If You Can't Beat 'Em...

Discussion in 'Mountain Bikes' started by Nelson Binch, Mar 13, 2003.

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  1. Nelson Binch

    Nelson Binch Guest

    ...well, you know the rest!

    Last fall, I was walking around in a Super Wal-Mart (killing time on a Sunday off) and out from the
    back roll their very first Schwinn bikes.

    I knew they were coming, but these 'looked' better than I expected they would. All the usual bells
    and whistles you'd expect from a $350 LBS quality bike, mostly around $250. I didn't take too long
    looking at them, but I turned to my wife and said "This is the end."

    So true, so true.

    By the end of November, the owner of my bike shop decided he didn't want to weather another bad turn
    in the economy and sold the building, dissolving the business. We worked together through December
    selling off the last of the stock, mostly on eBay.

    I went to work at a furniture store and let me tell you, that was an unmitigated disaster.

    So, after noodling about for a few weeks, living on savings and my wife's paychecks, I hit the job
    trail for the first time in 10 years. The second place I applied jumped all over me.

    Yes --- Wal-Mart

    It started out as a temporary position, working on a reset crew as my local store was being
    remodeled. Today I picked up my final paycheck and met with the manager about a full time position.

    He already had my original application out. His first question "When you worked for Spokes & Pedals,
    did you assemble bikes?"

    Well, that was the first thing I did there.

    Now, I know these bikes I'll be putting together now are crap (utter crap) but I noted one thing -
    Wal-Mart is going to pay me almost twice what I was making at Spokes & Pedals.

    Maybe I was barking up the wrong tree the whole time

    ---
    __o _`\(,_ Cycling is life, (_)/ (_) all the rest, just details. Nelson Binch =^o.o^=
    http://intergalax.com

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  2. Josh

    Josh Guest

    "Nelson Binch" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > ...well, you know the rest!
    >
    > Now, I know these bikes I'll be putting together now are crap (utter crap) but I noted one thing -
    > Wal-Mart is going to pay me almost twice what I
    was
    > making at Spokes & Pedals.
    >
    > Maybe I was barking up the wrong tree the whole time
    >
    >

    At lease we can have confidence that the forks will be installed facing the correct direction...

    J Seen it before...
     
  3. Nelson Binch

    Nelson Binch Guest

    "Josh" <[email protected]com> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    |
    | "Nelson Binch" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    | news:[email protected]...
    | > ...well, you know the rest!
    | >
    | > Now, I know these bikes I'll be putting together now are crap (utter
    crap)
    | > but I noted one thing - Wal-Mart is going to pay me almost twice what I
    | was
    | > making at Spokes & Pedals.
    | >
    | > Maybe I was barking up the wrong tree the whole time
    | >
    | >
    |
    | At lease we can have confidence that the forks will be installed facing
    the
    | correct direction...

    I've even seen ads from 'Big Box' retailers where the forks were installed backwards, among
    other problems.

    Wal-Mart has wisely dispensed with the building services, opting instead to have a dedicated
    assembler. My store just got lucky to find a real mechanic.

    ---
    __o _`\(,_ Cycling is life, (_)/ (_) all the rest, just details. Nelson Binch =^o.o^=
    http://intergalax.com

    Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.461 / Virus Database: 260 -
    Release Date: 3/10/2003
     
  4. John G

    John G Guest

    Nelson Binch wrote:
    > Now, I know these bikes I'll be putting together now are crap (utter crap) but I noted one thing -
    > Wal-Mart is going to pay me almost twice what I was making at Spokes & Pedals.

    The bitter-sweet irony of it all..... Ohh, the humanity!
     
  5. Ctg

    Ctg Guest

  6. Penny S.

    Penny S. Guest

    ctg wrote:
    > "Nelson Binch" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    >> ...well, you know the rest!
    >
    >
    > Do you get to wear the spiffy vest?

    what I am waiting for is the real story.... I hear nothign but horrible things about union busting,
    forcing people to work off the clock and wage descrepancies between men and women.
    http://www.walmartwatch.com/

    but hey a job's a job.....

    penny
     
  7. Nelson Binch

    Nelson Binch Guest

    "Penny S." <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    | ctg wrote:
    | > "Nelson Binch" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    | > news:[email protected]...
    | >> ...well, you know the rest!
    | >
    | >
    | > Do you get to wear the spiffy vest?
    |
    | what I am waiting for is the real story.... I hear nothign but horrible things about union
    | busting, forcing people to work off the clock and wage descrepancies between men and women.
    | http://www.walmartwatch.com/
    |
    | but hey a job's a job.....

    I've heard the good and the bad about Wal-Mart, and so far I've seen mostly the good. I can't speak
    for the wages, but there were just about as many women on my team as men (in a very physically
    demanding role.) Yes, there was some division of labor within that job, basically the big burly men
    got appropriate assignments.

    As for union busting, I've only run across some of the same anti-union rhetoric that I've seen in
    other jobs I've held. It doesn't matter as much to me, as I'm very anti-union (especially after
    seeing what "Unite" did to Kannapolis.)

    I don't know the details about what has gone on before, but now Wal-Mart wouldn't be caught dead
    trying to make folks work off the clock. I can't even push in more than one buggy from the lot until
    I clock in.

    And, I've only worn the 'spiffy vest' once (at re-grand opening.) Tonight I'll wear a shop apron.

