An Outsider's Guide to the People of Walmart

By Jake Schroeder
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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Walmart can be an alarming experience for those who aren’t already familiar with its legendary shoppers. Thousands of hilarious pics of these strange people dressed outrageously at Walmart have been turned into Internet gold.

Dubbed "People of Walmart," the collection of photos can be so ridiculous that you need a guide to even understand what you’re seeing. Before you step foot into those big blue doors, let’s take a look at what kinds of people you're likely to run into. 

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Patriotism Is Paramount

Walmart is no mere store. It’s an American tradition that has spawned an entire subculture of its very own. Some of your fellow shoppers may appear a bit unique, and others may be incredibly intoxicated (or behave like they are), it would be rare to meet a Walmart shopper who isn’t proud to call America home.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

The U.S. is a country that takes Bud Light, short shorts and cheap, imported Chinese goods very seriously, and no true Walmart shopper will ever forget it. Don't be surprised to spot enthusiastic displays of patriotism in the checkout lines.

Shave Years Off Your Real Age

One of the added bonuses of becoming a regular Walmart shopper is that you're sure to pick up plenty of free anti-aging tips. To the untrained eye, the person pictured here appears to be an unassuming 20-year-old girl. Prepare to be mind-blown.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

As it turns out, this is actually a woman of well over 40, who has cleverly disguised her appearance to appear decades younger. How did she do it? No one can say for sure. Buy her a pack of Marlboros, and she might be willing to give you a few tips.

No Shirt, No Shoes, No Problem at Walmart!

Although most Walmarts throughout the country are equipped with a plethora of fitting rooms, those tiny rooms occasionally experience some annoying backup. After all, nothing says Walmart shopping like the tradition of trying on 50 garments to see which ones are actually your size — the sizes on the tags are useless.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Walmart understands this and tends to be incredibly tolerant of shoppers who resort to trying on items right in the middle of the aisles. This is even true of things that are in no way intended to be clothing. Obviously, there’s nothing worse than getting a Natural Light box home, only to realize it’s the wrong size.

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Beware Discount Bliss Overload

Unfortunately, this individual has succumbed to a phenomenon all too common among even the most experienced Walmart shoppers. Upon entering the store, he was clearly overcome by the vast array of rollback prices and suffered a mild fainting spell brought on by budget bliss.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

To avoid being claimed by a similar fate, it's best to lower your eyes upon first entering the store. Peek up only periodically for the first few minutes to take in one discount price at a time. Repeat until your eyes and mind feel properly adjusted to the environment.

Borrow Your Daughter's Outfit Day

The people of Walmart are nothing if not generous when it comes to their kin. Given the constant rollbacks that the store offers, most family members walk away with plenty of items to share. Here, a father and daughter demonstrate the communal spirit of sharing a wardrobe.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Perhaps after soiling his regular clothing on an early morning hunting trip, this dad had the peace of mind of knowing that his daughter's closet was open to all. After doing a little digging, he was able to find an outfit that almost fit so he could proceed to the store as planned.

The Faux Fur Look

Given Walmart's illustrious reputation in certain areas, it's no surprise that some of its shoppers consider it the height of social destinations. When shoppers find their towns to be lacking in venues for showing off their fanciest attire, it's not uncommon to see them parade the latest fashions throughout the aisles.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Here, for instance, we have what is either a woman sporting a full fur coat or an animal that's devouring a shopper like a giant snake. Whatever the case may be, you have to admit the scene is unfolding in a spectacularly stylish fashion.

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Always Lend a Helping Hand

When traveling among the people of Walmart, it’s important to observe their societal customs. No matter how many guns may be on the rack in a shopper's truck in the parking lot, they never hesitate to help one of their fellow shoppers. This couple not only understands the spirit of Walmart but has utilized it to fit their own unique needs.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Having concocted a brilliant husband and wife reunification system, they are now able to shop without the fear of being accidentally separated for life. Should you ever see this man, stop what you’re doing and return him to Dee promptly, please.

Never Leave Your Animals in the Car

Walmart prides itself on being a warm and welcoming environment for everyone, but they tend to draw the line when you have more than two legs. Still, the shoppers tend to view it as a cardinal sin to leave your pet alone in the car while shopping.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Should you fail to sneak your fur baby inside via your purse, you should know that your failure may be answered in kind by the pet in question. The animal may find ways to remind you to be a decent human being, all with the full support of the entire parking lot.

Rollin' with My Homies

Now, this is more like it! This gentleman understands that the bond between a man and his goat is not something to be taken lightly. Keep in mind that any animal can be disguised as a service animal these days with forged papers and a vest purchased off Amazon. The staff probably doesn’t even bother to ask for confirmation anymore.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

After all, this goat probably works hard doing... whatever it is that goats do. He deserves an evening out on the town every now and then. When thinking about places to go that would allow such a thing, Walmart definitely sprang to the top of the list.

