Tales From Retail: They Don’t Pay Me Enough For This…

Picture it, NYC, 2012. It’s a fairly warm afternoon, right around that elusive time we used to call “spring”, but now is just that week of “not snow” and “not hell” outdoors.

The lunchtime rush is starting to ramp up, and I’m busily recording some sales in the notebook when I notice a gentleman walking in the front doors. Nothing too unusual, but it was, again, fairly warm and this man has on a puffer jacket like it’s 30 below out.

Meh, to each his own, so I go back to work as the man darts downstairs.

I then hear the elevator doors open, and I see the man coming out. He looks around. I stop and look up, thinking he may need help. Before I can ask, he turns to beeline for the door, and some formula drops out the back of his coat.

Sigh.

Listen, y’all. I’ll be the first to admit times have been hard for everybody as of late. Folks do come into the store to steal makeup and, like, 5 hour energy and such (that’s a story for another day), but you do have those folks who have to steal food to survive. I don’t blame the folks put in that position. I blame the system that puts the folks in that position. What makes me feel doubly bad is if I see them taking food, I’m supposed to stop them.

Even if it’s obvious they’re hungry. Even if they’re just grabbing a $1 bag of chips. I’m supposed to stop them. It’s heartbreaking, and more often than not, I’ll just buy the item for them, cause folks have to eat, right? For the most part, I don’t see it as much anymore. I don’t know if it’s a sign that things are getting better economically or that the thieves are getting savvier, but I try not to think about it too much.

Anyway.

I see this formula drop out the back of his coat and immediately think this man is likely taking this for his child at home. Because I’m big-hearted like that.

He drops this formula and instead of leaving it (because there are cameras that may see him), he picks it up and decides to try and take it out of the store (in full view!) in his hands. Now, I have to stop him.

Me: “You, in the coat! Put it down.”

Customers are now staring at him, and since they don’t have the same vantage point I do, they don’t notice the canister in his hand. One woman goes: “Why is she screaming at him? He doesn’t have anything!”

Him: *stares* *puts formula in basket near door*

As he turns to walk out, another canister drops out of his coat. Well, damn.

Listen. You’re a parent, and you have a hungry baby that needs food that you are unable to afford? You steal ONE canister of formula. I shake my head. Now I know he’s likely got the whole shelf in that coat, and…

I walk up to the front door. “Give me the rest of it. Now.”

Him: “That’s all I got, man.”

He tries to walk out the store again, and TWO MORE canisters drop out. If you’ve been counting, we’re up to four now.

Me: “One more time, give me all of it. Now.”

At this point, one of the (HUGE) stock guys comes out and stands next to me. “Did you hear her? Give it back!”

He’s scared now. “I don’t have any more, man!” And tries to run.

At which point THREE more canisters drop out the coat. Passerby on the street brought them in to me (one guy had been watching the whole thing from outside, and he told me he was ready to tackle if the thief had tried to come at me. That made me smile, cause most folks don’t care.)

So, grand total of formula the guy tried to swipe? Seven canisters at about $27 a pop. Sigh.

Moral of the story? If you MUST steal…be wise about it.

Happy Monday, y’all!

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Stories

I Guess You’ve Wondered Where I’ve Been…

I searched to find the love within…

I came back to let you know…

I got a thing for you…and I can’t let it go…

I love that song so much. (If you don’t know it, I’m going to put up a link so you can hear it. πŸ™‚ )

Anyway.

I know, I know. Feels like I fell off the face of the Earth for a minute there, huh? I missed y’all! πŸ˜€

I have so much that I was working on, I had to step away for a bit to make sure I could focus on at least one project at a time. Now, the big project isn’t yet finished, but I’ve made enough leeway on it that I can come back to y’all and keep doing the other aspect of what I love most: giving y’all all of the fashion info and a healthy dose of self-confidence.

So, let me give y’all a few updates:

Regularly scheduled posts will resume on Monday (and yes, Tales from Retail will be back!) I am going to try to stick to three times a week for y’all so you don’t miss me too much.

I will be adding a new feature (coming second week of September) called Fatshionista Cooks. If you follow me on Instagram (and if not, click here to do so, if you wish) you’ve likely seen a lot of my dishes I’ve made and maybe not so much of me in makeup. And the reason for that is…

I’M WRITING A COOKBOOK! For those closest to me, they’re all, this girl’s been writing this cookbook for EONS and we haven’t seen a blessed recipe yet! And that’s true. But as of late I have really been making some headway on organizing my recipes and doing proper testing. I want to share some of the recipes with y’all ahead of the book, because y’all are awesome and have rocked with me for so long. And because each recipe has a story behind it, you’ll be thoroughly entertained…because, well, we know how most of my stories go!

I also have another project brewing, but that’s got to cook for a few months still. So stay tuned for that! πŸ™‚

Also: life is good, I’m feeling pretty positive, and even though the stress gets to me at times, it’s nothing that I can’t handle. πŸ™‚

With that, let me leave y’all with a song to groove into the weekend with. Happy weekend, and I’ll see y’all Monday!

Blog Stuff

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. πŸ˜€

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.

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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. πŸ™‚

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 theΒ Midi SkirtsΒ 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. πŸ™‚

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?

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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? πŸ™‚

Nail Adventures