Last week, I had the pleasure of listening to a person tell me that they would like to work retail because, “it looks easy”… They even did the hand air quotations! Before I laughed in their face, I stabbed them with a fork. Just kidding, that’s psychic and I’m not their; yet. The thing is, it’s not. Retail is a soul sucking, take all, give me your first born type of job. I didn’t hop and skip my way into retail willingly, I needed a job after my first job shut the doors FOR-EV-ER. I’m still in the business, nine years later and I’ve gotten worse.
Before retail, I saw the good in everybody, no one could do wrong and if they did, I’d like to think they’d get up and do well after. I use to enjoy weekends off, run down hills like Laura Ingalls, pick daisies, enjoy Thanksgiving and Christmas. I do none of those things any more, rather I dislike humans and nurse a glass of whiskey every night. When I began this wondrous journey of retail, I didn’t think I’d still be in it; but alas I am. Nothing surprises me any more, I think the last time I was surprised by what a customer said, was when he came up to me and said; “someone crapped down your aisle.” Sure enough, someone did indeed crap in my aisle… Someone walked and pooped at the same time… Pooped.
Now I know what you may be thinking; “why doesn’t she get a new job?” I’ve already tired that avenue, and the problem is simple. I like the company I work for, Shoe Carnival is truly the best company I’ve worked for in my short retail span. Old Navy was meh, even though one manager was slightly crazy and how I found out I was loosing my job with Steve & Berry’s was instead of the company telling us, the company in which we called to fill our vending machines said; “Uh, this store is closing right?….”
Working with great people help that as well. The peeps I work with are a mixed bag of interesting, boss looks just like Simon Pegg and the laugh out loud type. Plus, let’s be real.. The pay is choice and the benefits for my heath is rad. But it is because of these crazies that I get through my day a little better, mainly because we all agree on one thing… People are the worst.
I’ve painfully tired to understand people and why they think it’s okay to leave out 50 shoes, have the balls to walk up with a smile and say, “I didn’t want those.” I’ve tired to understand all the stupid jokes they seem to think I’ve never heard before, “my card isn’t scanning…. I guess my shoes are free!” I’ve tired to understand all of the dumb questions I get asked everyday, one in particular is about our BOGO… I guess people forego reading the sign, that’s right in front of their face. The worst thing someone has ever said to me, (and I’ve told some), was just last year on Thanksgiving day. Lady came up to me with a sad face and said, “I really hate that you all have to work and miss your families.” Inside my mind exploded with full anger, almost to the point of having aneurysm…
I could go on and on, for those who are friends with me on Facebook get the random status from me on which these random situations happen. Honestly it’s because of those everyday situations, that I truly do dislike humans. I’m quick to an angry attitude, I’m way to sarcastic for my own good, I’ve perfected the fake laugh, I sigh the minute I hear someone yell, “help!?”, and I look at the people shopping in my store and wonder how on earth they think it’s okay to be rude, messy and lazy. What has happen to you humans? Is it because I’m just working in retail, that automatically makes me garbage? What is it? Why?
Now I can pretty much read your mind while reading this, “man, she must be crap at customer service.” False. I may mentally curse and wish death upon all, but outwardly I’ll charm the pants off you. I will make sure you find the right shoes, you’ll leave satisfied and will want to come back because of that excellent service! (that’s what she said) Yeah, people will yell at me, tell me I’m an idiot and proceeded to say they should get what they want… But I’ll always make sure to let you, the customer speak your mind, all the while I’ll make sure to have my mouth slightly open and a ‘bored’ look upon my face. Or maybe this face….
But once you turn your back…
On the flip side, every once in a while I will get a sweet, nice and the most loveliest customer ever. When that does happen I almost want to give them a free pair of shoes and take them out for a steak dinner! It doesn’t happen often, but when it does, it seriously makes my day.
In the end retail has changed me, it’s given me talents along the way and I get to be apart of people’s lives I never thought possible. I’m a black belt at folding shirts (without the shirt folder!), I’ve become friends with a wide variety of people and I’ve taken that next step into my management career. Yes, retail sucks the life out of me and I’m fairly certain I’ll have to give my first born to Shoe Carnival… But, I can say with full honesty after all that being said, working retail is the most satisfying way to see how much people has changed over the years and it’s also the kind of job that I love to hate.