Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The Pretty Woman mistake

Jim and I are slobs most of the time. We’re sweatshirt/t-shirt/jeans/sweats people. And if we’re not going out for dinner or whathaveyou later in the day, I’m all about the ponytail/baseball hat on the weekends.

And that’s pretty much how we looked for furniture shopping one Saturday several weeks ago.

You should know that after nine years of marriage, I am still trying to rid our house of the what-the-hell-were-they-thinking furniture Jim bought with his lovely starter wife back in the late 80’s.

With another Thanksgiving full house on the horizon, it was time for the swingin’ modern pseudo-oak dining room set to go.
“We want something that’s gonna last 50 years,” I say to the dour-looking woman at Dow Furniture in North Aurora.

It's a pretty snazzy place. We'd shopped there before - in fact, we bought our First Piece of Furniture as a Married Couple there: Our all-time favoritest, comfiest couch that was immediately chewed up by Gromit the Danger Puppy, He Who Shall Not Be Left Alone.

But we've also done our time with the falls-apart-in-two-years furniture – a kitchen table that looked great but has wobbled since the day it was delivered and an entertainment center that chips if you look at it the wrong way.

No more. We worked hard and saved up for something that will really last this time.

But the snooty-falutey woman at Dow Furniture doesn’t know this. All she sees is two ragamuffins in her pristine store wasting her time.

She takes us around to a set that looks like it was sold and then returned after three years of use.

I give Jim the nose crinkle and he tells her no, that’s not quite what we’re after.

The next set is probably a step down from our existing pseudo-oak shit.

She’s not getting it, so I say it again.

“We really want something solid that’s going to last and not be out of style 10 years from now.”

She frowns, looks us up and down and proceeds to the next room.

That’s when we spot it: A table that could be The One.
As with most couples, Jim and I have wildly different taste.

He has Lost in Space taste. If it looks like it coulda been used by the Robinsons and that dastardly Dr. Smith on the Jupiter 2, he wants it. Someday I'll tell ya about the robot situation.

Me, I tend to go the more classic, traditional route, but not too formal/antique-y.

So when we finally find something that we both like it is a veritable Furniture Miracle.
“What about this one?” Jim says, pointing to The One.

“Well, that set is more expensive,” she says, frowning.

It was at that point we both felt like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman.

I pictured us walking in there a few weeks later with a dining room set on both arms to ask her if she works on commission.

"Big mistake," we'll say triumphantly, dressed as beautiful, intelligent, kind-hearted prostitutes. "BIG. HUGE. We have to go shopping now."
I am listening to: City sounds
I am reading: Nothing
And I am: Lost in space


molly gras said...


I think I spewed on my keyboard!

That is the absolute best moniker for a puppy dog.

(and sorry to hear about the sacrifice of comfy couch to said puppy dog -- all things for a good cause, I say)

*regarding judgmental, pretentious salespeople -- screw'em, never had time for'em

Dave said...

I've heard about studies, and experienced it myself, that salespeople react to what they perceive.

I usually wear khakies (sp?) and a golf shirt or casual long sleeved shirt to work. When I wear a suit, people react differently.

Weekends, I dress worse than you describe yourself. When I shop, I'm part of the great unwashed. On the rare occassion that I'm presentable, I'm addressed as "Sir, how may I help you?"

Posolxstvo said...

There is a Honda dealership within spitting distance of my house. Did they get my business? No. Why? Because when I walked in there, no one would help me. And when I finally forced my way into a test drive, the dude who took me never returned my emails or calls. It might have had something to do with the fact that I was driving a 1995 Ford Piece of Shit and was dressed in my farting around the house clothes when I paid my first visit there.

I don't have any patience for people who aren't interested in my money when I finally decide to part with it.

The dealer I did buy from is 10 miles away, but since my first contact was over the Internet there was no opportunity for that initial disparaging impression.

Hedy said...

Hey Molly! Thanks for being here...The couch thing was totally our fault, of course. Who leaves a 4-month old puppy alone with a new couch? Who does that? He thought it was one ginormous stuffed toy and proceeded to de-stuff it, like he does with all the new toys he gets. As for silly pretentious salespeople - the thing that kills me is they're hurting themselves. Especially these days when THE WORLD has gone casual, why would you ever make assumptions about people based on appearances? Dave/Pos: As usual, glad to have you. Let's start a club. SOWUT: Slobs Of the World UniTe!

Posolxstvo said...

A club? That sounds so formal...

As Groucho once said, I'm not sure I'd want to join a club that would have me as a member.

babis said...

hi. i'm babis. and I, the small snuggle bear want you to come over and visit me, suz, and my sister babot. shes a bear too. you can bring grommit to but make sure he doesnt eat me.

Hedy said...

BABIS! Welcome back! We've missed you! I can't wait to meet your sister Babot. Give Suz a big hug from me - and Grommie the Dog says "Hi!" :)