him we were a 24 hour store and never closed. He then proceeded to tell me that the night before he came up and that the doors were locked and he couldn't get in but he could see people inside. He asked why the doors were locked if we don't close. I had to explain we only left the grocery side doors open after 10 due to the fact that we had a limited number of staff past 10. If was only after he left that I realized there is a sign on the doors after they are locked letting customers know that only the grocery side doors are operational after 10 pm. I still don't have the answer to that one.
I had put in my notice that I would be quitting at it was my last day on the job. A woman came through my line with several clearanced items. As I was ringing them up I rang up a package of socks. They rang up full price (they weren't on sale so I thought nothing of it). She informed me I rang them up wrong and I began trying to explain they weren't on sale, only specific socks were on sale. She demanded I call a manger. When my CSM arrived the woman became belligerent and insisted she would prove us wrong. She stormed off and in the mean time my CSM called our security officer. Before he arrived the woman returned, with an entire bin of clearance socks. She showed my CSM the sign on them and my CSM began trying to show her the difference in the two packages. The woman then threw. And I mean literally lobbed, the whole bin of socks at me while screaming that I was a little b*tch and I should have just rang the Socks up right in the first place. (Side note: my CSM was very sweet and had the lady not became so irate she probably would have gotten the socks she wanted for discount just as a courtesy but her behavior prevents her from receiving any sort of nicety)
Couple of years ago this guy would drive around on a motorized shopping cart every day and sing purple rain to me because according to him I looked like prince. He would go to Walmart everyday around the same time and just drive around the aisles. Wouldn't buy anything.
38. The Trouble With TV
My grandma works in the money center at her Walmart. She told me she has a customer that looked really familiar, but she couldn't figure out where she knew the woman from. Nothing out of the ordinary about the lady, but recognized her face.
A few weeks later she called me, excited because she figured out why the lady looked so familiar.
She had seen her on an episode of cops.
37. Crafty Work
Worked in the automotive department. It's more like ghetto people who own beaters looking to con you, rather than people of Wal-Mart. This lady rolls up in the broken Impala and tries to convince us her headlight worked the day before and wasn't working anymore since we did her service. In a nice way we had to tell her to f*ck off because if we did her oil, we didn't touch her damn headlight. People pulled that sh*t all the time trying to get free stuff or free service.
36. The Poor Fish
Used to work at Walmart a few years ago for a summer job.
One day I just punched in and the intercom said there was a clean up on aisle whatever. Turns out a kid spilled his bag of goldfish (not the crackers) on the floor. Should've they picked up the fish last? Not go to the food area afterwards. Anyways I carried the fish across the store in a container so they could survive. Not sure what happened after that though. Doubt they made it very much longer.
35. Life In The Panhandle
Not the funniest story but it was my truest "f*cking wal Mart" story.
I saw a lady playing hide and seek with her kid while carrying a small mustard container and eating a corn dog.
Now, I hate to make fun of the kid in this situation but this chubby little spawn of Satan was knocking stuff down in aisles as she ran to hide from mom counting and walking and eating her corn dog.
Mama was looking for her but really I think was just shopping pretending to look. She was moving so slow but I also don't think she was capable of moving with purpose anyway.
34. Left Out
I live in nyc and will never experience the joys of Walmart. I don't feel American at all.
When I worked for Wal-Mart we routinely had a woman come in wearing her workout clothes. Except they were really tight, like before women would wear stuff like that in public tight. She would always walk all around the store to us guys who would give her a look. She was attractive, and always had that sexy sweaty look going on. I assumed she always came by right after a workout. I always wondered why she didn't shower and change at the gym though.
32. The Days Are Long
Had a guy who felt he was being ignored by staff start yelling at the top of his lungs in the Garden Section " Can I get any help around here!? You bunch of c*cksuckers!" Yeah, cause we totally want to help you now.
Also had customers just walk right in the back of the store because the beer or whatever he wanted wasn't on the shelf so I guess he was going to go look for it. I was throwing some trash away and looked up and this guy who obviously didn't work there started asking us where something was.
Once while sitting in my car on my lunch break, I saw a guy just nonchalantly walk into the woods and undergrowth on the edge of the parking lot. Looking in my mirror and saw security following him apparently him and who I think was his son had brought in some reusable bags, filled them up with shrimps, steaks and all kinds of other things and proceeded to walk out the door with them.
