Retail therapy

‘Tis the season to shop. We all know I have um, special, thoughts and experiences with the shopping process. If you don’t, here’s a quick catch-up list (unless you have something better to do. You do? Oh):

Lines are stupid:

Line Etiquette – Learn It!
More thoughts on the retail checkout line

People are stupid:

Eat Nay Plug: Part Two
Expect the Unexpectant (read on, it’s punny)

Ok, it might be me:

The Foodstuffs Foxtrot
This Happened
This Happened…again

For the record, I worked in retail for many-a-years while I was in school. I know what a SKU is, my heart sank anytime I saw a shopper in line with a store bag because I knew a dreaded return transaction was looming, and I wore a smock. I know the amount of stress that can be involved in pleasing frantic shoppers for minimum wage and knowing this, I never snap or roll my eyes at anyone in the retail industry, no matter how immature, dumb or rude they may be.

I just blog about them later.


For instance, last week, I was at Dollarama during my lunch break. There were large lines at each till and it was really noisy. I must have zoned out for a second because my thoughts were interrupted by, “UMMMMM HELLLLLLOOOOO???!!!! I SAID WHO’S NEXT???!!!”

An overweight, heavily eye-linered teen cashier was jumping up and down and over-exaggeratedly waving her arms over her head, making fun of the fact that I didn’t hear her.

When she caught my attention and I started walking over, she didn’t stop: “YOOOO WHOOO! OVER HERE!,” her flabby fucking arms waving wildly as she chuckled to the cashier next to her.

“I’m sorry,” I said sheepishly. “My hearing hasn’t been the same since the accident.”












She uncomfortably rang through my purchases and quietly said, “Have a nice day…”

PARDON??? I can’t hear you!”


“Thanks, I will!”




Ok, I’ll come clean. I didn’t say anything passed, “I’m sorry.” That’s how I imagined it should have gone, once I was already in the next store.

XS Attitude

A few years ago, I was really into Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) as my form of exercise. This is DDR:

And though Guinness never did respond to my self-nomination, yes, I was obviously as good as little Ryota (the swivel around in the chair at the beginning of that video was his best move, in my opinion).

Months later, after I got rid of my Xbox and DDR mat because I had lost interest, I was struck with Dance Dance fever and wanted to play again. I purchased a cheap knock-off version that works with a DVD player instead of a gaming console, from XS Cargo.

XS Cargo is a store that sells merchandise for super cheap because they fell off a truck or something.

I started to play the faux-DDR and realized that it was a piece of shit. Half of the buttons on the mat didn’t work. I couldn’t find the receipt (a serious RARITY. I keep everything), but figured if I brought it back and explained that it didn’t work, maybe they could switch it for a new one or let me return it for store credit. If not, oh well. It was worth a shot.

I walked into the store struggling with the giant box. A few steps in, a tall, hard-faced male teen employee “greeted” me.

“Ummmm….can I HELP you?” He crossed his arms and loomed over me.

I cheerfully explained that I bought the faux-DDR from this store the other day and it doesn’t work, so I was wondering if I could exchange it for one that does.


Again, I’m pretty sure the merchandise is stolen.

“Ok. That’s fine. But, as I said, I don’t want to return it. I want to exchange it, because, as I said, this one doesn’t work.”


I amped up the cheer. “Well, you see, that’s actually the thing. I can’t seem to find my receipt! I figured I’d just come in and see if something can be done without it.”

“WELL, WITHOUT A RECEIPT, YOU’RE OUT OF LUCK.” He started walking away.

This kid had a serious ‘tude. He was completely defensive and rude ever since I walked in. Having worked in the industry, I understand that there are rules, and I was happy to abide by them. I didn’t know the rules until right then. There’s no reason to be mean about it! So I calmly said,

“I understand there are rules, and I didn’t know what they were. That’s why I came in. I’m simply here asking questions. Some stores have policies for returns without a receipt…” He cut me off.





I know.








How dare he?! This was a rarity, I tell you. A RARITY!

I was so flustered and taken aback I could feel tears stinging in the back of my eyes (I have this condition where when I’m frustrated or embarrassed, tears just magically form. I believe the medical term is “being a baby”).

I wasn’t trying to be a pain in the ass, but this hooligan was being ridiculously rude! On top of that, I was physically struggling to hold the box and people standing nearby were starting to listen in on our conversation. It was all happening so fast and it was very frustrating! A breakdown was imminent, so I had to bolt.

FINE. HAVE A NICE DAY.” I stormed out of the store, threw the box in my trunk and wiped my stupid tears.

TEARS. Over a faux-DDR and a rude pipsqueak.

I was really mad at myself by the time I got home. If I wasn’t for my “condition,” I could have asked to speak to the manager to tell him or her how rude this juvenile delinquent in a smock was being and brought him to JUSTICE.

Instead, I went straight to my computer and wrote a strongly-worded email detailing the altercation to the XS Cargo head office (who saw that coming?). I included the store location and a physical description of the thug employee. I actually got an email back a couple of days later saying that my email was forwarded to the attention of the manager of that store, and that, sorry, we still stand by our return policy.

The whole situation angered me so much that instead of looking harder for the receipt or attempting another switch at a different store, I just threw the barely used, partially malfunctioning faux-DDR into a dumpster at work.

I haven’t Dance Danced since.

And I’ll never Dance Dance again!



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