Tuesday, August 21, 2012

I Remember You! How's That Shirt You Stole Workin' Out For Ya?

Have you seen this woman? Apparently she's stealing
meat.... (try typing that with a straight face).
Call the Scranton PA Police at 570-348-4134.
            As I get older I find that I see more and more faces that I recognize in the places that I go (I NEVER forget a face. I may forget your name and all sorts of other important information. Faces stick). Sometimes it’s like a complex logic puzzle trying to figure out where and why I know the face. Did I go to grade school with this face? Did I go to college with this face? Did I play in youth orchestra with this face? Have I played gigs with this face? Did I meet this face in another country? Did I see this face at the gym? Is this one of the faces of the really deranged people I’ve encountered at Barnes & Noble? NOPE! WAIT! I’ve GOT it! I REMEMBER YOU! YOU have the face of one of the many SHOPLIFTERS I tailed while working at Anthropologie.
            What an awkward and entertaining moment it is to reencounter these people in regular life. I find myself having so many questions. I want to go up to them and ask them why. Why do you shoplift? Are you psychologically ill? Are you a cleptomaniac? Do you do it for fun? Do you do it because you take a medication that makes you take things? Do you steal because you can’t afford clothes? If so, don’t you think you should, perhaps, be stealing from Walmart, or somewhere a bit more appropriate for necessities? But, I think the number ONE question I find myself wanting to ask these people, is how exactly did you have the balls to complain about the service you were getting when you were stealing from my store?
            If you’ve never worked in retail, and you are an honest individual, you probably wouldn’t believe how much theft is actually happening in most stores. It’s unreal. Not only are you being ripped off by sniveling, snot-faced, coddled teens, but professional theft rings, middle-aged women with serious issues, and your own trusted employees. Product goes missing everyday. You watch it walk out the door half the time with your hands tied behind your back, unable to do a damned thing about it. If the professionals took it, you didn’t get to see it leave, you just notice the giant empty spots left behind. I was lucky enough to see a professional jack several thousand in handbags from a Nordstrom…. He was on his way out the door to his getaway car, too far ahead for me to do anything about it. The man was literally covered in handbags so I found myself wondering how no one else noticed the spectacle.
            Some of these “customers” seem to think that they deserve to be treated with the same respect as anyone else while they’re “shopping.” Laughable, I know. In all honesty, these people are treated to even better service than the rest of the clientele. While all hands on deck offer them assistance, ask if they can help, offer outfitting options for what they have in their hands, courteously try to take things to fitting rooms for them, and wait on them hand and foot as they walk every inch of the store, these “customers” are not only stealing product but attention while real shoppers find themselves unattended. And yet, these “customers” so often complain that they’re getting “too much service,” “are being followed around,” or “feel uncomfortable.” 
            Well, you know what, darling? Perhaps we were just concerned for you, because you’ve looked 8 months pregnant for, oh, about 12 months now (what’s up stolen apparel baby!) and wanted to be able to offer you a seat if you felt faint. Or maybe we were worried that that kind of raggedy looking Filenes bag (that you’ve been stuffing merchandise in) you’re toting might give out, and we wanted to be able to offer you a fresh bag for you to carry your things in. Maybe we thought that you were having problems reading the price tags (when you were getting close to them, ripping them off, and switching them with a tag with a lower price) and thought we could assist you with our 20/20 vision. PERHAPS, you should just try PAYING, like everyone else and watch what a difference it makes. 

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