31. Raisins Aren't Just A Fruit
'Honorary' Walmart employee here. I wasn't one of the blue vests but an independent vendor for the local cable company. You know those guys who set up booths and bug you to sign up for their service? That was me.
Anyway, I saw just as many fights and screaming customers, as well as someone sh*t on the floor in baby department. But my most memorable experience is with a man I like to refer to as 'raisin man'. Why do I call him that? Because he looks like a f*cking raisin. He's 4'10, skinny, with braided pigtails, painted nails, and his face is more wrinkled than an elephants *ss. And he's batsh*t crazy. The first time I met him he b-lined straight to my booth and started babbling about his cable service. not even complaining, or asking about new offers, just talking for the sake of talking.
Which wouldn't have been so bad, but independent vendors are commission only. So the longer this conversation goes on the more potential sales walk by. That and the guy had no idea what personal space was. I had to keep stepping back in order to stay within arms length of him. This happened a few more times until he stopped by during an overlapping shift with my male co-worker who was not amused and politely told the guy to f*ck off. I didn't see him again after that.
Until last week. I've since been promoted to one of the service centers nearby. This guy came in to exchange a cable box and I about had a heart attack. Thankfully, he had a handler this time and she after I scanned his equipment she was able to steer him towards the next available rep.
30. Deodorant For The MassesGiphy
One time I was around helping out with a Madden competition in the electronics department. Some guy showed up talking a lot of sh*t. He signed up and then took a walk around. He stopped over to get a stick of deodorant, which he brought back to the gaming space, and proceeded to apply to his underarms, like it wasn't a thing. Never paid for it. When he lost, he left the store, and the used deodorant behind.
29. What A Mix
I use to work at a Walmart that was located in southeastern PA. It was in a town sort of near Philadelphia so we had a mix of customers that were ghetto, rednecks and Amish. It was a strange mix in cultures, I would literally see Amish kids dressed in full Amish attire with fresh Air Force 1s (with the strap) or Jordans #12 (black and red). But anyways, my Walmart parking lot was basically a hang out place for Amish kids. They would ride their horses to Walmart and park at our horse stalls and get drunk and party.
But anyway, one day I arrived to work and saw horse sh*t EVERYWHERE . All over the parking lot, shopping carts and on about a dozen cars. Not sure if they had a sh*t throwing fight or somebody thought it would be funny to throw sh*t everywhere. The poor cart pushers and maintenance people had to clean it up. My manager filed a police report and I don't know what happened from there. But after that my manager would call the police any time a group of Amish kids met up in the parking lot.
28. They Have Notorious Names
The f*cking Mushroom Lady.
We flip over to the new ad every Sunday at 6 AM and every Sunday right on the dot, the f*cking Mushroom Lady will call the produce department and ask if our 8oz packages of mushrooms will be on the 10 for 10 sale (which usually happens about once a month, but it's a tossup if said mushrooms will be on the sale). Now, this would be one thing if she only did this the one time on Sunday, but she will call back nearly every day of the week to ask when the next 10 for 10 sale will be so she can stock up on mushrooms.
She escalated it this week and actually came into the store to ask us if they were going to be on sale. Again, wouldn't have been a big deal, except she then called two hours later to ask THE EXACT SAME DAMN THING. I suspect she hits all the other stores in the area, too.
I once asked her what on earth she wants all the shrooms for and I guess she makes soup out of them.
Also, The Whistler. Old dude comes in every Saturday mornings and whistles really f*cking loud as he spends two hours doing his shopping. Team members mysteriously disappear from the floor at this time.
27. It Just Keeps Getting Worse
Former peon here, I've seen several incidents where parents bring in their visibly sick children, who then proceed to puke on the floor in the store, usually on the grocery side.
We never found the perpetrators, but there were a few incidents where we found trails of feces in the store.
In our electronics department, at one end of our booth we had a large tv with an Xbox connected for f*ck-if-i-know reason. We had a specific incident where a little girl was playing on the Xbox while here parents were ignoring her, chatting. They immediately left when the girl just peed her pants while standing there.
