I KNOW that looks like Clara Bow in her definitive film role in the silent classic It (1927) in that picture there, but it's not. It's actually me back when I used to be a spunky shopgirl, not at all above positioning myself provocatively on the desk of the handsome son of my rich-as-God boss in the hopes of trapping him into marrying me and THEN spending my evenings dancing the night away in smoke-filled dens of iniquity that we used to call 'speakeasies.' Hey, don't hate me because I was this glamorous even as a shopgirl...
Anyway, I'm sure we can all agree how amazing working retail is. In what other industry can you get paid under $10 an hour to deal with the most infuriatingly annoying and mind-blowingly stupid people on Earth? I'm pretty sure the only other industry for producing such rapturous joy in its employees would be food service, which...been there, done that, as well, people--in the SAME JOB, no less. Alas, friends, recently the Emmy half of your Pair of Salonnières has landed a job outside of the retail arena. As a fond farewell to my life as a shopgirl, I have decided to share with you, in a series of posts, some misty water-colored memories of my days working in a small independent bookstore/coffee shop. Don't be jealous that I got to deal with people like this guy:
Customer: Hey there, I'm lookin' for some kinda tea... It's called like, baron somethin'...it's uh...EARL GREY--That's what it's called. Y'all got some of that?
Me: Yes, we do. It's there on the counter in the yellow packet.
Customer: NO, honey, no. I SAID GREY. Not yellow. It's grey. EARL GREY.
Me: ...Sir, it is Earl Grey tea. This brand just comes in a yellow packet.
Customer: No, it comes in a GREY packet. EARL GREY. You're not listening to me.
[I take a packet out and hold it up in front of his face.]
Me: Sir, this IS Earl Grey tea. See here where it says 'Earl Grey Tea'?
Customer: ...well, that's decaf. That's why it's in a yellow packet. I need regular and obviously y'all don't have any.
Me: ...No...it isn't decaf, sir. It's regular. It doesn't say decaf on the packaging, so it isn't decaf.
Customer: Well, then, why is it yellow?
Me: Because that's the way this brand packages it.
Customer: ...Okay, I'll take a cup of that. Y'all got any honey?
[I make his tea and hand him a brand new bottle of honey and he proceeds to pour probably a third of the bottle in his 16 oz cup of tea. On the way out the door, he calls back to me.]
Customer: I'm glad y'all had honey because I'm type II diabetic, so I gotta watch my sugar. HAHA! See y'all later!
Uh...I know. I hope he had some kind of one-touch 911 service on his phone because I'm pretty sure the amount of honey he put in his tea could have sent him into a diabetic coma at any moment. Still, amazing. So, dear readers (if there are any of you left), feel free to comment with your own incredible adventures in retail and food service, because I KNOW you have them. Hello, people.