Wednesday, January 02, 2008


Proud to be from Tennessee

This past Monday - New Year's Eve - I found myself in the customer service department at the Wal-Mart Super Center on Cobb Parkway in Marietta, Georgia. You see, I was staying at the home of my Drivin N Cryin concert-attending buddy's brother in Marietta. We three went to Wal-Mart prior to departing for downtown Atlanta to pick up some pre-DNC show, ahem, refreshments. Since we had plenty of time to spare, my bud's bro decided to exchange a DVD he'd received for Christmas.

There were only three people standing in the return line (!); so, my companions and I stood there shooting the you-know-what as the line slowly moved. All of a sudden, a very heavyset woman came stomping into the customer service area toting a not-so-new microwave oven.

A Wal-Mart employee who was standing near the return line asked Microwave Lady, "Where's the box?" "In my stor'ge buildin' in Tennessee," said Microwave Lady as her face squinched into a scowl.

"Do you have a receipt?" the Wal-Mart employee asked. Microwave Lady, who was obviously still offended by the box question, answered the query thusly: "It woulda taken me 2 hours to get it out and it's full of dishes."

"Do you have a receipt?" Microwave Lady was asked again. "No, I don't! I've never needed one before!"

The Wal-Mart employee, showing more restraint than I would've ever been able to demonstrate, kindly told Microwave Lady that a box or a receipt was required before an exchange could be executed.

"Goddammit, I guess I'll just buy a new one!" Microwave Lady shouted as she deposited her microwave in a shopping cart packed with returns. As she stomped out of the customer service area, she added an additional "Goddammit!" (Apparently, two blasphemes're better than one.)

Not one minute had passed before Microwave Lady returned. She retrieved her microwave and shouted, "I'll take the [inaudible] to the Wal-Mart in Chattanooga!" Then she left for good.

I'd never, ever been as proud to be from Tennessee as I was at that moment.

Reckon the folks in Chattanooga gave her a new microwave?

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