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Beware of Accidental Accessorizing

Here, we have a common Walmart wardrobe malfunction. In the rush to grab everything on her list before the checkout lines filled up yet again, this lady clearly resorted to rushing through her trip to the bathroom. While tempting, this is generally an ill-fated plan.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Many a shopper has attempted to turn the bathroom experience into a pit stop-style performance, only to end up suffering from a similar fate. Don't let it happen to you. Take as much time as you need in the stall and return to your shopping experience refreshed and ready to spend — minus the toilet paper hanging from your pants.

Master the Art of Multitasking

Over the decades, the people of Walmart have developed amazing abilities when it comes to doing several things at once. After all, how are you supposed to hold a random reptile, pay the cashier, order cigarettes and grab a last-minute Snickers all at once?

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

This gal didn't even bat an eye when faced with the challenge. The more you shop, the more wily tricks you will learn. As our featured shopper here skillfully demonstrates, hair can manage to serve as a third hand if you ever find yourself in a pinch.

Push Your Clothing to the Limit

Assuming you've mastered the last piece of advice, then it's time to take things even further. Not only do fashion rules cease to exist inside Walmart, but you can also kiss the days of finding the correct size goodbye. In Walmart, everything suddenly becomes one size fits all.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

You see, the people of Walmart are magical folks who have developed several otherworldly skills over time. Among them is the ability to make things fit that blatantly don't. If you place something on your body and manage to keep it there for any length of time, it works. Grab your purse or wallet, and you’re good to go!

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Keep Your Kids Close

If you're the kind of mom who finds yourself explaining to your kids on a regular basis that they are the reason you can't have nice things, then definitely take them along on your next Walmart outing. The odds are good that your child will finally feel at home among his people.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

If, however, you aren't in the mood to clean up knocked over displays, you may want to take precautions. This clever mom has devised a method of childcare that's sure to win her the parent of the year award — at San Quentin.

Cart Your Critters in Style

The people of Walmart tend to be incredibly encouraging when it comes to adoption, even if your children don't happen to be human. The store's aisles are well known among the overly aggressive cat-loving community, and the scene you see before you is unlikely to raise a single eyebrow.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

A thrifty community, Walmart shoppers see no point in getting a great deal on a stroller if you're not going to put it to good use for many years. So, go ahead and pile it full of cats, infants or cases of beer, as long as you’re putting it to good use.

Nothing a Pair of Suspenders Can't Fix

Likewise, if you aim to become a true person of the 'Mart, then you must abandon the idea of discarding clothes simply because they no longer make any sense on your body. Rest assured, you will be able to find an additional piece of clothing at a killer price that will totally make the original item work.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

This gentleman has devised a way to wear a pair of pants that appear to have been accidentally designed without a seat (or maybe he just has no seat?). Luckily for him, he knew all too well that these hefty suspenders were waiting on aisle 5, just begging to save the day.

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Be Sure to Visit the Photo Department

When it comes to gifts, nothing quite says I love you like a special photo. The Walmart photo department center prides itself on providing state of the art equipment that you can use to upload, edit and print your photos, all for a reasonable rate.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

The woman you see here seems to have taken careful pains to select just the right shot for her special someone, and she is cooking up a masterpiece he is sure to treasure. Best of all, she can find a wide selection of frames that are sure to accent her print perfectly.

Defy Fashion Rules

The next point is perhaps best demonstrated by a small mental exercise. Search the reaches of your mind for everything you know about how to dress. Take all the fashion articles you've read, all the socially accepted style norms you know and everything you've ever learned from episodes of What Not to Wear.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Place it all in one huge mental heap — and burn it! You’re officially ready to get dressed for Walmart! Stepping through the doors of a Walmart is akin to leaping into one huge fashion rabbit hole. There are no rules, and if they must exist, it's only so they can be broken.

The Crazier the Hair, the Better

If you've combed, styled or otherwise arranged your hair in a respectable fashion, then you are in no way ready for a trip to your local Walmart. Venturing into such a sacred place with styled, controlled hair is considered among the most insulting of insults to its people.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleOfWaImart/Twitter

Before making this epic mistake, consider whether you can salvage the situation with outrageously colored hair dye, an insane hat or an obvious wig. If all else fails, roll around in some leaves or dirt in your front yard and pray that your efforts will prove to be enough.

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Enjoy Plenty of Kid-Friendly Rides

Want to get your kids off the couch and out into the real world? It doesn't get any more real than the aisles of your local discount city. Not everyone can afford a trip to Disneyland, you know, but you just may find that Walmart offers all the fun of action-packed rides at a 100% discount.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Your kids are sure to love this DIY theme park attraction, which has become known as the "floor mop." Simply hobble over to the free adult motor buggies, tell your kid to grab a wheel rim — carefully, of course — and knock yourselves out.

Whatcha Gonna Do When They Come for You?

Although almost everything is acceptable in Walmart, not even retail paradise is without some limits. Disparaging remarks against local football teams, for instance, are not tolerated and may be reported to any law enforcement officials who happen to be roaming the aisles.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Here, we have a fine example of two officers who immediately abandoned their own shopping agendas to rush to the aid of a fellow shopper. Having due respect for all men in uniform, Walmart was even generous enough to offer them free transport to the aisle where the incident occurred.

