Further Adventures – Retail redux.

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Last night’s valet gig was blissfully on the down-low & decently profitable. Not a bad thing all around, if you ask me. I got home around 12:30, spent a little time continuing to run down the timer on traffic school, & plodded along on a layout sample for a client that was due in the morning until I hit a wall & decided a couple hours’ sleep wouldn’t hurt.

I really need to learn to just ignore the wall. :sigh: I overslept what I wanted by about two hours, & spent the first hour & a half after getting up frantically finishing files & sending links off. It’s about 6pm now, and based on the lack of response from that email, I suspect that the client has taken off from their day job until the New Year & thus is not checking their Escape from My Employer Project email. On the one hand, this technically gives me a few moments of peace… on the other, I’ll have to meditate a bit for my body to release the stress of that “oh, sh*t!” time spent trying to make what I perceived as a deadline.

That done, I bundled Zoey into Zoom-Zoom for a car ride & moseyed over to Polgara’s to feed her kitties & change the litter box since she’s away for a bit. I can never decide if her cats have actually accepted me, or if they just like me because when their mom’s away I provide the food. hrm.

I went to deposit last night’s cash in my business account, & discovered that I’d vastly underestimated the balance on the account, which was a great comfort — it means that I could pay for traffic school & two of the parking tickets and still drop the bonus from my client into my ING account. (I have this vague hope of actually rebuilding my savings again. It’s a wacky dream, I know.)

Then I went to a scary, scary place – The Grove. I actually used to work at the Gap there when I first got to LA. Two years in that wackitude has given me no small amount of trepidation going there this time of year, but alas, other than crossing the 405 it was the closest solution for my two errands.

Nike was the first stop – my sneakers are officially ready to be downgraded to boathouse usage rather than running, so I needed a new pair before I sacrificed to the boathouse gods.

Before we go any further, let me make something clear – I’m cheap. Before I walked in, I’d already checked online to see if I could get a better deal on the ones I wanted in my size and failed. So you can imagine my happiness when I got there & found it sitting on the shelf.
:insert chorus of children crying “yaaaaay!”:

…. but they’re not in my size in the clearance color.
:small whine of disappointed children:

We tried a couple other pairs and I finally just asked, “Dude, can we trace this out at other stores?”

He grinned & went, “Yes we can.”

Turns out San Francisco has ‘em in my size, & they can be shipped to me for free. Suh-weet! But wait! That price is way higher than online…. we checked & he’d put in the regular SKU. Try a different color, and suddenly it dropped about $30. The sales guy looked at me & said, “Well, if you want that color…” and I replied, “It’s the same shoe in a different color for $30 less. I’m good with gray. Gray works.”

He informed me that I was the best customer he’d had all day — and I must’ve been, because he left me alone at their ordering computer to go on break. Good thing I worked enough retail to print my own ordering receipt!

Side note: One of the other employees came by as I opened the bottom cabinet to make sure there was a printer there before I got my receipt, and when she went to help, I explained, “It’s cool, I just wanted to make sure that if I hit print it wouldn’t end up in the back office mixed up in payroll or something.” This seemed to amuse her greatly – basically, it would seem that at Nike, I’m friggin’ barrel o’ laughs.

I then migrated over to the very Gap that I used to work at in the hopes of acquiring some discounted unmentionables. Due to the aforementioned blatant frugality, I tend to keep a white, black & neutral & then the rest are whatever colors were less than $20. As consequence, it’s been a bit since I bought new unlined bras, & I thought it best to get a fitting done.

I need to just take a moment to sit back, put up a hand and say, “Oh, my god” — who are you GapGirl, & what on earth is your version of math that you would ever think I’m a 32A? For those of you that I haven’t had real life interaction with, I’m 5’10″ — no matter how much weight I ever lose, there’s this little hindrance called my bones which would prevent me from fitting into a 32. Ribcages, man – friggin’ inconvenient things, lemme tell ya.

I was half tempted to take the measuring tape & train the girl on how to do a bra fitting, since clearly she hadn’t watched the completely asexual training videos that Gap created in the white-walled, wooden-floored fitting area above the main store in San Francisco. You know, the one where everybody wears navy, and all the bras are either white or gray, and at no point do they cover the fact that since you’re in California, it’s entirely possible that you’ll get a customer who is either a drag queen or transgender-in-progress — yes, that one. (Indeed the “how to service transgender clients with sensitivity and no look like a friggin’ ignorant newb” was a talk that we’d eventually end up having with most of the new girls in GapBody at one point or another. Ah, West Hollywood…)

Having despaired of finding help from the staff, I just took care of it myself and eventually found what size I’m in. (which, no, was not a 32A). There were three at the telltale .97 price point*, so they came home with me, along with a rare occurance of a pair of matching undies. (Considering that the only reason I know how to shop for bras is from having to learn it for work, do you honestly think I usually care enough to get things that match? Certainly not.)
*For those of you not intimately familiar with Gap’s pricing points, any time you see a price ending in .97, that means it is at the lowest price it will be sold at. Period. Not going any lower, buy it now.

Arrived at my car just to see the latest converts to the Zoey Fan Club walking away from my back windows.
(I’m not joking about that – I once returned to my car to have someone ask if I would take my dog out of the car so he could take a picture of her because he was just that in awe of her cute-osity.)

Having survived another retail foray, I was left with one true hurdle in the day – finishing bloody traffic school. I ran down the last hour of my time, and set up for the final test required by the state of California, which according to the site, I would be allotted an hour & a half. I’ll not lie – when I saw that, I totally had a moment of “Oh. Holy. Jesus.” (TMBridget Jones)

Ninety minutes for what? I don’t know if that’s the amount of time required by the state, or if that’s the online school’s way of passing the full eight hours of requisite time, but it was about 50 multiple choice questions that I dawdled over more than my freakin’ SAT and it still only took about 20 minutes. I got to the end & was seriously paranoid that I’d missed something — I literally went back & scrolled the entire thing again to make sure I hadn’t somehow missed a question involving binomial calculus or something.
Ninety minutes… I figure there’s gotta be a physics problem, right? Train A leaving going north at 1pm, Train B going southeast with a westerly wind, how long will it take the hamster that bounced out of the coal cart Train B was going over a bridge to drift upstream & get a ride home on Train A or somesuch impossibility. Just….something.

That in mind, I hit “submit quiz” with no small amount of trepidation, and thankfully was rewarded with the notice that I had indeed passed first try, thank the freakin’ lord that’s over and done with.

That done, today’s list also saw two of the four parking tickets paid off, notice that my ink refill has been shipped so that in 3 – 5 days I’ll be able to do my end of the year paperwork, and a note from the Post Office that the box my mom sent out for the holidays was attempted to be delivered while I was out. Oddly enough, according to the USPS, the name of the person that sent the package was “NH”. If that’s true, I can’t help but wonder if this means I now a cut of New Hampshire’s slightly overblown property taxes. :woot of hope!:

In other news, I’ve spent this holiday break oddly fascinated by the newest version of Pride and Prejudice in the Knightley/McFayden movie version. I think I’ve finally figured out why it is that this version is irksome for me. There may be an entry on this later.
Random information: I’m rather squicked that when I looked up “Pride & Predjudice” on Amazon.com without specifying a product category, the top return was for this.
(probably NSFW)

Zoey version of this entire entry: “We went on a car ride! Yay car ride!”

Music: Shadowboxer – Fiona Apple (Tidal) Fiona Apple - Tidal - Shadowboxer

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