26. We Could Tell
I worked at Walmart on the night shift for a few months. I have a lot of good ones, but my first fun one was when an unattractive young couple in filthy Baja hoodies ("drug rugs") came by myself and a coworker. They were clearly high as f*ck, and reeking of the most basic trashbag weed to ever stank. They're giggling, stumbling, eyes shot, and after just barely passing by, the girl looks up at the guy and shout-whispers, "Sh*t, do you think they could tell?"
25. Just Following Policy
My mom worked 20+ years at the service desk in Walmart... in Texas. I distinctly remember the day she called us to tell us that she had to get the police involved for a customer. She refused his return because he had already had previous returns with no receipts. After a certain amount of no receipt returns they are supposed to refuse you. These were all on big money items and the way they track it is through your drivers license number so it pulls up on your history in the computer.
Welp, the guy she refused wasn't too happy about her refusing his return. He left after calling her all kinds of fun names in the book and cursing up a storm. Not 5 minutes later he came back with a gun and pointed it directly at my mom asking "You willing to take my return now b*tch?". Not missing a beat my mom still said "You can point a gun at me all you like. The only way this is going to end is with you leaving the store unhappy." Security detained the guy and police came and the man was arrested. Mom gave no f*cks about his nasty attitude. I mean she's Italian and from NY originally. You don't win against my mom.
24. Scary Broken
I've been sitting on this one for a while; late one night I was craving chips and salsa, so I drive to the local Walmart at 1:30 in the morning. I go to get the salsa first but there's a woman with a cart in the salsa aisle with her cart blocking the salsa so I grab the chips first to give her time to get what she needs and move on. I come back to the salsa aisle and she's still standing there, her and her cart still keeping me from my salsa, I walk up beside her and say "Excuse me" and nothing! She doesn't move, she doesn't say anything, she doesn't even move her eyes to look at me she just stands there. I say it again, and again, nothing. So I reached over her cart, grabbed the salsa, and power walked right out of there!
23. You Can Do Too Many Things
Not an employee, but a regular customer. Over the last several months, there have been:
The guy who was in the 20 items or less line who decided that it was acceptable to take his items it off his cart and leave the cart ~6 feet behind him, preventing everyone wise in line from moving forward. When I pointed it out to him, he just kind of smiled and rolled his eyes. When I rammed his cart with my own to get it out of my way, he caught it, baked, and said "See, that's all you had to do." ??
The lady in customer service who bought a vacuum online and was trying to return it in-store, causing the employees in customer service to have to make several calls to various places (like online customer service). While one of the employees was actively making these calls, the other customer service employee tried to call me up (I'd just bought one blanket and had been accidentally charged for two, no big deal), but vacuum woman decided she wasn't having it. Instead of letting me approach the counter, she stood up and started screaming that she was here first and should be helped before me.
The employee pointed out that she WAS being helped, but that was clearly not enough. I was second in line and there for probably 15-20 minutes. The employee eventually just walked around the woman and helped me where I'd been standing in line.
The kid whose mother was getting her hair done while I was in line. The registers on either side of mine were closed, leaving this ~12-year-old kid two completely empty lanes through which he was riding his skateboard (in WalMart), circling the line I was waiting in over and over. And staring at my *ss the entire time I was in his field of vision.
22. Co-Worker Trouble
My mother and brothers worked for Walmart I worked for Sam's Club which is Walmart but worse because you have to do this cheer in the morning before they open. I quit Sam's after being locked in the store after hours to clean and my shift was over. Walmart did a phenomenal job in hiring my older brother for the hunting department. A convicted felon not allowed to handle firearms with a history of violence in charge of bullets and shotguns. He would also clock in and leave for hours to go home and then go back and clock out. My mom was hired as a cashier and she had a long history of theft from all of her other cashiering jobs but I guess that they didn't know that. Fast forward years later my daughter repeatedly applies at Walmart and they won't hire her because she keeps failing the psych test they now do. Too little too late Walmart. Too little too late.
21. I Guess the Customer Is Always RightGiphy
Former Wal Mart cashier/Customer Service Desk associate here. Had a guy bring in a copied $10 bill to make a purchase. When the cashier told him he couldn't use it, he demanded to speak with a manager.
Now, I'm not sure if a hand-colored xeroxed $10 bill, or the manager approving the sale was the most Wal Mart thing, but I think the argument could be made that it doesn't matter in the end.
