Saturday, October 30, 2010

sleep shopping

"cannn iiiiii get some help overrrr herrrre?"

I turn around and she is so close that our sleeves are touching,prompting me to wonder where "over here" is? I also notice that she hasn't run a comb through her hair since last week and is carrying a $10,000. Hermes handbag.I'm just sayin'.

She talks in a breathy,slow,druggy voice.

"Do you have any kitchen rugs? My husband and I need a kitchen rug. We need something nice to walk on." (I suppose she means besides the live in help.)

"Well,we have these handknotted wool rugs,which are beautiful in a traditional or eclectic home."

"NNNNNNoooooo,we have modern. Everything is black and silver and gray. It's very colllllld,you know?" (I suppose she means just like her husband is,gray and cold.)

"Okay,well,we have these graphic polypropelene rugs that are modern."

"Whhhhhaaaattt? What is polypropeleeeeeennnnneeee????"

"It's a plastic and they dye it and weave it into rugs. It's great for outdoors or a kitchen because well,it's plastic,you can wipe it off with a damp sponge."(note,you would not believe how many times in my career I have uttered that exact sentence,you can wipe it off with a damp sponge. more on that later.)

"But can you walk on it?"

Yes! They are called rugs! We are selling them as rugs! It is on the floor in front of you right now!!!!! Just like a rug!!! Are you awake? Are you sleep shopping?

"Yes,you can walk on it."

"Is that weird?" (what a bothersome question that is.It's subjective. If you think it's weird then it is.I once had a woman who was handling a fabric with her hands ask me,"Is this soft?")

"No it's not weird."

"But it's plastic."

If it's good enough to name your favorite surgery after,then it's good enough for your precious feet.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Holy Sheet

"this bedding is so great,you guys should really run with it."
"thanks,it IS really nice."
"no,but,I mean,you really should push this,it would do well."
"yeah,we sell over thirty different's on promotion right now."
"well, i want to take it but i can't possibly carry it with me,i have a hair appointment.can i come back later for it? will it be here?"
"i'll put it on hold for you."
"great,i''ll come back later,with great looking hair!!

(the word "great" is overused in retail.)

"you know,i didn't even know this store existed. i mean,i come to this neighborhood all the time. i shop in the shops all the time. but i never knew you were should advertise."
"oh,we do.glad you found us."(not true.)
"i love the look of things,the style of the really should run with this,i think it would be really succesful." (we've been here for years,the brand is 10 years old and this is our 11th store.)
"NO! i mean it." (i did say thanks,right? that is an affirmation.i didn't say,no,that's a ridiculous notion madam!! jesus,take the bedding out of your ears,lady! some people are so completely self absorbed,it's fascinating.on top of frustrating.)
"but anyway,the bedding is gorgeous,you really should run with it."

i just have one is "run with it" different from conceptualizing it,designing it,sourcing it,ordering it,shipping it,merchandising it,advertising it and selling it???????

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

good as gold

"lemme ask ya sumthin',the parisian mirra ya got on the website,is it nice?"

" yes,it's very nice."

"have you seen it?'


"so,it's nice.doesn't look cheap,right?"

"no,not cheap."

"so,you have it in the store there?"

"yes,we do."

"your store?"

"yessir,our store."

"so if i came in there i could see it , right?"

"that's right."

"lemme ask ya this,it says it's antique gold. is it a yellow gold or like a brownish gold? does it look cheap? does it look like real gold? it says antique gold,does it look good/"

'yes,it's a beautiful mirror. it's hard to describe color over the phone,but antiqued generally means,worn or soft."

"oh so it looks dirty or sumthin?"

"mmnnn,no,not dirty,antiqued."

"so it looks good,right?"

"yes,it's very pretty."

"i'm gonna put it in my guest bathroom. i just redid the whole thing. it's totally contemporary,you know? it's got white tile,and like a pumpkin colored wall,but it's a finish you know,like,tuscan. and the faucets are italian. and there's green accents."

(Hold on a minute. That sounds disgusting. Really bad.I hope he finishes up this description soon. I'm starting to feel nauseous.)

"wow,that sounds really pretty,really nice. i'm sure the mirror will be perfect."

'well i'm gonna come see it. i live in jersey but i come to the city like all the time."


'are you there everyday?"

"no,they gove me two days off a week."

'oh,ok,well i'll be in."


Sunday, October 24, 2010


"Do you happen to have any small plastic trays?" the elderly gentleman asked me.

"Why ,yes,we have this 20"x20" black lacquered campaign tray. It is $138.00"

"NO NO NO that won't DO!"

"You might try shopping at Bed ,Bath and Beyond."

"You know what you can do with Bed,Bath and Beyond,don't cha?"

"No sir,I don't."


"Have a nice day,sir,you're welcome."

"I DIDN'T SAY THANK YOU!!!!!!!" He implores as he storms out of the store.

Saturday, October 23, 2010


First she called me over to the bathmat she was holding. It was ivory in color,woven,$48.00. "What will happen to this if I bleach it?" she asked.

"What will happen if you bleach it?",I replied,hoping she would hear,from my parroting back to her,that the question was inane and was making me tired already.She didn't.
"It will get bleach spots and the color will be,um,bleached out of it."
"Then what should I do to clean it?"
"You should wash it. In a washing machine with laundry detergent."
"What about bleach?"
" Um,use color safe bleach."
"Now,tell me,does color safe bleach work?"
Ohhhhhh lady,no,it's the biggest hoax of the century.They really screwed you over this time. This is just the problem she was waiting for! People want cheese knives and bathmats,yes,but people also know that as they shop,they can work out their craziness on you,as long as you are wearing a nametag.
she buys the mat.
Now we move over to the mother of pearl entertaining collection,one of our biggest sellers.
She picks up a little mother of pearl and stainless steel knife from a set of 4 for $38 and says "do these cheese knives work?"
"um,do they WORK?"
"yes,some of them don't."
(how many cheese knives have you owned? how many have disappointed you? how many have been so superior that they have ruined the chances for your other cheese knives to shine?)
"They......were designed for their intended purpose,yes." (patience begins to strain,my nametag begins to sweat a little)
We spend the next 30 minutes unwrapping boxes of these poor little knives so that she can choose the "most perfect" ones. I hate perfectionists,nothing is ever good enough,which just means that they feel they are never good enough,and you can never be good enough,just like the innocent little cheese knife,it's handle lovingly decorated in the Phillipines with a beautiful pearly white shell that came from God or the creative power of the universe,whatever you want to call it,whatever book you read.God made m.o.p. so it's already perfect,lady. Who are you to critique what god and the Phillipines made?
Your total is $94.87.