God love the Walmart man.
You know, the old guy who is always there at the front, passing out buggies and plastering babies with smiley-face stickers? That poor lonely soul that seems to work every hour of the day, every day of the week…It is his life’s mission to make friends with whosoever enter the hallowed automatic sliding glass doors.
God forbid you be in a hurry–the Walmart man will chase you down! "Ma’m! I need to give that young lady a sticker!"
Why? Will somebody think I’m trying to shoplift her?
"Yes, sireee bob. This little sweetheart needs a smiley face, don’tcha girly-girl? Would you like to hear me play my harmonica?"
Mia is afraid of the Walmart man. She doesn’t want to talk to him and doesn’t want him to talk to her. She won’t look at him and will scream until I pick her up. She promptly buries her face in my shirt. This happens with or without the harmonica playing. But especially with.
I love that old man. I really do. As borderline-harrassing as he is, it doesn’t feel right to walk into that store without a sticker or two. I encourage Mia to at least wave.
"Oh, well, there she goes! You like me, don’tcha? You are just AS SWEET AS YOU CAN BE!"
I strategically wait until he is busy going through someone’s bag or annoying another baby to make a break for the door on our way out. This does not usually work but I will keep on trying. He shouts to us and catches up. "Bye sweetie!" And he grins an old man grin.
Mia, after making it safely to the car, will, mockingly, break into the same crazy grin and say, "I did NOT like that man’s harmonica. How come he had a hole in his teeth?"
God love the Sam’s Club man. You know, the old guy who checks your membership card before you go in and usually doesn’t say two words to you other than "Thank you"? Mia is for some reason dying for this man to strike up a conversation with her. She waves.
"Well Hi!" He says in his incredibly country accent, which makes his "hi" sound much more like a "HAAAYAH."
Mia looks at him thoughtfully for a second and then responds with a sarcastic "HAAAYAH."
The man is unphased. Does he realize that a 3-year-old just made fun of him? No.
"What’s your name little girl?"
"Peter Pan," Mia snorts.
"Well ain’t that somethin’! Good-bye now!" The man smiles and moves on to the next person in line.
Mia shouts at him, "Well, BAAAAYAAH!"
Then she giggles to me as if to say, "Can you believe that guy?!"
I’m beginning to think the Walmart man may rethink trying to get her to open up to him.