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Ann Cibauskas was ready to get the worst of it.
She and her three kids had spent the weekend lying around in the living room of her Florida home, running up a record-breaking $3,022 bill at the Walmart a mile away. With their electric bill, groceries and $290 cable bill, the bill topped $4,000.
The one thing Cibauskas hadn’t done? Plant a $200 gardening budget on her shopping list.
On a March morning in 2008, the mother of three pushed their shopping cart toward the checkout counter.
She dropped her cell phone into the basket and put the cart next to the cash register.
At that moment, she noticed that the hairs on the back of her neck stood up. Something was different. She had caught a glimpse of the cashier behind the counter and had noticed an unusual facial feature: Two rows of nose hairs on the woman’s upper lip.
“That was a weird thing to see,” she recalled. “I said to my husband: ‘Something is wrong with that cashier.’”
After the Cibauskas family left the store, they drove down the road and pulled over to chat.
Cibauskas sat with her family as they struggled to decide whether they should go back to Walmart.
“No, we just went to the other one,” said Cibauskas’s daughter, 11-year-old Aiyana.
But that’s not what Cibauskas wanted to do.
“My husband said: ‘What do you want to do?’” she said. “‘You want to sit and wait?’ And I said: ‘I don’t know, I think we should just go.’”
So the family rolled out of the parking lot, headed back to the store and Cibauskas walked back in. The cashier recognized her immediately.
“She came over, shook my hand and asked me how my family was,” Cibauskas said. “And I said: ‘Oh, they’re fine, they’re just like you!’”
The cashier smiled at her.
“That’s how we knew she was crazy,” Cibauskas said.
After that encounter, Cibauskas and her family decided to steer clear of Walmart, which they decided was cursed. Cibauskas decided to stop buying her gas at the gas station by the store. She also stopped picking up her daughter’s prescriptions at the nearby Walgreens. When the family bought groceries at the local Publix, they found it difficult to shop. Cibauskas remembers a grocery clerk pulling her aside and insisting that it wasn’t normal for them to hand over a bag of cherries without paying for them.
“I wanted to see if we had a video of this because I have never seen it happen anywhere else,” Cibauskas said.
When she pulled the family’s $3,022 Walmart receipt home and looked through the account history, she realized that she had been spending more than $100 per month at the store.
She pulled out some old photographs from her cellphone. The images showed that while Cibauskas hadn’t dropped in on a single other cashier since the incident, her pattern of spending was remarkably similar.
“I never really noticed this until that one morning,” she said.
Like any decent small-business owner, Cibauskas wasn’t trying to sell her family on the merits of physical confrontations.
But since that day, Cibauskas said, the cashier has avoided her, Cibauskas no longer leaves anything but pennies on the checkstand and she stopped giving Walmart cashiers checks for their salary.
“In the 10 years I’ve been here, I’ve never seen anyone with those hairs on their lip,” she said.
As Cibauskas was preparing for a recent physical confrontation with the cashier, she was not only angry at the people who changed her shopping experience.
“It’s the laziness of Walmart. They don’t want to train their employees to be professional,” she said.
Earlier this year, the Food and Drug Administration was forced to issue the first-ever recalls of pet food containing antibiotics used in livestock feed. Since 2009, the agency has recalled more than 22 million pounds of dry dog and cat food, according to the agency’s website. The agency is currently investigating the production of some 70 types of pet food as potential sources of contamination, according to the FDA’s website. The foods were produced in California and Georgia, but many of the products were shipped all over the world.
The agency has received more than 120 reports of illnesses in pets after consuming food produced with the suspect drugs. The largest recall to date was a 28-million-pound recall in 2010.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has