As I drove into Memphis last night the rain was coming down in sheets. Unfortunately the wipers on the truck that I am driving are awful. I asked someone this morning about where I might get some replacements. The immediately reply was Wal-Mart! Later today I think I am either driving either through or near Bentonville, AR. I have mulled over exiting from the interstate and making a commercial pilgrimage to the Mecca of merchandising.
About ten days ago I was reading in the N. Y. Times an article that talked about how Wal-Mart collects terabytes of data daily. After hurricane Charley, the Wal-Mart folks in anticipation of the next hurricane went back looked at their data and concluded that the two most profitable and fastest selling items were beer and pop-tarts. Trucks were immediately dispatched to all their stores in the path of the hurricane and the basic needs of Americans were met.