Category Archives: Confessions of a retail Underling

Brand New Day

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This week marked the end of an era. After three years and nine months I left a job I had a love/hate relationship with in the travel industry. When I accepted the position it was intended to be a short stint until I found something better. That short stint endured the birth of two children, two promotions, a demotion, free travel, the making of new friends, and an enduring test of my morals, humility, patience, and professionalism.

This week I traded my ungodly retail hours, hour commute via train, rotating desk, and uniform for my own office, some snazzy new suits, and banking hours for a position with my local government. As Sunday came and went, I was not depressed thinking about Monday. Rather, I was very excited for the next chapter in my career. I’m able to utilize my finance and accounting background in order to help my community, I will never work a holiday or weekend again, and most importantly, I’m able to put my daughter to bed every night.

Oh…and I can start blogging again and practice translating some of my favorite songs into Arabic. I can’t promise to write anything in depth as my free time is quickly interrupted by the cutest baby ever and when I do put her to bed I find myself going right to sleep with her even if it’s 8:00pm!

So goodnight for now and and we’ll meet again soon friends!

In the shadows of Black Friday

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I have an affinity for working two jobs. My 2nd job has always been retail. Thus, I have rarely experienced a holiday without having to work “my part-time job”. This has meant missed opportunities with friends and family and a hint of bitterness as my holidays are spent catering to other people’s wishes and dreams.

As I looked at my part-time work schedule for the next few weeks all I could think about was “let me quit now before the floodgates open”. With Black Friday just around the corner, I have to mentally prepare myself for what is to come and remind myself of how entitled people are when it comes to obtaining a set of dishes (when I worked for Crate and Barrel) or book (when I worked for Barnes and Noble).

At my current retailer, I don’t feel there are any ‘hot’ items per say, but the store will be flooded with the ever-so pleasant nickel and dimers who insist on using expired coupons, individuals who insist we honor the morning specials even when they come in the afternoon (because their kid had an important game in the morning), or those who insist that a brand new full-priced item belongs on the clearance rack.

As Christmas comes and goes, one thing is constant, people will spend money they don’t have and go out of their mind to buy things their children don’t need (and will not care about a month after Christmas). Undoubtedly there are some good deals around the holidays. If I had the money I would love to buy myself a new flat screen on Black Friday or better yet a new laptop. But I have to ask myself, is it really worth camping out at midnight in the cold? Or being trampled on once the doors of the store open? I think not, but our consumer culture, one of commodity fetishism, says we should.

Since I have no money to shop, I’m curious as to what this year’s hot Black Friday deals will be. I can say that thanks to Pintrest, my interest has been peaked with ‘mini’ food items such as cake pops and mini donuts. As I perused the circulars today after work, I noticed Khols was having a sale on the cake pops and mini donut cookware. So, if anyone wants to buy me a birthday gift after Christmas, here is a great suggestion:)