I have some issues with Walmart. Of course I have many MORAL and POLITICAL issues with Walmart, but I will not bring those up here. No, the issues I would like to put "out there" comprise two major areas of the store: the little girls' clothing area and the meat section.
When I first heard that Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen were designing their own line of clothing, and that it would be sold at Walmart, I thought I had hit the jack pot. You see, in the last 5 years or so I have developed a real love for MK and A. I wasn't always such an ardent fan: in their "Full House" days I thought they were overrated and I much preferred overlooked-middle-child Stephanie (how short-sighted I was). But when I lived in China, MK and A were all I had some days. I would stay up late while Mike worked the night shift and watch "Passport to Paris" on HBO. Gosh, they had such great hair. Gosh, their clothes were so cute. They were truly an inspiration to me on lonely Chinese nights. They have been among my style gurus ever since. So what if they are 8 years younger than me? (Side note: recently I have been disappointed with MK, who I always preferred slightly to A. She really does look like an orange on a toothpick, and those huge sunglasses aren't helping her cause). So when I found out about their clothing line, I was excited. I searched the Rexburg Walmart for their label almost daily (not much else to do in Rexburg). Well, come to find out, their clothes are for LITTLE GIRLS, as opposed to women in their late twenties/early thirties! Of course I thought they would be more geared towards the teenagers, but I figured I might be able to get away with it. But I just can't FIT into a child's size five! Now I walk by the girls clothing department, wistfully looking at all the MK and A Olsen clothes that I would TOTALLY wear if they were just 10-15 times bigger. Stupid Walmart!
My other problem with Walmart is their ground beef. Now, before I go into detail, I must first explain that I am not at all squeamish about raw meat. I can touch it, pound it, grab it, squeeze it between my fingers, etc. In fact, I like raw meat, not to eat, but somehow I find it appealing. I would drape myself in raw meat, if it were socially acceptable. So this is a serious issue if it is coming from someone who once referred to herself as "the queen of meat." But, have you SEEN the Walmart ground beef? I think my problem with it is that it's too tidy: you can see the rows of skinny, ground up beef clearly through the taut plastic. It's not like in other stores, where the plastic is right up against the meat, making those perfect ramen-noodle-esque rows of ground beef merge into a large chunk. No. This ground beef is TOO perfect, if you know what I mean. I can't even walk by it when I'm in the store. And I REALLY can't buy it. The other day I was desperate for some ground beef--I really was--and I happened to be in Walmart. So I bolted over to the meat section, closed my eyes, and grabbed some ground chuck (getting chuck somehow made me feel better about the whole thing). Then I threw it in the cart and quickly covered it with some grey yoga pants. When I came home, I had to face the music and divide it up into 1 lb sections to freeze. THAT was hard. Surely Walmart believes that their ground meat looks really appealing, which is why they go to great lengths to display it in those rows of what looks like thick, meat-colored hair. But it is gross and upsetting. If you don't believe me, go look for yourself at a Walmart near you, which surely MUST be near any of you, because Walmart is taking over our world, one pound of ground beef at a time.