Wal-Mart in Roanoke – the place for desperate singles to meet and greet?

3 minute read

July 17, 2005, 5:58 PM

You know what’s so special about this store?

Wal-Mart on US 220 in Roanoke

This is the Wal-Mart on US 220 near Tanglewood Mall in Roanoke, Virginia. They have introduced Singles Shopping, which, according to The Roanoke Times, is “an opportunity for singles to meet while stocking up on milk, underwear, snacks and small appliances.”

Between 6 and 9 PM on Friday nights, it’s singles night! A $1 donation to Children’s Miracle Network is requested, and the interested parties can advertise to the world how desperate they are for a date by tying a red ribbon to their shopping cart. Then the store has certain areas designated as “flirt points”, like the CDs and DVDs in electronics, the candles in furniture, or the chocolate in the candy aisle.

It’s too bad that store’s not a Supercenter. Then they could also make a flirt point at the whipped cream, or at such stereotypically-single-people foods like TV dinners and frozen pizza.

I think that the concept is a good idea, since when you strip away all the various cutesy features, you’re basically having a fundraiser for Children’s Miracle Network, which helps provide money to various children’s hospitals. So that’s a good cause.

Still, I’m just tickled by it. And it lets the imagination start to wonder about how people actually use these Singles Shopping nights. Imagine if you will – a big, greasy, dirty man, with things living in his beard, and named Tiny (all really big guys are named Tiny – it’s the law), wearing old, stained shorts and a wife-beater. A real looker if I’ve ever seen one. Imagine him trying to pick up a woman at the designated flirt points. It’s kinda funny, don’t you think? That one would warrant looking over one’s glasses to deliver the rejection.

Speaking of which, that’s one reason I like my glasses, and like wearing them somewhat low – I can look over them at people as needed.

Anyway, though, a condensed version of the article that appeared in the Roanoke newspaper appeared on page A3 of the Staunton News Leader, where everyone at our Wal-Mart in Waynesboro got to see it. The customers also got to see it, and the store was abuzz with Singles Shopping-related chatter. A number of customers said that we should have a similar event. If we ever do, since I’m ever the attactive bachelor, I’m going to have to find a way to keep all the women from causing a traffic jam when I get mobbed coming out of the back room up to my register. And then having to explain to the customers that we have 19 registers plus self-checkout, and that they can’t all come through my line.

Um, yeah. And if you believe that, I should let you know that the Woodrow Wilson Bridge is for sale in DC.

Still, the concept is crazy enough that I should visit and see what all the commotion is about for myself. And who knows, it might be crazy enough to work. What I should do is get a cart, get a bright red ribbon and proudly tie it on my cart, and make a $1 donation to CMN. Then quickly go through the store and put a box of condoms and two kinds of sandpaper in my cart (see about four Journal entries back for more on that). Then go to the flirt points, and see if I can’t pick me up a date!

Though for anyone who knows the status of my love life right now, the phrase “single and staying that way” is probably the best way to describe it. And that’s the way it’s been since 1998 when Sarah Chegash dumped me.

Still, that ought to be interesting if I check it out. If nothing else, I can report back to you on the Web site, as well as to my coworkers in Waynesboro, about how it went.

And as an only-slightly-related side note, at one point in time, I took that photo that I showed you at the top and altered it a little bit as a curiosity, to see how a regular Wal-Mart might look like in the more recent green color scheme similar to what Waynesboro’s got. Take a look:

Wal-Mart on US 220 in Roanoke, altered to have green color scheme

Pretty cute, if you ask me.

Web site: Article in The Roanoke Times about Singles Shopping at the Wal-Mart on 220.

Song: From Strong Bad Email #99 (Different Town): "And this little weirdo would be a modestly hot girl to help me through the hard times, you know, the kind that are only sorta hot so they don't mess around with other guys!" (Referring to Homsar)

Quote: "I should go check that out..."