Daily Archives: August 8, 2009

Why Wal-Mart and the YES Network are on my (you-know-what) list

anti walmart

girl-scout-cookies

No, it’s not for the same reason, but I’m pretty pissed at both of them right now.

Actually, I’ve been mad at Wal-Mart for just about the last 10 years. Ask any of my good friends and family and they’ll tell you straight out that I refuse to go there, or let anyone I know shop there.

Why? Well, you could start with their absolutely shady business practices. Or their unconscionable treatment of employees who want to unionize or, you know, improve working conditions. Or you could read about their terrible overseas factories and how the lives of their workers there are.

If you think I’m just making this stuff up, check out this website, or read as much as you can of this incredible Pulitzer-Prize winning series by the L.A. Times from 2003.

Anyway, I’d thought I’d run out of  reasons to hate the discount chain. But nope, they keep scraping the bottom of the barrel and filling me with rage all over again.

The latest target of Wal-Mart? Yep, those dastardly, underhanded, good-for-nothing troublemakers: The Girl Scouts of America.

If you haven’t heard, good ole’ Wal-Mart has decided to copy two of the Girl Scouts’ signature cookie brands, the Tagalongs and the Thin Mints, and sell them at lower prices.

And it’s a good thing, too!

Boy, those adorable little girls have been getting away with selling great cookies and raising money for FAR TOO LONG, the Arkansas boys in the back room must have figured. You’re telling me that the Samoas, Trefoils, and Do-Si-Dos really should only be used to fund activities for the Girl Scouts, an organization that does SO much good for little girls’ morale and for the community?

I tell ya, it’s a good thing Wal-Mart is here to teach those girls a lesson: Life is hard, kids, and we’re going to make your cookies and sell them cheaper and there’s nothing you can do about it! We’re Wal-Mart, dammit, and we run the world.

Just disgusting. Despicable. Awful. I could go on, but I think the facts pretty much speak for themselves. How can anyone in good conscience shop there? I often wonder. Oh yeah, their prices are way lower than everybody elses.

I call on everyone who’s ever bought or eaten a Girl Scout cookie (I think I’ve had about 5,000 Tagalongs in my life, thank you) to boycott the store until they change their new plan.

Girl Scouts of America, I’m with you! And please keep selling your great cookies, I look forward to them every year.

** Now, as to why I’m mad at the YES Network. A few months ago, my cable provider here in Central Florida told me that YES, the Yankees/Nets behemoth cable channel, was being added to my sports package. Great, I figured. I only watch a handful of Yankees games per year anymore, but there are definitely times I want to watch them.

I called the cable company at the time and asked if it would be an extra charge. Nope, they said, I already get the sports pack, so it’ll be included.

Then, she tells me, I’m not getting what I think I’m getting. Due to some bizarre contractual agreement, I’m getting the YES National network, which isn’t allowed to show live Yankees and Nets games.

“So what the hell am I getting?” I replied, knowing that Yankees and Nets games account for 98 percent of what anyone wants to watch on YES.

“You’re getting their alternate programming during the games, and you’ll get the pre and post-game shows,” the cable lady replied. “Only the people in the Tri-State area can get the regular YES Network.”

I was stunned and angry. What the hell is the point of having the network if the viewers outside the NY area can’t see the real programming?

So of course, Friday night, the  New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox played a classic game, 0-0 into the 15th inning, before Alex Rodriguez hit a two-run homer to win the game.

And I couldn’t see it. My YES Network showed all kinds of crap until the postgame show came on.

AARRRGGGGGGGGGHHHH was, I believe, my utterance over and over as the game went on.

YES Network, please explain to me why you would have a network, which you want to expose to as many people as possible, and then not show the top programming on the network to as many people as possible.

Just stupid, stupid, stupid. YES and Wal-Mart, you have incurred my wrath.

**On a slightly better note, I know many people are probably overdosed on John Hughes tributes like the one I wrote the other day, but I found one more beautiful essay that I thought you might like: This woman had a pen-pal relationship with the director for many years.