Tales From Retail: Let’s Get Ready To Rumble….

Picture it: NYC, 2011. Late Night.

I’m finishing up my closing duties, and I’m on my way back from the bathroom when two men streak past me. One of them has a full garbage bag slung over his shoulder.

I already know what this means, so I head upstairs as quickly as I can to alert the loss prevention (LP) on duty so they can file a report.

Didn’t seem to be a need, because by the time I made it up the stairs, there was a standoff.

There was a third man involved, who upon seeing things were getting just a little bit too hot for comfort just kind of strolled out of the door.

The second man, who had nothing in his hands, was pleading with LP to let his friend go. His friend had the full garbage bag of all manner of medicines, whitening strips, you name it.

Yes, people steal these things. They also steal makeup testers, because they’re gross. They’ll steal YOU if they could figure out how to do it so you won’t know. It’s that hard out in these streets.

Anyway.

The thing is, we can really only hold the person who has the product, so second dude is pleading with LP to let first dude go.

“Man, you got your stuff back. Let him go,” he said.

LP wasn’t having it. “I advise you to go ’bout your business before I have you arrested, too.”

And the argument was starting to escalate.

It went from pleas to cursing, until I saw the first punch thrown. I ran to call 911 (not knowing they’d already been called) and did my best to calm down the customers in line. I remember there was a family of French tourists, mom, dad, and little boy. The little boy, who had to have been about 11, was so thoroughly enjoying what was going on. He looked like most folks do when they’re watching an action movie: eyes so big you could see the whites all around. His mom was petrified (rightly so), and kept trying to drag him towards the back of the store as he (and his dad) kept trying to inch towards the front to get a better look.

Meanwhile, LP and first dude are still going at it: LP trying to hold him till the cops got there, and dude trying to break free. LP is continually saying: “Dude, you’re going to jail. Stop fighting me,” until..

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Seriously, before any of us knew what was happening, LP had flipped this dude on his back in the floor. “Now STAY DOWN, I said!”

Whoa.

My reaction:

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It was dead silent for a few seconds as we all processed what we’d just saw.

Dude was too shocked to keep fighting, and about 5 minutes later, the police walked in and arrested him.

I keep telling y’all: retail is dangerous. I was really trying my best to keep the customers out of the way. Let’s be real: this could have gone south real quick, and when you have customers more involved in trying to see what’s happening rather than getting out of the way ( *side eye emoji*) it makes life more difficult for us to make sure folks stay safe.

Hope y’all’s week is going well so far! See you next week for another installment of Tales from Retail. :D

Stories

Fatshion Friday: Fierce and Casual

So, when we last left off, I showed y’all some of the awesome fashion that was shown at last weeks Full Figured Fashion Week Indie Show.

For once, I actually got a chance to snag some pics of my own fashion.

:D

So, for the fashion show, I went with classic black. I know, I normally don’t do black unless I’m at work, but this dress had been hanging in my closet collecting dust since January (please don’t judge me), so I figured I’d give it some shine. I paired it with a nice neutral eye, fro picked out and pinned up, and my favorite red lip:

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Dress: ASOS Curve (Sold Out), Shoes: Payless

Now, I had another few pictures of the dress that included more of that super cute bow detail, but let me tell y’all…see, I didn’t check the sheerness of that dress. So, slightly too sheer dress plus insanely bright lighting (for pics!) equals you can see allllllll my shaper and bra, y’all. Just, dammit, man. I think I would have done better to do a black shaper instead of a nude one, but yeah. Don’t be me, y’all. Check that BEFORE you leave your house. This picture was taken away from the theatre lighting near the red carpet, so you can’t see anything.

So, I also got to attend CurvyCon this past weekend as well. I love the idea of shopping and panels and wonderful bloggers in one place. In theory. In practice…well…it was loud, crowded, and not enough seats. I did have fun for the time I was there, and got to meet some awesome folks as well as touch base with some blogger boos. :)

Since I knew I’d be doing a lot of pictures, I didn’t go super fancy. I just wanted to be comfy. So I did sneakers and a cute skirt, and kept my face natural.

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Sneaks from JustFab.

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Skirt from Eloquii (check out the Midi Skirts here!)/Shirt from FeminineFunk

I had a great time last weekend, and looked fabulous doing it!

Hair Makeup Looks Retail Therapy Reviews

Full Figured Fashion Week: Indie Fashion Show

So, last week was Full Figured Fashion Week (FFF Week hereafter), and while I didn’t get a chance to participate as fully as I did last year because of work, I still got a chance to enjoy one of my favorite parts of the week: the Indie Fashion Show.

