for those who are in or around sane

Saturday, June 16

i rock the casbah

i am a hardcore bitch. i have the sleuthing skills of sherlock holmes. i could be a middle eastern convenience store owner.

so i'm working at the wine store, sitting here reading anne of avonlea via downloadable book (forgot harry potter at home), munching on some leftover cheese & bread. its been a slow day thus far. don was in, doing his educational talks and sale schmoozing. jim stopped by for a quick glass between trains. cute married couple cooed at each other over rose. then everyone left.

i sit at the register which faces the giant front window. i love to watch the mini-hinsdalian teens strutting around. i find myself gawking at the lack of clothing and pleathora of fake boobs... you get the idea... anyway, this girl and boy walk by once and eyeball the store through the window. when i get underage curious folks i automatically will them to think twice about entering. i threw my mental warning out with a stern "teacherly" look i inherited from my mother (an eyebrow is raised, a grimace at the ends of my mouth - it's been perfected after generations). they continued on.

20 min later i see them pass by again at a brisk pace. they stop and the guy walks in. he's just at 6 ft, really skinny with a very youthful face. he starts talking the sweet talk. the kind of fast, busy, loud talk where you pick out a few phrases you've heard at your parent's parties and throw them with confidence at the clerk. moi. he's moving very fast, checking out the corners of the store: beer in the back (i follow him), french bordeaux in the front (i follow him), checks out the big wall o'expensive yumminess (i follow closely). he calls out a type of wine and claims to have seen it on the shelf last week (i laugh silently to myself, and look it up in the system). it's there. it's $71.99. he "finds it" and walks across the aisle again saying how much his father loves it. he walks back and i see him pick up another bottle of it.

... enter unassuming female customers. now, i can only hope that these ladies forgave my lack of attentiveness. i can only hope that they too saw that my eyes were locked on the squirrely 16 year old holding $140 worth of wine. i apologize ladies! thank you for bearing with me.

he then puts the one bottle back on the shelf (puts it right up front so it looks like a full row - clever boy!) and ducks behind a barrell of zinfandel. stays there for a while, asking inane questions. i respond equally inanely and wait for him to stand up.

when i was 16, howie was our resident klepto. howie stole designer clothing. howie stole tools from the hardware store. howie stole expensive stuff on a regular basis. howie stole food and beverage and the hearts of a few freshman girls. now, i dont credit my next move to my fascination with howie's obsession, but i will say that i'm less ignorant for it.

gawky 16 year old stands up and shifts to his side, barely disguising the $71.99 bottle of wine in his pants and under his shirt.

"could you please put the bottle back?"
"oh yeah! sure!!" puts bottle back on shelf slowly
"i'm going to have to ask you to leave"
he strides silently out the door and nearly knocks his girlfriend over as he runs down the sidewalk.

i wonder why he felt that he could get away with this. do i look stupid or distracted? i mean... there was no one else in there to take away my attention. did he think he fooled me with his fast talk? does the fact that he got caught leave him with a good story for tonite's party? do you think that he'd be able to enjoy the $71.99 bottle of wine? would he end up puking it up? and i still have a nagging feeling that he snagged a bottle of beer from the back... but hey, he did work hard for it, didnt he?


Anonymous Lo said...

Yesh, they always think they can get away with it. They are 16, and generally, their parents believe every word and so do all the girls, so they assume that because you're a chick, they can sweet talk you into believing whatever. This is a lie and they are not yet good at it. (To plaigaphrase Joey H.) :) The bad news is that he probably did score a beer. The good news is that now that you've caught him, he won't ever do it while you're there. :)

You are just damned amazing, though! I laughed out loud when you wrote "could you please put the bottle back?" That was hiliarious!

When in doubt, I always go with my gut. 9 times out of 10, I'm right and they fess up when I'm only playing a hunch.

4:03 PM

Blogger dr. gonzo said...

it was really hard for me to keep a straight face while he was in the store! i wonder what would have happeened if i had laughed?

11:29 AM

Anonymous Lo said...

I've also done that to pre-teens/teens trying to scam me. Once, in my parking lot, they were trying to sell me newspapers, and one started fake crying and I laughed and said, "Really?" They stopped that ploy in a hurry.

It usually works wonders. ;) I don't know if I could have kept from laughing, so kudos to you.

10:58 AM

Blogger L M said...

Wow. nice. Way to be all hard-core and yet sternly polite. -Laura M.

4:45 PM


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