By Dennis Pickering
I picked up the paper and there it was in big bold letters right on the front page. K-Mart will be closing its doors effective the first of the year. Another giant of the business community is biting the dust. So why is K-Mart going out of business I ask? Why I’ve always bought lots of stuff from them, why they probably make enough off me alone to pay their rent.
So why don’t more people just shop there? They’ve got lots of stuff that everyone needs and it’s pretty low priced too.
So I decide lets check this out and make a personal evaluation of the situation. So I set aside one day during the week to shop at K-mart and another day to shop at there big rival Wal-Mart.
The appointed time came and I decided to go to Wal-Mart first. The first thing I noticed is that right in front are a bunch of parking spaces set aside for senior citizens, no not handicapped, they were somewhere else. Now I’ve never considered myself senior to anyone (just ask my wife) but I figured what the heck..
Then I walked up to the front door and the first person I notice is this old guy saying “Howdy” and shoving a shopping cart into my hands. I didn’t even have time to tell him “I was only checking things out.”
After I make it past the front entry I wander around in a daze for awhile. “This place is huge”, I say. After I wander around for awhile, I figure I’ll never find what I came in for, so I latch onto this cute girl with a blue apron that says “Wal-Mart” on it. So where do I find the “old Spice” after-shave I ask. I am kind of partial to “old Spice”. I’ll show you says “the blue apron”. She takes me by the hand and escorts me to where the after-shave is. Now can I help you with anything else, she says. Where do I pay for this I ask? Go to the end of this aisle, and you’ll see the checkouts, she say. Do you want me to show you, she says. No I think I’ll be ok, thanks, I say.
I then select my “Old Spice” and proceed to the checkout. Where I’ am confronted by a checker, standing at the end of her check line. I was just waiting out here, she says, so you would know I wasn’t busy.
I then pay for my after shave, go to my car and drive home. Somehow I feel that I’ve accomplished something today. And my wife wonders why I’m acting so cheerful.
The next day I woke up raring to go to K-mart.
When I drive into the parking lot, I look for a senior’s only parking spot. But theirs none to be found. I then look for a close spot but end up having to park quite a ways out because of the "going out of business sale". I walk into the front of the store and look for a cart but can’t find one because everyone beat me to them. I then look out the window and notice a bunch of carts in a fenced off area out in the parking lot. So I walk out the front of the store and go get one of these carts and bring it with me into the store.
The stores not as big as Wal-Mart but I didn't remember where the after- shave was located. So I find this gal with a K-Mart apron on sitting on a stool behind the jewelry counter and ask her where the after shave is. Her reply is I'm not sure but I think they are over there somewhere as she points in the general direction of the pharmacy,
So I walk over to the pharmacy and see a sign that says 10% off everything in the store, cash only, no exchanges or refunds. Sounds fair, says I, after all I’m saving money aren’t I. Pretty soon I find the after shave, but the sale price is 30 cents more than what I paid for it at Wal-Mart yesterday. Some sale, I say.
I then take my overpriced After-shave up to the check stand. There are at least a dozen check out stands but there are only 2 checkers. So I stand in this line of 10 people and wait my turn. When I finally get up to the check out stand I am greeted by this gal who has bright red hair and a streak of midnight blue running down the middle of it. She’s also wearing a big earring and has a stud in her nose. That’ll be $2.89 she says. But the sign says 10% off I protest so It should be $2.60, I say. Just a minute she says I’ll have someone check the price. So she calls this kid over and he looks at the after shave and walks slowly to the prescription area. After about 10 minutes he comes back and says, “that’s 2.89 less 10% or $2.60. “Isn’t that what I said. I say to the clerk. I’m sorry but we can’t take your word for it, we have to check, say’s the clerk. I then take my after shave to the front of the store where I have to go through this airport security like gate to get back to the parking lot. As I go through the thing goes off like Rambo attacked the place. What do I do now, I ask?
You’ll have to go back to the check out stand and have your item run through our scanner again, I am told. So back I go where I have to wait until the checker is finished with her current customer to run my item through again. I then successful leave the store and collapse in my car before going home. Once I get home I am dead tired and crabby for the rest of the day. After figuring it out. My Old Spice In K-mart cost $2.60 cents plus 1 ¾ hour of my time. While at Wal-Mart the same product cost me $2.39 cents and took 20 minutes of my time.
So I came to the conclusion that maybe it’s time K-mart went out of business after all.
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