It's 5:00 Somewhere

Ever heard a day drinker excuse their behavior by noting that it's always 5:00 somewhere? The "somewhere" being referred to is likely the local Walmart, where the clock always points to margarita o'clock. The store's got you covered when it comes to all your beer, wine and Jimmy Buffet CD needs. (Some locations also sell liquor!)

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Best of all, a quick look around will confirm that the vast majority of your fellow shoppers were clearly halfway in the bag before ever even entering the store. Few other stores offer such a high likelihood of picking up a few drinking buddies along with your other items.

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Childcare: Nailin' It

It's no accident that carts are basically just large metal playpens on wheels. Why waste money on a fancy babysitter when Walmart offers everything you need to keep your toddler safely contained? Best of all, your child will never be without plenty of things to keep them busy.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

As all true Walmart shoppers know, carts were not designed to stay empty for long. The longer your toddler is forced to suffer through your shopping spree, the more interesting items you will have to add to the cart to entertain and inspire her.

Keep Things Classy

While not wearing a shirt isn't a problem in most Walmarts, many Southern gentlemen strive to maintain higher standards and keep their shirts on. The obvious downside is that summer in many Southern states can be absolutely sweltering.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Rather than give in to the temptation to join the hordes of bare-chested dudes roaming the aisles, this man has come up with a brilliant compromise. By donning his wife’s crop top, he still managed to maintain his high standards of decorum while enjoying a pleasantly breezy midsection. Get in line, ladies, we have a winner.

Free Hats in Every Produce Department

Although most kids might find a trip through the grocery department to be a bit of a bore, you won’t hear any such complaints from the children of Walmart. This young man has availed himself of one of the many free superhero masks you can find at the end of every fruit and vegetable aisle.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

You may consider yourself too old for such fun, but don't discount the appeal so quickly. If you ever find yourself shopping during a sudden downpour, you're in luck. These bad boys also make perfect head coverings and make-shift rainboots for the unprepared.

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Be Sure to Take Frequent Shopping Breaks

The importance of pacing yourself while shopping cannot be stressed enough. What can you get at Walmart? Literally everything — even if you only went in for one thing. That kind of shopping power can become exhausting, and it’s important to recharge to keep shopping.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

After all, once you’re inside, you might as well go ahead and pick up everything you might need for the rest of your entire life. Luckily, Walmarts are equipped with plenty of friendly rest stations, which you shouldn't hesitate to use when shopping fatigue sweeps over you.

Take in the Surrounding Scenery

As you'll quickly discover upon descending into the Walmart subculture, you can find many true visionaries among its citizens. While most people would have only seen a humble cart rack in the parking lot, this guy is clearly not most people. He discovered so much more than a convenient place to deposit his cart.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Cart racks can be used for a surprising array of aerobic and stretching exercises — as well as makeshift overlook areas, apparently. So, next time you arrive at your local parking lot feeling unsure of your surroundings, feel free to climb on up and take a look around to get the lay of the land.

Remain Respectful of Clever Disguises

Due to its reputation for inclusion and friendliness, Walmart occasionally proves to be a haven for criminals on the run. You may occasionally run into such characters, and it's important to avoid blowing their carefully orchestrated covers. This woman, for instance, is obviously attempting to keep a low profile.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Although she may or may not have just robbed a saloon, she has taken the time to disguise herself as a punk rock teenager to avert the law. Should you come into contact with her, be cool. Nobody’s got time to have their cover blown in the makeup section.

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Lure the Ladies with the Latest Trends

If the online dating scene hasn't panned out well for you, then try your luck in the electronics section. Here, you see a trendy young man rocking the saggy shorts look as he picks out a nice new burner phone for his totally above-board business needs.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

While the sight of every single inch of his boxers may surprise you, rest assured there's no need for alarm. The art of displaying underwear in an uncouth fashion is a Walmart dating trend that is as old as time. Yank out those Fruit of the Looms and just wait for the magic to begin.

Family Fun for Everyone

If there's one thing that Walmart seems to specialize in, it's bringing families together. The store has toys for the kids, the home goods section for moms, a hunting section for dads and more knick-knacks than most grandparents could ever reasonably fit on their many shelves.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

Here, you see a perfect example of family bonding that spans three generations. The young man in the photos appears to be so overwhelmed with emotion that he has wisely chosen to take a moment to compose himself before continuing this precious memory in the making.

Bringin' Flashy Back

While the interiors of Walmarts everywhere promise untold treasures, you should know that a trip inside is not without its dangers. This is especially true on heavy shopping days like Black Friday. Many have learned the hard way that a store full of people in the presence of hot deals is not a situation to take lightly.

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Photo Courtesy: @PeopleofWalmart/Twitter

In order to avoid getting separated from your party and lost in the crowds, it's best to wear brightly colored attire. Not only will this alert other shoppers to your presence, but it can also help family members find you if you get lost in a crowd of camo.

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