    ---
    __o _`\(,_ Cycling is life, (_)/ (_) all the rest, just details. Nelson Binch =^o.o^=
    http://intergalax.com

    Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.461 / Virus Database: 260 -
    Release Date: 3/10/2003
     
  8. Bill Wheeler

    Bill Wheeler Guest

    On Thu, 13 Mar 2003 12:21:29 -0500, "Nelson Binch" <[email protected]> wrote: [snip]
    >Now, I know these bikes I'll be putting together now are crap (utter crap) but I noted one thing -
    >Wal-Mart is going to pay me almost twice what I was making at Spokes & Pedals.

    Is it always about the bottom line? What happened to your principles? You "sold out". I can't
    believe it! Have you no spine?

    Jack up, homey I'm just funnin wit cha!

    Go for the Mo money, Mo money, Mo money!

    >
    >Maybe I was barking up the wrong tree the whole time

    Yep!

    Peace, Bill The mind serves properly as a window glass rather than as a reflector, that is, the mind
    should give an immediate view instead of an interpretation of the world.
    :-]
     
  9. John Harlow

    John Harlow Guest

    They got a good one with you, Nelson. At least now the bar-ends won't be pointing up towards the
    kid's faces.

    But from what I understand, some of their other employees are quite perceptive as well... For
    example...

    A lady goes into Wal-Mart to buy a rod and reel for her hubbie. She doesn't know which one to get,
    so walks over to the register. A Wal-mart associate is standing there with sunglasses on. She says,
    "Excuse me sir ... can you tell me anything about this rod and reel?" He says, "Ma'am, I'm blind,
    but if you'll drop it on the counter I can tell you about it."

    She didn't believe him, but dropped it on the counter anyway. He said, "That's a 6' graphite rod
    with a Zebco 220 reel and a 10-lb test line ... It's a good all-around rod and reel, and it's $20."

    She says, "It's amazing that you can tell all that just by the sound of it dropping on the counter.
    I think it's what I'm looking for, so I'll take
    it."

    He walks behind the counter to the register. She bends down to get her purse and farts. At first,
    she's embarrassed but then realizes that there's no way he would know it was her because being
    blind, he wouldn't know she was the only person there.

    He rings up the sale and says, "That will be $25.50."

    She says, "But didn't you say it was $20?"

    He says, "Yes ma'am, the rod and reel is $20, the duck call is $3, and the catfish stink bait is
    $2.50. Thank you for shopping Wal-Mart."
     
  10. Nelson Binch

    Nelson Binch Guest

    "Bill Wheeler" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    | On Thu, 13 Mar 2003 12:21:29 -0500, "Nelson Binch" <[email protected]> wrote: [snip]
    | >Now, I know these bikes I'll be putting together now are crap (utter
    crap)
    | >but I noted one thing - Wal-Mart is going to pay me almost twice what I
    was
    | >making at Spokes & Pedals.
    |
    | Is it always about the bottom line? What happened to your principles? You "sold out". I can't
    | believe it! Have you no spine?
    |
    | Jack up, homey I'm just funnin wit cha!
    |
    | Go for the Mo money, Mo money, Mo money!

    The funny thing is; when S&P closed, I decided to walk away from the bike industry and go back to
    being "Just a rider" (as I stated in a thread before my recent hiatus.) I went to Wal-Mart to do
    good, honest work. They assigned me as the assembler based on my experience, so basically the
    industry sort of sucked me back in.

    I went in last night (I just now got home) and discovered the entirety of their bike tool collection
    is a set of cheapo metric sockets, some Stanley tools and one oddball size Park cone wrench (must
    have been accidentally left by the last assembler) I'm going to have to put together a kit of basic
    tools to take with me and do it correctly. It's a good thing my Park repair stand is on casters!

    ---
    __o _`\(,_ Cycling is life, (_)/ (_) all the rest, just details. Nelson Binch =^o.o^=
    http://intergalax.com

    Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.461 / Virus Database: 260 -
    Release Date: 3/10/2003
     
  11. John G

    John G Guest

    Nelson Binch wrote:
    > The funny thing is; when S&P closed, I decided to walk away from the bike industry and go back to
    > being "Just a rider" (as I stated in a thread before my recent hiatus.) I went to Wal-Mart to do
    > good, honest work. They assigned me as the assembler based on my experience, so basically the
    > industry sort of sucked me back in.

    "You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave."
     
  12. Westie

    Westie Guest

    "Nelson Binch" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > ...well, you know the rest!
    >
    > Last fall, I was walking around in a Super Wal-Mart (killing time on a Sunday off) and out from
    > the back roll their very first Schwinn bikes.
    >
    > I knew they were coming, but these 'looked' better than I expected they would. All the usual bells
    > and whistles you'd expect from a $350 LBS quality bike, mostly around $250. I didn't take too long
    > looking at them, but I turned to my wife and said "This is the end."
    >
    > So true, so true.

    I couldn't agree more. K-Mart has been bring in these cheap mountain bikes with "Not for offroad
    use" stickers all over them. They sell them for NZD$249. That's about USD$110. I can't even think of
    the brand but they are everywhere on the streets around here. They must have sold thousands and
    thousands of them... It's either taking a lot of business away from the LBS or providing them with a
    lot as the things fall apart... Sad to see the LBS loosing the sales.

    Westie

    <snip>
    > Now, I know these bikes I'll be putting together now are crap (utter crap) but I noted one thing -
    > Wal-Mart is going to pay me almost twice what I
    was
    > making at Spokes & Pedals.
    >
    > Maybe I was barking up the wrong tree the whole time
    >
    >
    >
    > ---
    > __o _`\(,_ Cycling is life, (_)/ (_) all the rest, just details. Nelson Binch =^o.o^=
    > http://intergalax.com
    >
    > Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.461 / Virus Database: 260
    > - Release Date: 3/10/2003
     
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