Sunday, April 20, 2014


Everything is closed on Easter Sunday in Montgomery Village, MD, which makes me happy for the folks who have time off, but is frustrating when you need wire cutters, for example, or new sunglasses, or a digital voice recorder, all things I thought this regular old Sunday would be a good day to pick up.

Walmart, though, is open. Walmart, I guess, is always open, Christian or not. And while I generally loathe how the low prices at Walmart are arrived at and its actions toward its employees, I will say that one nice thing about this seemingly cookie cutter store, a big box slotted among other big boxes in a very planned community, where medium-sized trees grow in regular intervals along the sidewalks and the streets have faux-English names and the townhouse on one end of the row is indistinguishable from the one of the other end, is that in this Walmart is a sloshing sea of shoppers representing more than half the globe. The Maryland suburbs are great for this, I guess. Women are wearing bright, Tanzanian cotton printed dresses and turbans, headscarves and embroidered tunics, saris. Bumper stickers are in Amharic; conversations are in Spanish; dashboards are tricked out with Hello Kitty and waving golden cats. I hate seeing it at Walmart, but damn, I love seeing it.

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