Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Almost a Shoplifter

My teens and I went to Walmart to get some sleds. After picking out the coolest sleds we could find, we rounded the corner, and something made me stop.  It was a blue Tony Hawk stunt bike – classic, only $49 bucks, and the perfect size for my 9 year old nephew.

I called my sister. “Tami, I know we don’t do gifts for the kids, but there’s this bike.  I don’t know why, but I’m supposed to buy it.”

Tami said, “Well... Ryly’s bike was stolen out of the shed last week, and we don’t have the money to get him a new one.”

Hanging up the phone, I said, “Okay, kids, we’re getting that bike for Ryly.  He won't care that it’s the cheapest bike in Walmart.”

We took our treasure to the checkout counter, when it rang up at $124, I nearly choked. I said, “Can you double-check that price?”

“The bike is $124,” the clerk snapped. “The numbers don’t even match on that price tag.”

A line began to form behind me; impatient shoppers gave me the stink-eye. The checkout clerk called the supervisor, and together they discovered the $49.99 tag had been taken from some other item. Twenty minutes later, when the Supervisor rang for the Assistant Manager, I started to get scared.

Maybe they thought I was trying to steal the bike! The thought made me shiver. But the surveillance tapes will save me…Shit! The surveillance tapes! They’ll see my kids and me riding the bikes up and down the aisles! They’ll see us stopping at the accessory aisle to fill the tires with air!  They'll see...

My thoughts were interrupted when the Supervisor said, “What are we going to do?”
The Assistant Manager said, “We’re going to give them the bike for $49.99.”

And that’s how, my children learned the power of giving. I wish you could’ve seen my nephew riding his Tony Hawk stunt bike: no shoes, no jacket, all smiles.

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