Walmart vs. Amazon....my take
We’ve all been there.....you’re probably there now.....
Scouring the aisles, bins and shelves for that 3 hole folder with pockets AND prongs in exactly the shade of royal blue and those PaperMate fancy pencils in the little black box. Let me just ask....does every school name the exact item and brand needed ....might as well just give us the product number.....What does it matter if I get Mead or not Mead? Or that exact brand of pencil....isn’t a normal pack of #2 pencils sufficient?
Maybe you’re laughing at this because you’re one of the forward thinking moms who just ordered from your school and all the supplies are sitting on your child’s desk on the first day.....smartie pants. You have not a care in the world right now.....you’re probably sipping a margarita by the pool for all we know.
Had I made it in time to order supplies through the school I probably could’ve saved about $300, 5 hours of shopping and a couple Tylenol (or something stronger let’s be real). Good grief. This post might not resonate with you plan-ahead-ers.
Most ALL other moms......how do you tackle your school supply list?
Send the nanny?
After I jogged my memory to the last time I was in a store shopping for 2 lists of supplies, reaching over and around the throngs of people....standing in the longest lines, you would’ve thought it was Black Friday or something. I tell you what, I wanted NO part in that this year!
Last year we pretended to road school so supplies weren’t necessary. I’d much rather go through this major headache then back to schooling my own children and ruining them for life....Lord, save me!
Let me tell you what I went ahead and did. I had the brilliant idea to shop online for ALL my supplies. Sounds easy, right?! Read on my darling reader friend!
I have some secret feelings about Amazon.....or as I call him Mr Big Face (MBF to shorten things) let’s just leave it at that....so in an effort to compete with MBF I decided to test out Walmart.com (WMC moving forward) I mean they boast the same features: free shipping and 2 day delivery. Nice deal....someone needs to give the MBF monster a run for his money.....So 10pmI’m shopping for crayola and glue sticks along with about 94 other items.....clicking off every specified line item one by one.
Until I get to the end and find 24 things I couldn’t find (this may or may not be an exaggeration). No big, I’ll just have to go to the store and shop in person for that stuff....not the direction I was headed ... but ok fine.
All of a sudden 2 days roll by and I get a pair of scissors in the mail....pink!!! (Needless to say I ordered BLUE!) then a clear plastic pencil box comes in.....broken! I was beside myself.....I this was not the walk in the park I was expecting from clicking a few buttons and presto...delivery.
Ring .....ring.....ring...WMC.... customer service...... hold.....20 minutes later.....
“Oh your son can’t survive with pink scissors?! Not even for a discount?” Let’s get the third party provider on the line ... wait what?! ....ok someone at some random phone number decided pink is turning back to blue and I just have to hold tight a couple days....great. Solved.
The pencil box is yet another vendor......so call them....get a replacement one ordered.
Now for the remaining hoops I must jump through.... I’m really trying NOT to rant here but you’ve gotta know what it’s like doing this school supply dance every year....
Go to Walmart (WM you see I like abbreviation) for pickup of remaining items..... 12 people in front of me ....Lord, give me patience! ..... finally, my turn.....oops.....standing in wrong line cause I didn’t actually READ the email they sent with detailed instructions.....dude! My bad!
Back of the store.....pickups!
I found only one guy back there helping an invisible customer with her photos.....we’ll call him a sweet old man (SOM for short). After several minutes of trying to wait patiently while at the same time injecting “excuse me, sir” into the silence.....to no avail ...(surely SOM’s hearing aids were off).
At last, he got up from his photo processing project and said “I’ll be right back”.....
Oh Lord Jesus I need help.......after 5 minutes he comes back.....there is hope.....oh wait.....nope SOM just forgot his keys..... “I’ll be right back” he proclaimed ... again.
No joke after 10-15 minutes I honestly thought he might need a paramedic....maybe he collapsed?!! Oh finally SOM returned.....got my order number....found me in the system and that’s where our happy story turned to my nightmare...
“I’ll be right back” for the third time.....at this point I had been in WM waiting for this process for well over 30 minutes......(MBF is looking pretty sexy at this point)
Upon this SOM return, we (a lady was now behind me) watched him in silence for several minutes as he searched for more of my order. Turned out my items were scattered all over in individual bags, bins and shipping envelopes..... a needle in a haystack came to mind.
I felt like a talk show host would pop out from behind the desk at any moment and point out the hidden cameras ..... it wasn’t a joke though...this was real life! I was certainly being tested but I kept my cool on the outside, I’m sure.
As 3 more people take their place in line SOM shows frustration....as we unveil the products I see we’re missing about 7 things and I accidentally ordered 3 cases of composition books....oops!.....what a giant mess.....I was loosing said cool.
Topping it all off.....SOM’s computer crashes....seriously....... what next? Now it was sitting at an hour I had been there....waiting.
Finally.....finally he calls for an assistant manager who basically tells me there’s nothing to be done about the computer so I could just take my things and handle the missing items with WMC customer care line. If this dude wasn’t chill I might’ve flown the handle. And all those precious people behind me .... SOL.
Listen....I came home to another clear pencil box in the mail.....this time at least they put it in an actual box rather than a flimsy ‘I don’t care if your stuff gets trashed’envelope.....did it work? Nope.....broken. .....I’m starting to think WMC is working against me.....smart mom is having a second margarita while I boil.
When I finally checked off everything I received and compared to what I was missing the awesome WMC customer service rep said she found them .... at the store....they just forgot to give them to me.....hmmmmmm..... man oh man that in store experience was my undoing and now she tells me I have to go BACK for more?!
When I arrived at WM today they informed me half of the stuff never made it to the store, or they can’t find them either one, the other half they credited my account since I didn’t show back up for the items in a timely manner (the email said I had a week). Ok fine then....what’s done is done, right? Lemme just buy the items you refunded me and we’ll leave it there for crying out loud. The drama didn’t end there but I’ll drop the dead dog already. (That makes sense there right?) Ugh!
MBF, I miss you...I wish I didn’t, but I do!
So goes another shopping session on the MBF app.....ordering the remainder of my goods.......easy as pie.....what does that tell ya?
Some were pink
I picked up
Hour long wait
I sat on hold x 3
I cried inside
I ordered again
WMC is still working out some kinks I’m sure just think twice before you do an in store pickup! I hesitate to warn you because it feels like bashing....but I’m just saying WM has some things to iron out before I’ll be back.
Ladies, friends, neighbors I know we can get through this tumultuous back to school season.....I have high hopes. We are stronger than we were yesteryear and braver than all get out. It’s our time to rise and take the victory over the trauma of back to school.
So I’m curious...how did you collect your supplies this year? Or have you....girl you better get a move on already.....times a tickin’. Lemme know in the comments.....
love you all...Blu