Sunday, August 21, 2011

Flo-Rida Adventures Part 2

If it pumps, they will pump it. If it bounces, they will bounce it. If it sprays, they must spray it. No matter what ill-fated product presents itself in their path, Tristan and Susan seem to be in complete agreement that commercial items have been placed on store shelves specifically for their sensory stimulation and amusement.

Thankfully, I don’t shop with the two of them very often. When I do find myself wandering through store aisles with this pair of compulsive product probers, I quickly become painfully aware they are one in the same. Florida only confirmed what I already knew.

It sprays, so she sprayed and sniffed.

It bounces, so he squatted and bounced.

Inevitably, as they handle and sample products, they drop items on the floor, creating clanging, squeaking, whining and crashing disturbances! No matter how many times I sternly tell them products have not been placed there for their enjoyment, their questionable upbringings jovially override my expressed concerns.

It’s ridiculous! When I go in a store, I touch nothing; they touch everything! I can only cringe. In the “As Seen On TV” store in Orlando, she had to try on the hi-def glasses and then she tried on this haute mode hat.
What a cutie!

Still, where matters of shopping are concerned, you are best not to trifle with Susan.

We found out from our hotel reception desk, the lightning bolt that sent father and son into each others' arms the day before, actually struck the adjacent hotel, knocking out wi-fi to that hotel and ours. To think, disabled wi-fi might have kept Susan from printing her on-line Hollister coupons! I can tell you, this was a crisis, narrowly averted. Luckily, the wi-fi was restored in time for Susan to spread her unstoppable campaign of shock-and-awe shopping!

The first time Susan strolled up to the counter at the Hollister store in Melbourne, the clerks stupidly ignored sounds of the Ennio Morricone theme music from “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”. The clerks probably chalked it up to coincidence, but the truth is, they had no idea who they were dealing with.

Susan laid her purchases out on the countertop and presented the coupon she had printed at home for shopping on-line. It entitled her to “20% Off” the clothing items she was buying.

At the end of the transaction, the clerks handed her another card and suggested she go back on-line to redeem it. She went back to the hotel, went on-line, printed her next coupon and went back to the store the next day! Once more, she plopped her products on the counter, mostly clothing for Tristan, and pulled out a “$25 Off” coupon. I was there; the clerks literally “ooooed” and “aahhhed” and showed each other this latest coupon. It seems none of them had ever seen such a thing before! They presented her with yet another card and told her to go on-line to redeem it. I had also been given a coupon because I had bought Susan a few items for her birthday. She went back to the hotel, two coupon cards in-hand, printed her next coupon and went back to the store the next day! She plopped her products on the counter, again, mostly clothing for Tristan and pulled out a “25% Off” coupon.

Here she waits in the store for Tristan to try on an item.

She was buying T-shirts, hoodies, jeans, underwear and other items that were already on special and getting the coupon discounts on top of the sale prices. She was getting a pair of jeans that might go for $69 in Canada and $49 in the US, for a mere $19. The savings on T-shirts were even more drastic!

Clearly, Susan keeps her conquests in perspective. Stepping from the strangely dark store into the bright mall after a particularly lucrative round of coupon dropping, she chuckled, “I’m going to frame this bill.” As she finished speaking, a nervous tumbleweed bounced past.

I’ll bet the clerks are still wandering through the dark store, awed and shocked by the irrefutable power of Shopper Susan. Alas, I continue to faithfully attempt to document her shopping savvy (kindly refer to blog dated March 27, 2011).

I know that, for generations, the question, “Which came first, the chicken, or the egg?”, has begged an answer. The more immediate and timely question is, perhaps, “Which came first, the coupon, or the purchase?”

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