Tuesday, November 22, 2011


Since most romance readers (and writers) are women, I think it’s safe to blog this week about something I did a few weeks ago, which all women do. I went shopping for a shirt. Well, actually I tried to buy a shirt, a “top” to go with the black pants I would wear in the musical COME TO THE CABARET in which I appeared last month. The shirt was to be a solid color, besides, and I had only one such top, which I wore in a previous musical.

I occasionally shop at Draper and Damon’s, but have done less recently due to (1) their sizes run large, requiring me to buy Petite-Extra Small, whereas I normally wear a plain “Small,” and (2) they always sell out of PXS sizes before I get there. However, I also receive their catalog so a sales person told me that, if I see a shirt I like in the catalog, I should order it or come into the store immediately.

So, needing one for the musical, I opened the D&D catalog the moment it arrived and saw a red shirt that I thought would do. It was priced at $39.95 and the catalog had a sticker on the front for $5 off any item costing $40 or more.

You guessed it already, didn’t you? I went to the store that very day (after phoning to be sure they had one in my size and color) and tried it on. It was still a wee bit large, but (as I’ve done before) I decided a wash in hot water and dry in a hot dryer would probably shrink it just enough. At the checkout desk I asked for the discount and was told the computer wouldn’t allow it. I suggested that, for a difference of five cents, they could give me the discount anyway, but the clerk insisted she couldn’t.

“I have to follow the rules.”

I replied, “That seems unfair. When you price an item five cents below the amount that’s eligible for a discount, it appears you have no intention of actually giving the discount to the customer.”

“I don’t make the rules,” she said.

“Then speak to someone who does make the rules, because this one has just cost you a customer.” And I walked out empty-handed.

Did I do the right thing? I think so. I grew up believing “The customer is always right,” and it seems bad business to me to treat a customer so shabbily for a matter of five cents. Have you ever walked away from a deal you thought was unfair?

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