Jerks & Irks XXIX: Holiday Specifics & Other Important Stuff

Happy Monday, everyone. As happy as it could be, I guess. The tragedy that unfolded over the weekend devastated American citizens and broke hearts the world over. That’s why, I’d like to begin by providing the mailing address to Sandy Hook Elementary School:

Sandy Hook Elementary School

12 Dickenson Drive

Newtown, CT 06482

At a time like this, there is a little we can do. It’s not like a natural disaster where we can donate to the Red Cross or organize canned food drives. I’m not a mother but I imagine there is no greater pain than losing a child, especially so young, especially due to such senseless violence. If you haven’t already, please send out a card of condolences. Imagine the magnitude of solidarity the community of Newtown, CT will feel when they receive cards from people all over the country/world.


Like I said, there’s little we can do. But the least I could do (besides sending out my card) is make you guys laugh a little with a few tales from the dreaded bookstore job. Without further ado:

Jerks & Irks XXIX: Holiday Specifics

I haven’t worked retail during the holidays in many years. Most of my jobs have been serving/bartending at various restaurants. Most of the customers are annoying in the same ways all year-long, regardless of the season. And usually you get an uptick in tips nice customers around the holidays. Bonus! But I digress… So, the last time I worked retail during this supposedly cheery season was a men’s suit store. I excelled there. Even won a company award for sales and customer service. I could really dress a real-life Ken doll back then. But when the holidays arrived, the customers weren’t always men. They were mothers, wives, and sisters of men. Women who had no idea what they were doing. They would ask for a sport coat, I would ask how tall/broad their gift recipient was, and receive an answer like, “Bigger than you, I think.” Well no shit, lady, I’m a 16-year-old cheerleader. And that’s how the season went. And some time after Kwanzaa (December 26th) there would be a line out the door of men trying to return items that would be ‘big on me.’ I think…

Now there’s the bookstore. If people at the men’s suit store were vague, the people at the bookstore are miles away, on the opposite side of the spectrum. People wander in. They know Aunt Suzie likes Lincoln and shoes. “Excuse me, do you have any books about Lincoln’s shoes?” Cue blank stare from me. They know Uncle Jed has a tattoo of the Hindu god Ganesha. “Excuse me, do you have any books about the Ganesha? The elephant god with the flower in his hand?” Cue me showing them a book about all the hindu gods, followed by their subsequent annoyance. They know Grandma Lucy’s on an Israeli cous cous kick. “Excuse me, do you have any Israeli cous cous cookbooks?” Cue my face brightening as I remember a book entitled ‘Rice, Pasta, and Cous Cous. ‘Also cue their disappointment and snarky remark about Israeli cous cous not being included in any of the recipes. Then cue me trying not to pummel them with the book in an effort to ground them into Israeli cous cous.


And so on and mother$*#^ing so forth…These are exaggerations, of course. Except for the cous cous incident. That one actually happened. But, seriously, it’s just not that kind of store. It’s a bargain bookstore. And even if it were Barnes and Noble, I doubt these inane requests could be fulfilled. Cue exasperated sigh.

Oh well. In other news, the Sizzling Winter Blog Hop and Treasure Hunt officially ended on December 16th. And this winner is….(I was going to say “cue drumroll,” but I think I overdid it with the cues already, haha) Becky VanGinkel!!! Congratulations Becky! You’ve won a fantabulous canvas tote bag with my Jordanna East logo! Can’t wait for my face to help you carry all your stuff!

That’s one good lookin’ gal on there!

15 thoughts on “Jerks & Irks XXIX: Holiday Specifics & Other Important Stuff

  1. Working retail has to suck big time. I feel your pain. It’s amazing what people expect from someone hired for a temporary job, expecting them to be familiar with thousands of titles, by page, let alone title. Then again if these places would actually hire anyone permanently, full-time with benefits, one might actually put in the time to learn a more detailed inventory well enough to be able to “read minds.” Right? LOL. I know you have to learn the basic inventory, but something like Isralei couscous?

    Great article.

    • Glad you liked my post!

      It really is a shame. And the type of bargain store that it is, we don’t have a database of our inventory on the computer. We receive boxes and boxes of stuff, things get moved around, shipped to other stores, etc on a WEEKLY basis. It’s impossible to keep up with. I try to equate to something the people might understand (when I’m in the mood to talk and not fantasize about killing them). For example, if it’s a married man, I ask if his wife likes to buy shoes. Then I ask him to name me every pair of shoes she has. When he can’t, my point is made. Haha.

      Thanks for stopping by!

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