Sunday, August 28, 2011

Always Check The Lower Level

Sometimes there are moments in my life that I realize are perfectly good metaphors even if I don't intend them to be.  Today was one of those examples.

In the town I work in, there was some fancy-schmancy car show.  Which meant that there was ZERO parking in the garage behind the store.

Let me rephrase that:  people assumed that there was ZERO parking in the garage.  Because the upper two levels were all full.

I pulled in the garage and watched people frantically drive in circles looking for a spot.  Or stalking some poor soul as they walked to put something back in their car.

When I got into work, my boss asked me if I had any trouble parking.  "Of course not," I shrugged, "I parked in the lower level.  Nobody ever parks there."

One of my coworkers walked in and apologized for being late because they couldn't find parking.  They watched people circling and drove away to park waaaaaaay far away from the store.

I laughed to myself and realized that when you are watching other people go in circles or want to run the opposite direction, turn left.  There's probably parking in the lower level.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Stories from the Front Lines of Retail: How You Can Irritate Me Immediately

So, it's a busy day at work a couple days ago.  I'm out in the front of the store and the phone rings.  Naturally, I answer it.

"Store Where I Work, this is Amanda.  How may I help you?"

"Yes, I just have a simple question.  Do you have sweet paprika?"  Now, I should have had a clue here that this was not going to be "simple".  Nobody prefaces a simple question with saying it's simple.

"Yes.  I have Hungarian sweet, California sweet, and Spanish smoked sweet."

"How much is it?"

"Well, that depends on how much you get."

"I want about a cup's worth."

"Alright, that will be about $8."

"Okay.  Is it cheaper if I don't get in the jar?"

"Yeah, I can put it in a plastic bag.  It'll be $1.75 less."

"But you don't have a bag I can put it in?"

For a brief second I pull the phone away from ear and look at the phone, blinking.  "Well, I can put it in a jar but, as I said, that is more expensive."

"I understand that.  So you can't put it in a bag."

"I can, it's a plastic bag."  Maybe you can see where this is headed.  I couldn't.  I was purely confused.

Exasperated sigh from her, "I heard you.  So there's no bag."

I bite my tongue to avoid screaming, "I have a glass jar or a plastic bag.  It zips closed and is plastic.  They come in various sizes."

"Honey, that's called a baggie.  Say it with me: baggie."

"As I said I can put it in a bag-"


"Bag.  Or a glass jar."

Loud, unnecessary sigh, "I'm trying to avoid plastic."

"I have the glass jar-"

"You don't have a paper bag to but it in."

"Not that's food grade, no."

"What if I bring in my own container?"

"Unfortunately, I can't fill something that came from outside the store.  Health department regulations."

Another LOUD sigh, "You don't even have a paper cup?"

"Not that's going to hold a cup's worth.  I have Dixie cups."

HUUUUUUUUUUUGE sigh, "FINE.  I'm just going to have to think this through and contemplate my options since you are so unwilling to help me.  Is there a manager there I can speak to?"

"Actually, ma'am, I am the manager here."

Long pause.  "Well, I'm still going to have to think this through."

And she hung up.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Things Not To Do At Movie Theaters

Apparently, we need a refresher on how to behave when watching a movie in public.

Folks - it's not the same as when you're at home, okay?

1) Cellphones.For all that is holy, put it away.  Got that?  Put.  It.  Away.  I don't care if you're checking a quick text message. The theater is dark and that bright screen is searing my retinas.  If it's that important, go outside.  Oh.  And if you forgot to put your phone on will be flogged.  And humiliated.

2) Keep Your Shoes On.  Good God, man, I do not need to see and/or smell that.  Especially if you're sitting next to me.  Look, I get the need to feel comfortable.  I do.  However...if you can't go for about 2 hours or so without taking off your shoes - that is a serious problem my friend.  One that should be addressed.  Immediately.

3.) Sit Still.  This is only exempt if I am at Pikachu Meets My Little Ponys At Disneyworld On A Magical Rainbow Of Bubbles And Candy.  At that point I can expect to be surrounded by a gazillion hyper, sugar fueled children.  If I am sitting in a theater waiting to watch a non-children movie, sit still.  Don't mimic the horses galloping by pretending you're riding one.  I don't care if you're 12, your parents should have taught you how to behave in public.

4.) Open Your Snacks BEFORE The Movie Starts.  Okay.  So this one isn't  a crime so much as a courtesy.  I know it's not your fault that they have sealed your chocolate covered cheese doodles in the world's loudest plastic.  But you are aware of this when every time you move the damn bag it breaks the sound barrier several times.  Just do everyone a favor, and open it beforehand.

Please, keep all of this in mind.  And, if you don't, do not be surprised if my foot goes through the back of your chair next time you're at the multiplex.  You've been warned.