Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas music

This gem was my surprise favorite song of the season.

the only direction life moves is forward

Once again I am not going home for Christmas.  But this year, I am perfectly happy even though I am not participating in as many festivities.  There have been small changes in my life that have had a big impact and I am amazed by the overall difference of a positive attitude.

In a cheesy family Christmas movie I was watching this morning, the mother character told the selfish widow daughter character that "the only direction life moves is forward" and I thought "DAMN that is so true!"

I am so thankful for all that I am and have.  I am proud of the crawling out I did of certain pits.  I acknowledge the power and peace of patience, forgiveness, and love.

word play can make my day

Yesterday a customer returned an advent calendar because there was a speck of red ink printed on a white number.  We did not have any more for an exchange, so she spent at least an hour going through all the other choices of advent calendars to find the perfect one.  She looked so miserable and her task seemed so pointless.  "I hope she finds her sad advent calendar," I thought to myself.  Then I spent the rest of the afternoon chuckling about Sadvent calendars.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas Eve Eve

- Gift card only customers?  The purchase of a gift card is still a transaction.  It still takes time and sometimes more than a transaction with merchandise.  I know that is "all" you want to buy, but I cannot give you cuts in line in front of everyone else, including the woman with her rambunctious children, the old man with the walker, the guy who got shafted in one line and is starting over in a different line, and one of our regulars who has cancer!  I know you are impatient, but you should have known there would be a bunch of people out shopping the few days before Christmas.  Come on!  You are only buying a gift card.  If that was all you were going to get anyway, why don't you wait until Christmas Eve, the day of the last minute men shoppers?  Have a couple beers and then join your brethren!

- Customer generalization!  For some reason, the customers that buy crackers are really intense.  More than purchasers of other items, these customers are vocal and bitchy about selection and price.

- Yesterday I was helping a male customer find an item.  I gave him my positive and sincere critique of the gadget.  He was sold.  Then, a nearby customer chimed in, saying how much she loved the item.  This is ok with me; customer reviews are very powerful.  THEN another customer gave her opinion, also positive, but also full of misinformation about the product, which the first customer seconded.  AAAGH!  Before I could discreetly correct the situation, the man walked off with the product.  The ladies then started congratulating themselves on how they are such great sales people.  "You should hire us!" they said.  Yea, right, Miss Information.

Only a couple more days!  Then boring January!  Yea!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Hppy Chrstms

A month and a half ago I threw myself into the holidays.  I put up my tree, started listening to Christmas music, planned and threw a holiday party, started wearing a Santa hat occasionally.  It was a magical time.  The store was sparkly and full and customers were cheery and kind.

Now it is one week before Christmas.  Though I always hope to avoid clich├ęd seasonal stress, there comes a point when you cannot.  Each morning, I feel like I am preparing for a marathon (though I have never participated in a marathon, I imagine it takes practice, endurance and planning.  Like my work days).  I gather myself mentally.  "One day at a time," I tell myself.  "Just put your head down and get through today."  Though of course, with smiles and enthusiasm and friendly gestures.

The customers have lost their cheerfulness.  Many customers talk to me like I am the seasonal help.  They are assuming I don't know anything, which is less than they usually expect.  They don't believe anything I tell them and scoff over my attempts to keep the peace between customers.  You know, dwindling merchandise, lines.

So, Happy Christmas.

The candy canes are still wasteful.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

What the heck sort of retail blog is this anyway??

All 5 of my readers may be wondering why I haven't posted more, this being the blessed holiday season and all.  The truth is that I am effing tired.  I am swamped with material, but when I get home, I want to eat, hang out with loved ones, and sleep.  It gets pushed aside, as is the way of the blog.

I did have a super great moment the other day though, or maybe it was today.  I don't remember exactly.  They are all blurring together in a mess of glitter and Christmas songs and candy.  I overheard one of my co-workers telling a customer that we didn't take AMEX and the customer launched into a story of it (the credit card American Express) getting really popular.  She was out to dinner with her friends and they all pulled out the same card!  Which was AMEX!  So, see?  It is really popular because all of her friends have it!

Wow.  This is great news!  An individual and their friend group are a reliable meter for what is cool and popular??  Me and my friends all like to drink pee, so see?  It is popular.  You should do it too.  Because it's popular  and we are a group and we are some people.  You are missing out.