On Saturday I chilled out on the couch for a bit watching TLC. I watched one episode of What Not to Wear in which Stacy & Clinton pulled off one of the better make-overs that I have seen them do in a while. I mean they took this woman from Ms. Super Duper Frumpy Queen to pretty dang gorgeous. With Carmendy's help too. Oh and the new hair stylist guy, whose name I don't recall (I miss Nick) Anyway, they are so awesome.
And then I watched Trinny and Susannah (the Brit version of the same show) make over an American woman who was a staff sergeant but when not on duty, dressed like.... (how shall I put this?) a whore.
Unfortunately because I was not far enough behind and because these were not recorded "events," I had to suffer through some commercials. And worst of all. For Wal-Mart.
I don't think I've ever really gone into it here on the blog but we are NOT Wally World shoppers.
The MAIN reason for this is because we (meaning Tim and I) feel that they represent the "race to the bottom" with their focus on the lowest possible prices, ultimately lowering everyone's wage across the planet. You cannot have THE lowest prices without low cost and those come at a price (loss of MANY, many American jobs and the cheapest labor in OTHER countries). Case in point, Levi's used to be made in the USA and partly because of their dealings with Wal-Mart they no longer manufacture any jeans in the the U.S.
We find it quite ironic that this retailer has managed to market itself primarily to the people whose jobs they have compromised.
Coupled with the fact that their stores are usually not well kept, many of the products they sell no longer represent the quality that they used to, and their lack of employee benefits (another way to keep that LOW, LOW price), we choose to stay away.
Anyway, despite my distaste for the store and the company's business practices, I do like it when they prove me right.
The two commercials that I had the pleasure of viewing today (multiple times) really just lit my fire right up, as they both prominently featured junk food and food laden with trans fats and preservatives (which we do our best to avoid in this house - and please don't get me wrong, we still do get some, just not nearly as much as many American families, I presume).
The first commercial asked something like "why spend $5 at the drive thru when you can get the same food (junkity junk junk JUNK) for your family at Wal-Mart for only $2 a person?" The ad featured Sunny Delight (a drink VERY close to soda that has barely any real juice and tons of HFCS and artificial crap), Jimmy Dean croissant, egg, sausage and cheese sandwiches (at 430 calories a pop, with more than HALF from fat - 26g) and Yoplait yogurt (that is full of sugar and adds another 170 calories). Easily a 700 calorie breakfast. BUT FOR the LOW, LOW price of $2.00 a pop. Go ahead! Please eat and drink one of the worst breakfasts you can to start you and your kids' day. It'll be fun and CHEAP! (excuse me a moment while I picture the Wally World smiley face with a big ole greedy smirk for a mouth...)
And the second commercial I had the pleasure of watching (from Wally World again) was for... well, I don't really even know because I was mad again within the first .5 seconds. An aisle FULL of boxes and boxes of Jolly Ranchers and Milk Duds and Sugar Babies and DOTS and Whoppers and NO, I am not kidding you. With some sort of wireless devices mixed in. Get your sugar overload and your blackberry all in one place! WHEE!
Now I know I get my fair share of sugar. But these items are considered 'treats' in our household and why oh why can't they feature something else in their ads? Something slightly healthy perhaps. I'm extremely sensitive to this because I come from a family that has weight issues and therefore my children may eventually have them as well. I don't want them constantly flashing these images of JUNK in front of my kids, or me for that matter. But they obviously insist.
And just to add insult to injury, intermixed with these ads was a commercial for Brawny paper towels where some toddler has just made a HUGE mess in the kitchen with Cherrios and milk. Once he's "finished," his father cleans up the mess with these MOST AWESOME EVER paper towels with a crazy smile on his face. Yeah. Right. Like that would ever happen. And again! I do NOT want MY toddler getting any crazy, Cheerio and milk splashing ideas. I'm sure he conjures up enough of those in his own cute little head, thankyouverymuch.
Some of you may say I should just turn off the t.v. but then I would miss Trinny and Susannah pulling on some woman's knickers and that's just not fair.
And some may say I'm a hypocrite if they looked in my freezer and saw the frozen waffles I feed my boys. But c'mon, I know they aren't NEARLY as bad as the things Wally World is touting as the LOW price, wonderful breakfast for MY family.
What makes me really sad actually? The fact that many people will go out and buy those exact items and feed them to their families on a daily basis because Wally World said so and because it's CHEAP. And THAT fact is just really hard for me to stomach. No pun intended.
BY THE WAY:
1. I know my family still buys products that are made overseas. These days it's pretty close to impossible not to. But I feel this company was the one to really catapult many of this country's retailers into that buying position.
2. I do not begrudge others from shopping at Wal-Mart, as I understand that some people feel their budgets afford them to shop there for many of their necessities. However, I myself choose not to patronize their stores and am most happy to take my business elsewhere and am thankful that I can.