20. He Just Had To Try
Once had a redneck with a mullet try and steal a comforter by just walking out with it, not even from the checkout lanes. Just blatantly walking out. When I asked can I see his receipt he hands me a receipt from 7/11 for beer. I said this is a 7/11 receipt and he looks at me and with the biggest smile goes "AYYYYEEEEEE" hands me the comforter and walks out like nothing happened. I was like tf
19. Wing Giant
Not much of a story, But I work in the deli, and routinely an absolute giant of a man (width and height), comes in and buys all of my hot wings. I don't exaggerate when I say this guy's an easy 7 feet, because I'm 6' 2" and this gentleman absolutely towers over me. I fear the day when we run out of the spicy goodness and he vaporises me with his immense strength.
18. Flying Rings
My mom worked at Walmart for about a year. She actually liked it as she was more active, but she decided to quit after the jewelry department manager had a meltdown and started throwing jewelry at customers. One old lady got pelted in the head with a heavy ring box and it was over.
Turns out the manager was selling the jewelry to friends and family, but would keep the boxes and stuff them with rocks and trash so inventory would stay the same. She had the meltdown before she was caught.
17. Golden Eggs
Caught several women stealing eggs out of the cartons putting them in their purses. This was almost a daily occurrence. It was so bad they even had cameras put up in front of the eggs.
16. The Competition Doesn’t Have It Any Better
People of Target from my four years there:
The person who took a dump in a kid training toilet, boxed it back up, and replaced it on the shelf.
The guy who disrobed in the entrance, and a bunch of managers had to block views of him by holding up cardboard until the police arrived.
The trail of poop that led, Family Circus dotted line-style, up and down and in and out of nearly every aisle in the store until it led me to the abandoned electric scooter that had diarrhea pooled in the seat, dripping on the floor.
Stay fast, fun, and friendly out there, team members!
15. Glorious MulletsGiphy
Went to a Walmart on a Friday night at midnight in Missouri and immediately saw the most glorious mullet I have ever witnessed. Also a kid pushing a cart so full of gatorade that the cart looked heavier than the kid.
Grew up in Missouri. The best thing is when you witness the rare couple mullet. When both husband and wife have matching, flowing mullets.
I used to work for a cell phone carrier at a little folding table near the front door of Walmart. This was 15-20 years ago when Walmart themselves did not sell phones. Way back before phones went digital, and in most parts of the country there were only 2 carriers to choose from. I was selling Motorola flip phones and BAG phones. So this was a while back. I moved from store to store around a medium sized metro area, about 8 Walmarts in town, and my team all took turns with them.
Anyway, this particular day I was stationed at a Walmart in a very ghetto part of town. One of those places where loss prevention had loads of staff and sh*t was still getting stolen all the time. Crackheads drifting around all the time and just tons of run for the door petty theft and fast hands "make change" scams. It was a lively place to be. As it happened a tropical storm was rolling into town. 2-3 in the afternoon, overcast and a bit dark outside, and the power goes out. Now these days there would be immediate battery backup lights that kick on, but back then there was a generator, and it took a good 2 min before itself started and the lights came back on. The other thing worth mentioning is this was an older store, built in the '80's. So lower ceilings than the modern ones, and back before they put skylights everywhere. The point is, it was PITCH BLACK in that building for a good couple of minutes. Aside from the handful of emergency exit signs, there were no lights.
Now, you remember back in grade school when the power would go out and everyone in the class would just start screaming because they could? Well, it was like that. I was about 20 yards into the building sitting at a little card table just past the little hot dog stand/restaurant place (remember them?) and the roar of noise was deafening and immediate. And then, after about 20 seconds, people seemed to realise that the lights were not going to come right back on, and there was opportunity afoot. And it happened. Seemingly all at once, damn near every customer in the building grabbed a handful of whatever they were standing next to and made a run for the door. It was and still is one of the craziest things I have ever seen. I was sitting next to a little half height wall (that surrounded the seating for the hot dog place) and close enough to the door that I was not in total darkness, so everyone was running past me and not into me. And I literally had front row seating for this whole thing.
For 30 seconds it was just streams of people, dragging all kinds of crap along with them, while the 2 security guys who work the front door were frantically trying to stop them and grabbing at whatever they were carrying. Someone grabbed two of the display model phones off my little table as he went past (they were empty shells with a weight inside so no real loss).
