BENTONVILLE, AK - Suffering from sluggish sales, in part caused by Amazon.com's massive online retailing venture, Walmart associates, perhaps taking a cue from the TruTV series World's Dumbasses, may have begun staging practical jokes to generate publicity, hoping that customers who have deserted their stores will return. That, or the damned place is haunted or possessed.
Either way, some of the bizarre events have injured some shoppers and alienated others.
In one incident, a 47-year-old man was bitten by a rattlesnake. In another, shoppers were treated to a promenading naked male customer. In a third, an impromptu meth lab was discovered in the women's restroom of an Alabama store.
The rattlesnake incident occurred in a Lewiston, Idaho, Walmart's garden shop. The victim had visited the store to purchase some rosebushes for his wife's birthday. "She'd rather have a beautiful bush than a few cut and dying flowers in a messy vase," he explained. "When I say' bush,' I mean rosebush, not bush bush," he hastened to explain.
The snake "slithered out of nowhere, and without any warning whatsoever, other than the eerie rattling sound it made for fifteen minutes before I picked up the rosebush, it sank its venomous fangs into my hand. I screamed bloody murder, but was able to shake the damned thing loose and stomp it to death. I could have been killed, just because my wife wants a beautiful bush," the unfortunate customer declared.
In an Exton, Pennsylvania, Walmart, a 300-pound man took off his clothes as he shopped for men's underwear, selecting a pair of thong panties and frightening women and children.
The 32-year-old man, Lamont Taylor, seemed confused, both before and after police were called to the scene to taser him. According to authorities, Taylor said he believed that he was an alien abductee and that he was inside the extraterrestrials' "mother ship," examining their body parts.
Police are unsure whether the makeshift meth lab discovered by a janitor at the company's Boaz, Alabama, store belonged to a customer or one of the store's associates. However, they said, the lab's supplies and equipment all bore Walmart price tags. Materials bought or stolen from the discount department store "probably helps keep costs down and profits high," the store's manager, Mike Hunt speculated. The investigation of the incident continues, police say, suggesting that they will want to "look into" how Hunt can afford a 16-room mansion and a fleet of classic automobiles on a manager's salary, "even with Walmart's generous bonuses and other incentives."
Other bizarre incidents have also occurred at other Walmart locations around the United States, including a human cow's theft of Soy milk, a wallet's growing of human teeth, a toilet with a hunger for human buttocks, and a customer's use of Monopoly money (stolen from the store's toy department) in lieu of cash.
Authorities and store officials are uncertain whether these incidents are the results of pranks, sabotage by Walmart's rivals Kmart and Target, criminal actions, ghostly activity, or satanic deeds, although the company's CEO, Mike Duke, says that he believes them to be the result of associates' attempts to draw defecting customers back to the Walmart fold. "I blame it all on Amazon.com's challenges to our bottom line and to associates' loyalty to their jobs."
Interestingly, Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel points out that his rival's own job may be "imperiled," due to Duke's and other "high-ranking Walmart executives' recent attempts to cover up alleged bribes to Mexican government officials for favorable treatment South of the Border. "These bizarre incidents have put his mismanagement and allegedly criminal conduct on the back burner, so to speak."
Asked for his take on these strange affairs, Kmart CEO Aylwn Lewis offered an "insider's tip": "We're having a flashing blue light special on flashlights next week. Don't miss it!"