Where Class Comes to Die…

My thumbs ached, still healing from the blisters I had from the last sign removal project. My arms and shoulders didn’t hurt as much, but my wrists and finger tips were raw and cracking from the dry air they had been exposed to in the vestibule as I worked. My mind and body exhausted from the project. I spend another two hours attempting to remove the residual adhesive from the sign so I could replace the strip with another adhesive I had purchased at Office Max.

It had almost been three weeks since I began my journey in Visual, and it had been a week since my first successful installment of some signs that we were asked to adhere to the glass of our entrance doors. The fiasco to follow consisted of misinformation from my Regional Supervisor on a conference call, and resulted in me incorrectly positioning the signs on the doors, making the already difficult task of removing the signs from the holders even worse.

The last time I had to take one of our store sign holders off one of our doors it took me three hours. This time it took me an extra hour. Not because it was any different of an adhesive on the door, but because when I was preparing the sign to be carefully pried off the glass, I noticed a 6 inch crack in the exterior glass pane. At first I worried that perhaps when I installed the sign the last time, I had pressed too much, and caused an imperfection in the glass to crack, which was possible. I worried that I would be blamed for the issue, but then I realized that it was a situation that didn’t require worry. Even if it was my fault the doors were decades old, and in need of replacing anyway. I was able to get a moment with our maintenance man to inspect it, but the crack had advanced several more inches in my time of seeking him out and we both made a point to tape off that particular entrance door before another customer could come in. He stared at it and we discussed plans to repair it, but it wasn’t long before I realized the wedge system I had prepared to take the signs down was not going to be effective. It might break the glass further. So I spent several hours soaking the sign with Goo Gone and prying at it with my bare hands.

As I write this now, that sign is still unfinished.

Still, I wouldn’t go back to Customer Service. Overhearing conversations at the front of the store with customers, griping rudely to the associates about how they didn’t know their jobs, and how expensive things were reminded me of how awful it was to deal with them. One woman in particular was upset an Armani Suit cost $200 on sale. Inside my head I chuckled. The suit was regularly $800 and the sale was practically a steal for an Armani. People around here didn’t know that though.

When I was a teenager I worked in Chicago in a retail job. People thought nothing of spending $50 on a scarf. People wouldn’t bat an eye at a $200 Armani. They might knife each other to get to it, but they wouldn’t think twice about the price. They’d jump at it. But I had to keep reminding myself this was a closed minded small town. The gas could be down to a dollar a gallon and people would still complain about having to drive at all. The price of an 100% Silk suit could be $200 or less and they would say it probably was cheaply made. A 14kt diamond could be $75 and it “isn’t pretty enough to pay that much.”

Around here is where class and expense comes to die.