2 min later the lights all kicked back on, and it was just me, the employees, and a few retirees who were all looking a bit dazed by the whole thing. And all the clothes racks had been knocked over, sh*t was EVERYWHERE. Some jackass had managed to pull the whole rack of bicycles off the wall in the toy section. It looked like a bomb had hit. Took them damn near a week to get it all back to normal. They closed the store for a day just to get it cleaned up enough to let people back in and they had a few places roped off for a few days while they fixed broken racks and stuff.
It was kind of incredible.
12. That Isn’t How You Use That
If this says anything about the associates, just last week I was in the employee bathroom when another associate walked in. All the stalls were full so he peed in the sink, didn't wash hands, and left.
This is why I avoid Walmart bathrooms like the plague. There's something about Walmart stores that make people lose their sense of normal human behavior.
11. Inept Fraudster
Had to convert surveillance video footage to dvd for an attorney a while back. Was footage of a lady, clear as day, cracking open a bottle of olive oil, pouring some out on the floor, then putting it on a nearby shelf. She then looks around and walks over to the spill and slips and falls. So funny to watch. It was one of those projects where I was calling people over to my desk, "you gotta see this"!
I worked in a neighborhood market in Tennessee. One day a heavy storm rolled in as I was pushing carts. As I was pushing in my last row, I saw a man walking towards the entrance, and since it was raining it looks like he was wearing a white suit with yellow polka dots.
I go inside, turns out it's a very thin spongebob onesie. He wasnt wearing underwear. It was not a good day for my eyes.
9. Always Buy The Shrink-Wrapped Ones
I worked at Walmart in the garden department, briefly in the early 90s. I am going to take a break and walk past the deoderant aisle and I see this huge guy, maybe 350 pounds, in a wife beater, put on some deodorant, put the cap back on and put it back on the shelf. Told my manager about it and he said it happens all the time.
8. Don't Commit Crimes While You're Committing Crimes
I worked maintenance there. One day I was out retrieving carts, when loss prevention called out for help. She caught our pharmacist stealing a bottle of dish detergent. He struggled. Hard. Way harder than the situation called for. During the struggle, pharmacists jacket came off and numerous pill bottles scattered across the parking lot.
He had a good scam ruined by a $2 bottle of dish soap!
7. No Is Just A Suggestion
I once worked in the fabric/sewing department and was asked to cover Hardware while the guy was on break. I wasn’t trained on how to mix paint, so worst case scenario I bother the guy if need be. Easy enough right?
Not even 10 minutes later an older (65+) customer comes up asking about a vacuum in the aisle. I go to see if I can assist him with questions.
He asks if he can open it and try it out in store, I say no. He opens it and starts assembling it right in front of me.
Of course this is the moment my coworker comes back to find me staring dumbfoundedly at this old man.
EDIT: Just to elaborate, the exact question he asked me was "Will this work on carpet?". I said yes. He then asked if he could open the box and try it on our NON-CARPETED floor. I politely said no. Then he proceeded to open it without skipping a beat.
6. Confidence Is Key
I worked at Walmart a long time ago.
I once saw an older man in his mid 40s, 250 lbs, walking around in construction boots, Daisy dukes, and a pink belly shirt. At least he was confident!
5. Catcalling Is Never Good
Not that this is really "peopleofwalmart" specific, but hey, I've been catcalled in the daytime, while working. I worked in the produce section so I had on those green aprons and my hair up in a ponytail.
Know what's great? The look on a guy's face when he realizes he just whistled at my ass while I was stocking shelves, except I'm a dude. I've been miss'd, mam'd, darlin'd, hey hot stuff'd...
4. Huffy's Great EscapeGiphy
My time to effing shine; I knew those four years at Walmart would pay off eventually.
I worked the service desk, so I dealt with/saw some of the most epic people of Walmart bullsh*t imaginable.
We had a customer, we called her Huffy because she would come in and huff the aerosol dust remover that people use to clean their keyboards, get high, and then pass out in the bathroom for a few hours. I should also tell you that at the end of our parking lot was a small grassy median, and on the other side of the median is a Burger King. Remember this note.
