The 10 People You’ll Meet at Midnight Wal-mart

It’s 11:45 on a Saturday night. You’ve still got to go to the store. Good thing Wal-mart’s always open, right? Here are…


  1. The Kids at the Playground. From the moment you step out of your car, the first people you notice are the high school kids who still think that using Wal-mart as a playground is ironically fun and hilarious. You just know that at some point that night, one of them said, “hey gang, you wanna see if we can get kicked out of Wal-mart?” and now you’re watching them run around with pool noodles, hoping one of ’em gets close enough for you to clothesline.
I'll of course be wearing my midnight shopping speedo
I’ll of course be wearing my midnight shopping speedo
  1. The Way-too-friendly Employee. Ah, there it is, the bathroom products isle. As you turn the corner, though, you are greeted by the smiling face of the one employee stocking shelves that night. “Hey there, can I help you find anything?” Why is he smiling? How in the world is he so happy at midnight on a Saturday!? Did he murder someone!!? Are those boxes filled with the severed remains of the body!!!? You, of course, won’t stay around long enough to find out.


  1.  The Elusive Siren. This was only supposed to be a three-minute trip. Walk in, grab deodorant and a pack of oreos, self check-out, done. Three minutes. Just as you grab the cookies, you notice a beautiful woman at the end of the isle. Did she just smile at you? As she walks away, you know you can’t just follow her; but you can “happen” to bump into her again in the next isle. You slowly meander over one isle and— wait, where did she go? You quickly walk to the other end, just in time to see her disappear three isles down. How did she get there so fast!? This time you abandon tact and nearly sprint to get there. But she’ gone again! You’re ready to admit defeat, but suddenly there she is again, over by the dairy section! No way you’re taking your eyes off her this time. You march purposefully toward her, rehearsing ways to start conversation using yogurt. “Greek, huh? That’s my favorite, too (ooh, bacon!) I jus—” but in the split second you glanced at bacon prices, she’s gone again. You look around desperately, only to see her disappear into women’s clothing. You’re pretty sure it’s impossible, but by the time you’re done she’s nowhere to be found and you’re in the back corner of the electronics section. So much for three minutes.
Also how I feel every time Wal-mart changes up their floor plan
Also how I feel every time Wal-mart changes up their floor plan
  1. The Zombie. You can’t escape the electronics section unscathed. There you encounter the first of Wal-mart’s undead: the electronics zombie. Thankfully tonight she’s just sitting behind the service counter, pale skin reflecting in the light and dead eyes following your movement. You could swear she’s drooling…
Because of course there's something for "walmart zombie". Thanks, Google!
Because of course there’s something for “walmart zombie”. You’ve outdone yourself, google.
  1. The Vampire Coven. You find the second of Wal-mart’s undead midnight residents in the stretch before you finally hit the check-out. All you’ll see is grouped mass of black hoodies, chains, piercings, skulls, and eyeliner. You can’t tell how old they are and you don’t even want to know what they’re doing in Wal-mart at midnight. You avoid making eye contact and just hope they’ve already fed.
Aren't they supposed to burn in sunlight?
Aren’t they supposed to burn in sunlight?
  1. The People Watchers. Your exit from the dark and mythical outer reaches of midnight Wal-mart is met by a couple sitting on one of those random benches. They’re enjoying frozen yogurts and doing that thing where they’re clearly talking about you and laughing while trying to seem inconspicuous. Right, because I’m the one who should be made fun of, guy who took his girl to a Wal-mart at midnight on a Saturday.
Somebody should bring bowler hats back
Somebody should bring bowler hats back
  1. The Completely Ambiguous Guy. Of course the self-checkouts are closed for who-knows-why, so you’re stuck in line at the only checkout available. You reluctantly notice the people in front of you. First there’s a guy who’s impossible to read. Gray shirt, jeans and Payless sneakers, not athletic but not fat, not clean-shaven but not scruffy, he’s buying beer and The Sandlot from the $5 bin. In the end you can’t tell if he’s a loving father or a homeless pedophile.
Anyone want to tell me what this guy's hair is doing?
Anyone want to tell me what this guy’s hair is doing?
  1. The Middle-aged Woman who Lives in a Shoe. Just ahead of the guy is an exasperated-looking lady with seven—no eight— no, at least 215 children. They are running around the register, grabbing things off shelves, and one of them is just standing in the shopping cart and screaming for no apparent reason.
I imagine the mom feels a bit like Buzz here
I imagine the mom feels a bit like Buzz here
  1. The Red Box Religion. Finally, thankfully, you’re ready to leave. On your way out you notice the group by Red Box machine. Weren’t they there when you came in? How long does it take to pick a movie? It wouldn’t worry you too much, except you could have sworn you heard one of them say, “all hail the mighty Red Box…” It is high time to get out of this place.
We desire entertainment, oh wise ruler
We desire entertainment, oh wise ruler
  1. Yourself. There it is, the outside world; you can see it now, beckoning. Just as you reach the sliding doors, somebody walks in. You’re mere steps from freedom, yet something about him makes you pause. He’s just so… normal. His half-zipped jacket over gym shorts and flip flops, his grab-what-i-need-and-get-out-of-here pace, everything about him reminds you of, well, yourself. You make eye contact for a brief moment, a silent salute to each other and to all who dare brave the strange and magical world of midnight Wal-mart.
Go get 'em, soldier
Go get ’em, soldier

5 thoughts on “The 10 People You’ll Meet at Midnight Wal-mart

  1. Ha ha. My favorite thing to do at Walmart is to approach those naughty children and tell them “I just hear the security guard call the police and tell them to come to the toy isle and arrest you. You better watch out they are coming.”

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Hopefully it makes enough of an impression they think twice before acting up like that again in an inappropriate place.

        Liked by 1 person

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