Today I finally got the time to go to the mall and pick up a few things. First stop was Macy*s, for my Clinique order. Now, the reason why I shop at Clinique is three-fold:
(1) Dad bought me Clinique makeup as presents, because he has a Macy*s card. I liked the gifts, so when I ran out or wanted another color, I went back there.
(2) When I wanted to do something about my rather haphazard acne-defense plan, I went to the Clinique counter just to see what they would offer. One person helped me completely, let me explain my situation, and let me dictate what I wanted (read: what I could afford). From there, I got started on the 3-step system. My face has never been clearer, which proves their products work. They're also affordable.
(3) The service. As mentioned in (2), I got to speak one-on-one with someone, who explained to me everything, from ingredients to pricing. Some cosmeticians and counter salespeople seem driven by an invisible commission (afaik they're not commissioned at Macy*s), and I hate thinking they're talking down to me. That's NEVER been an issue at my Macy*s, and as a result, I know several girls by name: Summer, Rachel, and Lauren, and all have helped me out immensely, been honest, and made me look and feel beautiful and wanted at their counter.
That's an example of a GREAT shopping experience.
Okay, now let's go to JCPenney. I need some new flats, because the American Eagle ones I picked up at Payless Shoes Source a while back are falling apart. The right shoe's strap lining has come undone, and the left shoe's button is loose. The toes on both are peeling upward, but that's a bad habit of mine when I sit (with my toes on the floor, rather than my feet FLAT on the floor). In any case, they were cheap, so I don't mind getting a new pair. JCPenney's selection is mediocre at best, but I have a 15% off coupon I'm determined to use. I finally find a small wall with Arizona Jeans flats, including a single pair in my size. No straps, but they still fit better than anything else
I've tried on (and I did go to LoveD and check out Macy*s sections first). So I get them.
The girl at the counter is obviously distracted, talking to someone behind her while she's ringing me up. She leaves the coupon on the counter after she's bagged my shoes, and I wonder if I just take it back, would I be able to use it again in another department? I decide not to (even though I could probably print up the same coupon again if I wanted) because I'm the honest sort, and also because JCPenney has never offered me a) clothes in a size that fit for me... leastwise, they haven't for a while; and b) because I don't like the "experience" so much. Instead of fun, it feels like a chore.
So, while I did get what I wanted for a reasonable price, it wasn't something I enjoyed doing. I guess that was an "OKAY" shopping experience.
Next item on the list: new boots. I'm super-picky about my boots. Point in fact, if I'm wearing it on any part of me, I deserve to be picky. It's not just the image I project to others, it's the image that helps me feel a certain way about MYSELF. I'm petite, have medium-sized breasts and a bubble butt, and if I wear the wrong clothes, I look like a lumpy dwarf. Obviously, the clothes I wear should make me feel confident, sexy, and hot-- not like I'm a lost cousin of Snow White's Seven Dwarves.
So I go to One Thousand Steps, a newer shop in the mall with a rather interesting architecture. Like I do at most stores, I start by wandering around. I'm not exactly Miss Gold Card, but I do always appreciate when someone comes up to me and asks if I need any assistance. What I
tell them is supposed to send a message about just how much "help" I need. When I walked into this store, I looked at the boots-- nothing that really caught my eye, so I headed to the back. A salesgirl almost appearing to block the way asked if I needed anything, so I threw her a line: yes, I wanted to find boots, but I guessed they were all up front. Okay, yes. So she showed me several boots, and based on those, I let her know what I wanted: about knee-high, black, not patent leather, and preferably without any fancy designs, rouching, etc. She had a few good suggestions, but she didn't seem to understand when I didn't like something and wanted to move on, or look on my own. She also committed what I consider a heinous salesgirl crime: comparing me to another customer. YOU DO NOT DO THAT. I am not some other woman. I do not have her looks, her height, her money. For all I know, that other woman could have been 4'10" or 6'1", fat or skinny, rich or poor. It doesn't matter. But I'm not her, and I shouldn't be treated as such. What one woman buys to look good with her dresses will NOT look good with me and my tailored pants.
I left that store not just out of the want to find boots I really DID like (because this store didn't have them), but also to get away from the pushy salesgirl. That was an example of a BAD shopping experience. (I've had worse, but the fact that I'm classing it with the other "BADs" is saying something.)
In the end, I got my flats, placed my order for the Clinique event starting Oct. 2nd (I support Breast Cancer research with my makeup purchases. Do you?)
, and got 5 more manga at Borders, along with a few special orders placed (and a few that weren't available... read on). I didn't find my boots, though I went to practically every shoe store in the mall. I didn't go to DSW, but the last time I was there, nothing had grabbed me. Fact is, sometimes you have to spend a lot to get exactly what you want, so I might end up going back to Macy*s and spending $169 on a pair of boots that I thought looked perfect.
As for the books, I placed Antique Gift Shop #3, xxxHolic #8, and Full Metal Panic #4 on special order, but Borders' distributor didn't have:
* Lois & Clark Season 4 boxed set
* Forbidden Dance vol. 1
* Full Metal Panic vol. 2
* I.N.V.U vol. 3
* Antique Gift Shop vol. 5
in stock. If anyone has any of those volumes (or the L&C!), I am willing to trade!
Let me know what you're looking for and I'll see if I can supply you. Likewise, if you just want to sell them to get them off your hands, I'll buy them. :)
All of this has me thinking of a previous idea for a novel that I never pursued, mainly because I believe in having a certain amount of real life experience in SOMETHING (whether it's love, sex, or murder) before writing about it. Either that, or do a bunch of research and talk to a lot of people who DO know what they're talking about. I hope that someday I can do one of those two... but I can't reveal the "novel" idea just yet. :D
I do wish I could write a good mystery/crime/suspense/thriller, but that feeling may have just been brought on by the marathon of CSI I watched. I think I've gotten into the show enough where I want to see the upcoming season premiere. Does anyone else have any shows I ought to get into? I haven't watched TV in a while (unless Extreme Makeover: Home Edition counts).
That said, I better get to sleep-- I have early class and work who-knows-when.