Sunday, October 14, 2007

minnesota nice

Do you hear the music from that Saturday Night Live sketch with Dana Carvey that signifies that we are going back in time? I had a thing with a clerk at Target tonight. I was nice enough, and she was rather snarky. Imagine what I might have said if I had said what I really wanted to say:

Listen, missy…

OK, I know that I will lose immediate b***h cred when I start out with “missy” – I instantly become an old Norwegian grandma with sausage ankles and G&H stamps spilling out of my pocket book, but I have to say "missy." I can’t say what I’d really like to say because my girls will hear me. So, again, I say,…

Listen missy, Yes, you the sassy clerk girl with the badly bleached yellow hair and that nasty looking scabby nose piercing that you can’t seem to quit touching, you get to be rude to me when you have 3 kids of your very own that you have just dragged kicking and screaming through Target at the height of candy and costume season because you need a tension rod.

(Stop smirking. That's not what I was looking for.)

You can give me a hard time about “asking” if something is on sale to save a lousy $1 when you have a mortgage to pay and 3 kids who won’t quit growing so you have to keep buying them clothing because in about a day it’s going to be so damned cold that your nose hairs freeze together and those same kids simply can’t be naked any longer. It’s just not cute to let your kids run naked in a 3 foot snow drift.

You can roll your big, fat, peacock-blue-lined eyes and give me the big, fat tssk and huffy and judge the booty that I have lain out on your altar, the conveyor belt, when you feel the powerful urge to redecorate your dining room in the midst of a fever because maybe, just maybe you feel like you have no control over anything else in your life and redecorating is the only thing that will satisfy that urge.

OK, maybe not the ONLY thing, but it's the only thing I really like.

Then, maybe, you can be rude to me.

So, what's your problem? I was pleasant to you. I smiled and spoke respectfully, and asked in not-remotely-condescending tones if something that you'd just rung up was on sale. Apparently that was your cue to put on your "Rude Boots" and lay one one me.

So here’s my real question, sister: Aren’t you getting PAID to be nice to me?

Yeah, I thought so. Then suck it up and suffer for the All Mighty Buck. The rest of us do, and that’s called life. So grow up. And take out that stupid, crusty piercing. You look ridiculous.

I wanted to say that. Instead, I waited patiently under the embarassing blinking light - holding up the nice lady who was buying a mop - while sassy clerk girl overhead paged her manager, who, of course, gave me the correct sale price on the Halloween decoration. I smiled when she rang it up. I thanked her. Then, I calmly asked the girls to join me for an early dinner at the food counter.

"Let's go get a hotdog. What do you say?" I asked.

We all pranced over to the mini-cafeteria, like Santa's reindeer behind the red Target cart sleigh. We waited in line behind an impossibly huge family who took FOREVER to decide that everyone (all 486 parents, kids, cousins, aunties and grandparents who were in visiting from Spokane) wanted solo pan pizzas... Finally, it was our turn.

"We'll have 3 kids meals - all hot dogs. And I'd like the hot dog/fountain drink special.

"Oh, I'm sorry," says the kids with a prematurely low voice. "The hot dog maker is broken."



I think I'd better stay out of Target for awhile.


staceyvee said...

Wow, it would be nice if everyone could just tell when someone needs a little extra kindness. I wish there had been hot dogs for you...

CaROlInE said...

Okay, I'm totally laughing but only because I've totally been there. It's like Murphy's Law or something, if you only need 1 quick lil something, that's the time when (a)everybody melts down in the store (b)you didn't forget your wallet but one of those short people aka children, removed the credit cards or (c)they don't have it. Seriously. here's a hug.

Sue said...

I can't stand snotty retail people. Listen, you make $9 per hour, please don't give me attitude. Urg.

by Johanna Brandvik said...

Retail rage, not much different than road rage. I hope that you and the "team member" both had a long sigh afterwards followed by a relaxing evening at home. I'm glad you made it out okay. Target can be dicey! And I hope you're feeling better! :)

Rose said...

What is going on? The world seems to be conspiring to see if our positive attitude towards life can hold up under all kinds of tests!! Thank you so much for your very kind words and I'm so sorry your Target experience was less than ideal. You are definitely due for a wonderful week. Barnes & Noble cafe clerks bring out the retail rage in me, btw. Maybe it is the multiple piercings; I think it must hurt them and make them cranky?

Angela WD said...

Ugh, I just went through one of those a week or 2 ago. I struggle to think of the right thing to say at the moment, but later in the car, I started thinking about what I should have done instead of what I did...if you want, read about it at

lisa {milkshake} said...

Ya know... Why do people work retail when they really don't like interacting with the public? It's one of my pet peeves.

JustRandi said...

I agree with Rose. I'm betting her piercings were excessively itchy and therefore she was a tad "short". At least that's what I want to think. I WANT people to be good at heart.
Poor you - to be the victim of scab-rage!