Not familiar with what an Indie Fashion Show is? Think like the brands that you never hear about. Brands I knew I wasn’t even familiar with until I attended my first FFF Week. Brands that aren’t featured on ASOS or Ashley Stewart or Lane Bryant, but are just as avant garde and stylish. Beautifully unique, like we are as curvy women.

Gotta love that.

And trust me, the fashion did not disappoint. Let’s get to it, shall we?

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Eyani Couture

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Ask Fashion

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I’Me (yep, that’s the name–pronounced “I’m Me”!)

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I’Me

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I’Me

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I’Me

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TruDiva Designs (Veronica L, the creator, won Designer of the Year!)

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TruDiva Designs

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Just Curves

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Sue Rock Originals

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Easily my favorite look of the night! By Serita Bell.

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Serita Bell

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Tia Lyn Lingerie

I know, I know. Y’all want to know what I wore, right? Never fear, I got y’all on Friday with not one outfit, but two! Stay tuned. :)

Fashion Show

Tales From Retail: *Facepalm*

Y’all, sometimes the stuff I deal with at work doesn’t even warrant a full post of its own, just because it’s short and full of “what the actual hell?!” moments.

So, I decided to compile the best of the best here.

A lot of this is something that retail workers both former and current will deal with and recognize. Now, don’t think that if you’ve asked these questions, we employees are judging you. It all depends on your nature. If you’re nice, we’re nice. If you’re not nice, we’re still nice, but we talk about you when you leave. Standard operating procedure.

1.”How do I get out?”

How did you get in? I always have to wonder about this type of thing. Like…were you just not paying attention or…?

2. “Why don’t you have this cream/yogurt/shampoo I like? Why do you take away the things I love?!”

This one doesn’t bother me so much because I am a consumer too. You fall in love with a product and it disappears. But please know that WE don’t control that. It’s the people above us. Yelling at us does not make it magically appear. Yelling at corporate might, though, so email them your concerns! They’ll listen to y’all before they will us.

3. *yells in language I don’t speak*

This will never make me understand your native tongue. It just won’t. Now, if you have a picture of what you want, ok. But I keep Google Translate (problematic as it is, it helps) on my phone for just such a reason. We’ll work this out. But please, don’t yell at me.

4. “But you can get this in Canada!”

Canada is not America. They have better healthcare.

5. “You’re really pretty.” *leery stare*

Eww. Don’t be that person. It’s gross. We’re never going to give you our number. Never.

6. *flings money on counter*

Y’all. Y’ALL. Don’t do this. Please, hand me the money. Flinging it on the counter is rude as all the hell.

7. “So, I’m bringing this back because it didn’t work for me. It broke me out.”

*looks at unopened product* “Oh, I see. I’m so sorry, let me get you a refund.”

You don’t have to lie, y’all. You don’t have to lie! The majority of retailers will require us to take it back. We’re asking the issue so that we can do two things: 1. tell the company so they can be aware and 2. figure out if we can sell it or damage it out. That’s all.

8. “Why y’all prices so high?!”

*long sigh* We don’t set the prices at store level, y’all. Corporate does.

9. “Oh, well *insert retailer here* has it for cheaper.”

What we want to say is: “Then go to said retailer.” But that’s rude, so I’ll just say see the answer to number 8.

10. “Do you work here?”

This question irks my nerve. 9 times out of 10, I’m in the middle of a task, in uniform with a pen and notebook/pricing gun/duster in my hand and wearing a name badge. You reckon folks come off the street and do that for free? What in heaven’s name? Now, I could see if I’m standing with say, my cell phone in my hand and no other indicator of working there (that’s when I’m on break. And somehow EVERYONE knows I work there) then I understand asking the question. But otherwise? Yes. Yes, I do. One day I fear I’ll be having a bad day and say I don’t just to see the reaction.

Starting off your week with a smile! I have tons of fashion to show you this week. See you tomorrow!

 

Stories

Nail Adventures: Smooches

So, I have been such a social butterfly these last couple of weeks. I’ve actually been venturing out on my days off and meeting people and brunching and so on.

Who AM I?

:D

Not for nothing, it’s been quite enjoyable. As an introvert who is quite socially awkward, some of the situations I put myself in have pushed me to come out of my shell a bit. I’ve noticed the more I do it, the easier it gets. I find that getting out is enjoyable, but I allow myself to duck out when being around too many people overwhelms me.

Sidebar: um, y’all? If you have introverted friends, do not tell them this is how they “fix it”. They aren’t broken. Just, FYI.

Anyway.

So, I went to brunch with my dissertation writing friend this past weekend, and I decided to do my nails in pink. Pink isn’t usually a focus color (I like it as an accent) but since I was wearing an all blue outfit I thought it would lend a nice contrast.

