Monica Bielanko
A chronicle since 2005 of my marriage & move to Brooklyn in my twenties; becoming a mother in my thirties; moving to Pennsylvania and learning to amicably coparent after divorce in my forties while living 3 doors down from my ex-husband in a small country town.
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Monday
Nov232009

What I Get Up To On The Weekends

If you haven't yet seen the People of Walmart website I highly recommend it. Warning, once you get in there it's tough to break away it's just such a magnificent display of humanity. I tell you this early in this post so the latter part of the post makes sense.

Don't ever say I'm not helpful.

Ever since the creation of my Money Makeover Serge and I shop at two stores every weekend. First we hit WalMart because, well, it's Walmart and shit be cheap, yo. But you'd be surprised...WalMart doesn't always have the best deals. Take chicken breasts (heh heh...I said breasts). Smiths grocery store usually runs a cheaper deal. Also, the WalMart nearest my home doesn't carry my brand of deodorant. Unscented Dry Idea, if you were wondering, and I'll be Goddamned if, twenty years into my deodorant-wearing career, I'm going to switch that shit up now. Dog food? $4 cheaper at WalMart. Point is, it's worth it to go to each store. We've budgeted $150 for groceries each week and we've kind of made a game out of it. Going over the budget is as disappointing as a bad date would've been in my single days. Now I get my weekend kicks by staying within my budget, y'all.

Not only do I get my kicks by coming in under budget, the excitement has ratcheted skyward by the constant looking out for the next Person of Walmart.
"There. In front of you, to your right." Serge stage whispers surreptitiously out the side of his mouth.
"I don't see!" I panic. These things have to be done lightning quick or your opportunity is lost forever. Like the time the tanned and tattooed guy with bleached hair and all leather ensemble, sans shirt, walked out of my life forever without my having snapped his photo.

Now, my sweaty hand clutches my Blackberry, ready to snap the photo.
"Two o'clock. TWO O'CLOCK!" Serge's eyebrows are wriggling like rabid caterpillars as he tries to signal me. "Too late, they just passed."
"What the fuck are you yelling the time for?
"I was giving you the location, ass. Two o'clock. In front of you to your right...Man in lady's sunglasses and short-shorts."
"Oh. I see. Yeah, okay."

It is in this way we Abbott and Costello our way through our Sundays at WalMart. Serge is always The Lookout Guy. He's good at that and prefers to leave the dirty work to me. I'm always The Triggerman. Sometimes sprinting far ahead of our latest Person of Walmart to snap the photo while pretending to text.

We're getting better. This is my first Person of Walmart:



Rookie photo to be sure. And safe, taken from behind like that. The shirt required the back view. But WalMart has certainly given birth to much better. And yesterday I snapped the evidence. I hit The People of WalMart jackpot. A man so decorated with bits and bobs and cloaks and capes that I had no trouble walking right up to him and asking if I could snap his photo. He thoughtfully licked his vanilla ice cream cone and said of course I could take his photo. I was about to snap it as he sat on a bench but he was taking this impromptu photo shoot very seriously. He obliged my request by standing at attention and blowing the horn that hung on a string around his neck. Now, this was no pansy horn either. He blew that motherfucker as loud as he could, over and over again, while WalMarters passed to and fro, shopping carts as full of goods as Santa's sleigh. Speaking of Santa, maybe dude was Santa in disguise. Could be, could be...



I would submit the photo to the actual People of Walmart website but I couldn't bear the snide comments it would surely accumulate. This man was as sweet as they come.

Reader Comments (6)

You should try the Mitchum unscented, it is better then the Dry Idea, I use both, but love the Mitchum. I love the People of Walmart and i am almost sure that like 90% of them are in Arkansas, home of Walmart! Everytime I go to Walmart I am on the look out for someone i can take a pic of and post to the website! lol

November 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJen

My husband loves his people of walmart t-shirt!

DH used to hate wal-mart, but after looking through the p.o.w. site he gets excited to go and find the next iconic person of walmart.

November 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterWindyLou

Brilliant. And you will be happy to know that - as a sheer coincidence - your blog happens to come right before "People of WalMart" on my list of bookmarks.

November 23, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterjive turkey

Wow! I saw that same guy at Office Max a month ago! He's always got gobs of things just danglin and hanging and clanking. I was thinking when I saw him that there is no way that guy was going to buy anything, but he ended up buying some $200 printer. Very strange.

November 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJenny

I am addicted to that people of walmart site and feel totally ripped off that we don't have either Walmart here (Australia) nor people of that calibre. At last not that I've seen. TOTALLY ripped off.

November 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

My good friend found her mom's new husband on that site...it was amazing. And yes, they live in Arkansas.

November 24, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLindsey

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