Well management and loss prevention got tired of ol' Huffy coming in and stealing dust remover and taking up valuable bathroom space. So the next time she came in a manager and a loss prevention associate were in her like flies on sh*t. Somehow, that wily ol' Huffy was able to partake in a few cans of dust remover before the two associates moved in. Once Huffy saw two employees walking towards her she took off, with Walmart's best giving chase. I'm not sure why they chased her honestly. It was probably a slow day for them. The electronics worker who saw this all go down got on his walkie and radioed us up at the front, "Sh*t's going down and it's moving towards you."
I didn't have anybody at the desk so I moved out on the floor just in time to see Huffy and the two associates streak through the doors like bats out of hell. I ran to the door because I am not one to miss a show. I saw Huffy get in her car and make a break out of the parking lot, clipping two cars as she made her escape, leaving two winded Walmart workers watching her drive off into the sunset.
Now believe it or not, but someone who has just huffed two cans of dust remover isn't the best driver. I watched the car start to swerve halfway down the parking lot, then straighten out as Huffy gunned it. She jumped the median and slammed her car through the back wall of the Burger King, coming to the stop in the vicinity of the kitchen. Hands down one of the better attempts to escape the long arm of the Walmart law I've seen.
3. Hot New Shoes
I remember one time close to close, these two guys come in. I didn't mind, the guys were usually quick and only wanted food. To my surprise, they come to my cash, and one had shoes in his hand and a tag. Whatever. I notice he's really jovial and couldn't stand still longer than two seconds. Finally figure out he's completely wasted. The other guy was his friend and thankfully sober.
Drunk guy excitedly says he's wearing the shoes he bought so that's why he's carrying his other ones and has the tag. Well, that's no big deal to me. People do that all the time. So I said okay, and wasn't really paying attention to what my screen said and politely said, "May I put your shoes in a bag with that tag? Just in case?"
"Yeah! What an AWESOME idea! Thanks!" He paused and started bouncing like a little kid, "Can I show you my new shoes?! Can I? Can I?" His friend shrugged and shot me a look.
Well, seemed harmless, right. I said, "Sure" to humour him. He then shows me PINK SLIPPERS. No kidding. I stared and then pasted a smile, "Yeah, they're nice."
He's absolutely giddy with excitement and just as I was going to point out something, he grabs the bag after paying and shouts "THANK YOU!" Then proceeds to run outside as happy as can be.
In the pouring rain.
2. Oh, That's Baby Guy
I worked at a Phoenix area Walmart in the late 2000s. We used to have a customer come in dressed head to toe in a baby outfit complete with a bonnet, a pacifier and adult diapers. It was a middle aged white guy. The first time i ever saw him i freaked out but everyone else what like “oh thats baby guy”. Apparantly he was a normal guy with a wife and a baby and one day he just snapped and decided to live the rest of his life as a baby. He would pay people to come to his house and change him and feed him in a high chair etc. he was a minor celebrity in the area before he passed away.
1. Where's The Feta?
I don't know if you want looks or behavior, so I'll try and cover both. I worked overnights. My store was right across the street from a hospital, but only a couple blocks away from a strip club, so you can only guess the variety of people I saw.
I worked on the grocery side of the store, not general merchandise, so I didn't see a lot of crazy stuff. I mostly had to deal with rude idiots. For instance...
- Customers would refuse to move while I was pulling pallets and insist that I go around them in addition to all the holiday displays and construction. Yeah, that's not happening.
- Customers getting angry at me that food items didn't come in a smaller size, as if I personally did this to screw them over.
- People would open up the cooler doors to the dairy and stick their heads in to ask where products were instead of finding an employee on the floor. Mind, there's a bunch of giant-ass cooling fans in the dairy cooler that make it impossible to hear anything. I'd have random-ass customers screaming "WHERE'S THE FETA?!" out of f*cking nowhere. Scared the sh*t out of me.
- Had a woman threaten to call the store manager because the eyeshadow she found on a clearance rack had been marked down to $2 and she wanted it for $1. She started screaming and making threats and sat outside on the benches for three hours on the phone complaining about the store and how awful we were.
- And finally, some former friends of mine tried to start something with me while I was on the clock. They followed me to my department and were opening up all the outside dairy cooler doors to try and scream at me, so I hid in the meat freezer until another employee came through and I told him to get out manager.
We are told that, if you're not confident, you should just "fake it til you make it."
This is great--in theory. In practice, sometimes "faking it" can have extremely real and terrible consequences, which these people found out the hardest of hard ways.