Small rant for today, with my apologies. Just the more I think about it, the more annoyed I get. I don't have a picture of it, so here is a picture of my attitude about it. I'm speaking of the kiosks in shopping malls. It seems that there are more and more of them all the time, right down the center of those huge corridors, each one manned by a spider just waiting to pounce on it's unsuspecting prey.
Ok I confess, part of the problem is mine. I have a terrible time saying "no" to people. I know these kiosk pilots are just doing their jobs and they have to make a living too. I get that. The same way I understand that telemarketers are not bad people, they are just trying to make a buck like anyone else. But I don't have to l like it. And it's worse in the mall because it's not anonymously over the phone, it's live and in person.
I don't go to the mall often but recently Tim and I went to one while we were wandering around Tampa, just to see what there was to see. We had lunch nearby and rather than go straight home, decided to walk off lunch. It was a cold and rainy day or we would have walked outside before you remind me that was an option. We wandered for a bit and then Tim excused himself to the restroom. Not knowing that particular mall, I thought it best to remain nearby. It was, unfortunately, a kiosk heavy area. I walked slowly through around window shopping, carefully not making eye contact and got nabbed anyway.
A pretty young girl with a heavy accent drew me over, despite my prostestations to her cart. I didn't want to make too much of a fuss over not wanting to be there, afterall, I was still going to have to wait in that area and I don't want to be THAT person. Since I didn't have the option of just walking away and disappearing from sight, I sighed and decided that the best course of action would be to just smile and nod and then say no thank you.
It was some sort of face cream as it turned out that would make me look 20 again. There is a mighty task, I thought to myself. Good Luck with that!. She applied some sort of cream under the eye and around my smile on one side only so I could "see the difference". She talked the entire time and the part that I could understand was so rediculous. "You are so beautiful" she said, "This is a secret recipe" she wispered. I rolled my eyes inwardly. At last she was done and produced a mirror. "Look" she said proudly, "See how amazing you look". I looked. Well, she didn't lie about that part. There were fewer laugh lines, no question about it. I looked a little lopsided.
"What do you think?" she asked, "I know you love it". I didn't want to hurt her feelings (that's my bad, I guess) "It was an interesting experiment" I nod, "But..." "Let me show you, you won't believe the price" she pulls me over to her register and hands me a box which, I automatically received. She points to the read-out, "See normally it's $600, but for you, today, because I like you so much, today, this is only $150! It's a special price, just for you. Don't tell anyone" She was done.
Seriously, do I look that stupid?
"No thank you" I try to hand the box back to her. Because she is better at this than I, she managed to not take it. We went back and forth a few times. Finally, I set the box on the narrow ledge and started backing away. She narrowed her eyes and looked very angry. Tim had returned by this time so I walked toward him quickly and I heard myself say to her, "Thank you for your time" . What the heck is that matter with me?
For everyones sake, but especially for weenies like me, I am speaking out. I should be allowed to go to the mall without the anxiety of being accosted by kiosk people. There I said it. Anytime I walk through those doors, I see where I need to be, put my head down and charge. I feel like I'm running a gauntlet. It honestly makes me think twice about ever shopping there.
Obviously, I am in the minority because I see mall parking lots filled to capacity all of the time. I guess everyone else learned how to say no without guilt, how to say no and look firmly enough in that decision that the kiosk people believe it, say no sternly enough that the kiosk folk just back off entirely. But should we have to do that at all? I don't know. I'm not a mean person, I'm a nice person. I want to go have a nice guilt-free, no-free, wander through the mall, window shopping and maybe have some lunch. I don't think that's too much to ask, is it?
Not only that, but that magic cream itched like crazy, felt like sand paper and I couldn't wait to wash it off. I will just have to embrace my laugh lines and my life lines and not look like I'm twenty again. Yeah, I can live with that.
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.