Hi everyone! After my last blog you’re probably wondering if everything is okay. The truth is my Christmas was a total blast! I loved it all: the chocolates for breakfast; the quality time with our i-Phones teenagers; and the Facebook envy-induced cry for help challenge (PS I’m okay, guys. The roof was only 10 feet high- I just twisted an ankle). Just when I thought the fun was over I remembered the yuletide’s piece de resistance: returning the unsuitable gifts. AKA: the final straw.
On Boxing Day, I decided to make turkey soup, take down the tree, put away the decorations, do some laundry, clean the bathrooms, change the bedding, unload the dishwasher, bake some muffins, re-paint the dining room, and scream at everyone for not helping. Then after lunch I tackled something huge: I went to the busy mall to exchange a t-shirt.
The parking lot was jam-packed. After circling for over an hour I had no choice but to pull out my pellet gun and shoot the windows out of a car that was sitting in a juicy spot. Once the tow truck hauled it away, I sidled right in there. Bam! Walking towards the mall, I stopped traffic by raising my skirt hand in a confident fashion. I was taking things into my own hands and it felt pretty darn illegal good. Within minutes I had arrived at the store. When I saw the line-up snake out the door and down the hallway, I briefly considered taking a hostage to make clear my disdain. Thankfully I got a hold of myself and kicked over a large garbage can and screamed, “What the F#$!!!” instead.
I joined the line and we shuffled like inmates towards the light of the store, each wondering when we’d see the outside again. After standing there for three hours, I could feel my patience waning. I thought about going apeshit home but stuck it out and tried to get some perspective; I decided the poor woman in front of me giving birth to twins had it worse than I did. How the heck was she going to return her stuff now??
By nightfall, things were looking up: the babies were swaddled; the nice custodian gave us some chairs; and I broke the Internet with some tasteful topless selfies. (Don’t be jealous. I bet you’re good at something too). Just as I was about to photobomb the self-absorbed, attention-seeking newborns, I heard: “I can help who’s next.” I was giddy with disbelief as I crawled towards the cash register. With a bolt of energy I greeted the security guard: “Unhand me, you idiot!! I’ll put my top back on just as soon as you regulate the temperature in this #$%ing joint!!”
After my ‘gentle warning’ (Blah blah blah) I removed the t-shirt from the bag and said, “I’d like this in another color please.” The way she took to her keyboard typing furiously, I think she heard, “Please go to Interpol immediately. I am wanted for a heinous crime.” The clickety clack of the keyboard went on for days. I suggested this was neither the time nor place to complete her Anthropology disser-#$%ing-tation!
FINALLY she looked up (kidding!). She said, “I just have a few questions before I can release the new t-shirt.” Fair enough. She began with the basics: “Name? Street? Postal code? Email? Phone number? Reason for returning the merchandise? Allergies? Eye color? Hobbies? Favorite food? Deepest secret? Biggest regret?” It took guts for me to reveal I stole that satin hat from Sears when I was 12 but I did feel better once it was out.
Next, she scanned the t-shirt, clacked on the keyboard for 30 more minutes, and then spoke into the James Bond-ish microphone that was pinned to her strappy cami: “Exchange at front desk please. Exchange at front desk. I repeat: Exchange at front desk.” The employee standing directly beside her spoke into his mic next: “I’m on it.” He fetched the new t-shirt; the keyboard enthusiast scanned it, and slipped it into a bag. Then we waited while the machine spit out a football-field long receipt, which I had to sign in 78 places. “Am I free to go now?” I asked. She threw her head back and laughed maniacally. “Ha! Ha! Very funny! Have you filled out our survey yet? Registered for our monthly draw? Provided a urine sample?”
I handed over the scant (YOU try whizzing in front of people and see how much makes it inside the bottle! Frig.) sample; put my top back on and strolled to my car only to realize I had left the t-shirt on the counter. I calmly found my way to the mall roof (20 footer). After my landing, I yelped, “I’m okay, guys! I just twisted a femur!”
It turns out the hospital stay was the piece de resistance of this yuletide: my meals were provided; I had lots of time for selfies; and most importantly it gave me a chance to reflect on how to improve the holidays for next year. AKA: Bermuda Triangle.