Sunday, March 30, 2008

Why I Won't Shop at the Oxnard Wal-Mart Again

I went to Wal-Mart last weekend to get my oil changed. I have been going to Wal-Mart for years now, as I like all the extra stuff they do for the price. Typically, I park my car somewhere near the garage, walk to the counter, hand them my key, tell them where to find my car, and all is good. Occasionally there will be someone guiding traffic, and I will arrange for the oil change right there.

This day turned out to be different. This is my first oil change since moving to Oxnard last October. Some of you are thinking I should have had my oil changed long before last week, and you would be right. I am well aware of how I should have done this far sooner.

Now, this Wal-Mart is already pretty ghetto, but I was hoping for some sense of normalcy in the automotive department. I pull my car into a spot near the garage, and walk in to turn in my key. The person behind the counter tells me that I do not set up the oil change inside, but am supposed to talk to the guy that is out there. She also told me to park my car in the back of the line outside. I had just taken my son out of his car seat, and in a two-door car, this is a somewhat difficult task. I informed them that there was no guy outside, and it would have been nice to know the arrangement before I took him out of his car seat. She just shrugged. I was mildly annoyed, but thought I would just get over it and go about my day.

I was meeting my wife at the Wal-Mart so we could do our grocery shopping elsewhere while we waited, and managed to meet up with her on the way back to my car. I told her of my annoyance, and gave my son to her so I wouldn't have to put him back in the car seat. I then pulled into the line. Again, nobody was standing around, and I saw one guy pull the first car in line into the garage, so I thought I was in the right place. I leave my engine running and step out of the car part-way, trying to scope out the situation. I was quickly confronted with an angry voice telling me that the line didn't start where I was. I looked around, saw no other cars, and waited until he finished his reproach. There was no attempt at customer service, no "Hey, I noticed you aren't familiar with this particular Wal-Mart's procedures, let me help you out." No, I just got railed on for no apparent reason.

At this point I was more than slightly annoyed. I expressed my dissatisfaction by commenting on how the process was incredibly stupid. The next thing I know, he is rushing me with violent intent in his eyes, and he demanded to know if I called him stupid. Of all the things I wanted to say at that point, I informed him that I was calling Wal-Mart's procedures stupid, and not him. It took a little time for this to sink in, and he continued his approach. I had to open the door wider to keep him from being able to physically assault me. Can you imagine that? Instead of customer service I get confronted with a seemingly imminent assault?

I don't know if I managed to appease him, or if he realized there was a woman with her kids watching, or what, but he finally backed off and walked away. Needless to say I did not get my oil changed that day. I was pretty fired up at that point, and spent the next half an hour venting my frustration in a more productive manner than the one almost used against me.

I was already having second thoughts about this particular Wal-Mart, but this event seems reason enough to boycott the Oxnard Wal-Mart for the foreseeable future.

1 comment:

Griz said...

my recommendation is to just stay away from all walmarts:D