Grabbed me some of my trusty Sally Hansen Nail Polish strips, a bright pink, and glitter (because of course), and…

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This might be the most frou frou manicure I’ve ever done. It may also be one of my favorites! Alright, the nail polish strips are called Giving Lip, and the pink is Essie’s Madison Ave-hue. The glitter overlay is Julep’s Hartleigh.

Definitely not something that I’d do when it isn’t say, Valentine’s Day or something (that’s the first time I wore this strip design), but I love it so. Pink, sparkly happy!

Dedicated to my little niece, who made her debut this past weekend. I’d done this mani before she got here, but how appropos is this pink? :)

Nail Adventures

Tales From Retail: Harassment

Picture it: NYC, 2011. It’s the beginning of rush hour, and I’m just finishing up a display. A man approaches me and asks me for some Clearasil.

I think this is a normal, run of the mill customer with a normal, run of the mill question.

Y’all, I can’t even begin to explain how not normal this interaction was about to get.

So, I take him to the Clearasil, and he asks me a few more questions about skin care, and I answer them. He tells me that I’m pretty, and smiles at me.

Aww, I think. How nice of him! I say thank you, and ask if there’s anything else I can assist him with.

Y’all, I should have learned my lesson the LAST time I asked that question, but customer service. *side eye emoji*

Anyway. He says no, so I’m assuming we’re done here, and I head back to my center and I start looking for something in my desk. While I’m rummaging through the drawers, I feel…a hand.

It ain’t MY hand.

But it’s a hand.

And…it’s around my waist…

And my back is to the person trying to feel me up on the sales floor…

And I turn around…

And y’all? It was that damned customer I’d just been helping.

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Y’all…before I’d realized it, I’d said “What the actual fuck?! Don’t put your hands on me, I don’t know you!”

I don’t normally snap, y’all. I tend to be calm, cool, and collected even in the most ridiculous of moments, but when I tell y’all he almost caught my left and my box cutter? Woo, lawd, have mercy. And I was so loud. Loud enough that one of the assistant managers came running over to see what was going on.

The manager comes around the corner to me standing with my fists balled up looking like I’m about to drag dude all through the store (oh, and please believe I was. Cameras be damned.) and puts two and two together.

“Sir, I spoke to you downstairs about harassing the women in the store. You will NOT come up here and harass my staff!”

I’m still ready to pounce. I hear the manager, but I’m still ready.

“He comes any closer to me, I’m flipping him over the banister,” I say. I really was, too. The manager steps in front of me. Not to shield me, but to protect dude.

Dude: “Well, I just wanted to let the young lady know I was interested…”

Manager: “Out. Now. Before I move out the way.”

I have my box cutter in my hand now. Please move, boss. PLEASE.

The guy finally gets the hint and walks out of the store.

Manager looks at me. I look back.

“You know, if you would have swung at him, you could have been fired.”

I hear everyone’s jaw dropping. Mine did too. And yes, you read that right. Retailers are so worried about being sued, had I swung at him I could have been fired. Honestly, subconsciously,  that’s probably why I yelled as opposed to throwing hands. Sigh.

I never saw him again. But that day is when I decided it would be best to keep a box cutter on me at all times.

Safety first. :)

Stories

Nail Adventures: Chillin’

I feel like it’s been forever since I had the time to do a Nail Adventure! My nails have been pretty wretched lately, actually. Part of it was me doing some cleaning at work and dropping a sign.

Instead of letting the sign fall on the floor, I caught it.

Which broke three nails to the meat. It wasn’t pretty. I had to bandage up for a couple of days.

Now, they’re starting to grow back nicely, but for safety’s sake I’ve been keeping them short, and to let them breathe, I’ve kept them largely unpolished.

Yesterday, since I decided to do my usual writing outside instead of in my house, I decided to do a quick manicure. It’s in a pale shade (!!!!) because it gives the illusion of longer nails and it hides nicks pretty well (this would be why you see so many celebs with pale, neutral nails). So, what did I do?

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So, the pale coral is OPI’s Chillin Like A Villain and the glitter is Julep’s Paris.

You knew there had to be glitter somewhere, right? Because this is me we’re talking about. :)

I’d had the OPI color in my box for a while and never used it because pale and neutral, which we all know I tend to be allergic to. But I got a tan while I was out doing the AIDS walk last week (it went awesome and I was OMG TIRED but I did it!), and I noticed how lovely the color looked against my skin. So I went for it.

And yes, I can admit I like it. The simple sparkle (which is over bare nails) just gives it enough oomph for me to not feel like it’s boring. Very classic glam.

I would caution that this color is also pretty sheer. Had I more time I would have done a third coat to get it as opaque as I prefer (that’s two coats above.

All in all, a success!  :)

Nail Adventures