>Husband and I had quite an experience shopping recently. We went to three stores, and we had to call for a manager in all three.
In the first store, let’s call it Office Heaven, I couldn’t find the notebooks I wanted. The store has recently remodeled and rearranged and makes no sense whatsoever. I walked through the computer section three times vefore I gave in and asked a clerk to point me toward the multi-packs of steno notebooks. There was only one option, it was pricey, and the steno books were ugly (plain white cover extolling the virtues of Office Heaven itself), so I decided to try another store. Meanwhile, Husband had picked out a small technology item for Amigo. The price on the package and the product name/code matched one price on the shelf, but a different price rang up at the register: $20 higher than the price we saw. The manager muttered and grumbled indecisively, but finally gave us the lower price.
Store two, Extreme Office Supplies, didn’t have my steno books either. They were out of stock for the second time this month. The folks in charge couldn’t give me an answer, either, when I asked when such an item might come in. “Oh, we never know how many we’ll sell. It’ll automatically reorder if we sell a lot.” I reminded them that they’d been out of these notebooks two weeks ago as well. No answer. None.
Store three, the Greatest Party Show on Earth, had also rearranged and remodeled to a point where I didn’t know where anything was any more. The clerk led us to the table skirt I need to cover the computer cords hanging from my classroom pod, and I wandered around looking for odd and random and inexpensive pencils for my students. We found them, finally, at the checkout. Three boxes of random designs, marked down to ten cents a pencil! Hey, honey, start counting. I want fifty. The clerk scanned one, hit the buttons to multiply by 50, and came up with — 24 cents a pencil. Oops! She called a manager, who verified that the right price was one thin dime per writing implement and unlocked the register so she could fix my total.
We came away with good deals and most of what we wanted. However, we imagined the neighboring stores setting up lookouts. “Here they come, that innocent looking couple we told you about! Check all your prices and shelf tags. Quick! Before they come in the door! Find the ‘Closed’ sign! OMG, it’s only Back to School. I hope they don’t shop here for Christmas.”