Archive for May, 2007

My buddy, Ron, started a thread in the HorrorTalk forum describing a cross promotion in Albertson’s that just wasn’t quite right.

Apparently, they are promoting the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie, and hung various items throughout the store. He was thoughtful enough to take pictures:

mmmmm good! The meat is fresh! Tastes great, good for you!

After laughing at the great pics Ron took, I was reminded of yet another glorious moment from my retail days. When I was working for the now defunct F&M, there came a time when the Powers That Be really started pushing tie ins. Basically, they wanted you to make all of the endcaps with at least two items. (IE a big display with paper plates, with a smaller display of plastic forks flanking it. Stuff like that.)

But it wasn’t just about endcaps, they also wanted you to use floor displays to maximum potential, too. So if you had a battery display, they’d want you to set it up in, say, the toy aisle.

I had fun with the tie ins. It became a sort of game with my manager and I, on who could find the most f’d up tie in. Like an endcap of toilet paper flanked with a Drano tie in. That sort of thing.

One day, a floor display of Trojan condoms arrived in the warehouse. As it came in towards the end of my shift, I placed it deep in the warehouse so the manager coming on duty wouldn’t set it up. This was mine. I had plans.

The next day, before the store opened, I set up the Trojan display. In the baby products aisle. The way I looked at it, people who were there buying formula and pacifiers would see the Trojan display and be reminded what a pain in the ass kids were, and pick up a box or two of Trojans. Brilliant.

Later that afternoon, as the store manager was doing his daily walk through of the store, he called over the walkie talkie that he needed me in aisle four. I chuckled. Aisle four was the baby aisle.

When I got there, he was smiling. “Nice one,” he said. “But you are handling any complaints.” My manager was pretty damn cool (I was an assistant manager at the time. Not an assistant to the manager like Dwight on “Office Space,” but a bonifide assistant manager.)

I didn’t have to wait long. Actually, it was only about an hour later when I was paged, by name, over the intercom for customer assistance in aisle four. When I arrived, I saw a lady, obviously pissed off, baby in tow.

“Can I help you?” I asked. Always pleasant.

“What in the hell is this?” She asked, directed my attention to a condom display.

“That is a condom display.”

“I can see that. What the hell is it doing here?” She was obviously one of those soccer moms. You know, the kind that have no time for jokes when it comes to the beauty of creation.

“It’s a tie in.” I explained.

“In the baby aisle? Why the hell would someone put a condom display in the baby aisle??”

“To sell condoms,” I said. She was dense. And oh so very pissed.

“Do you know how distasteful this is? Babies are a blessing!”

“I realize that,” I explained, “but not everyone wants to keep having them after the first, second or fifth one.”

“This display has no purpose in this aisle!” She exclaimed, face red. I will admit, though, she wasn’t raising her voice.

I pointed out the two missing slots in the display. “Obviously, it’s working. I’ve sold two packs since I put it up this morning.”

“You set it up! I should have figured! What the hell were you thinking?”

“Two things. The first is the sales, which are already happening. The second is my sister has a son. She said she would never have kids again after him. I’m thinking of people like her.”

“Is your sister older or younger?” The lady asked.

“Older.”

“What would you think if your mother had bought condoms from a display like this after she had had your sister?”

“I think we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”

She stormed out in a huff. I didn’t have to relay the story to my manager, as he was in the next aisle listening and, most likely, laughing. And while he didn’t yell at me for the conversation, he did make me move the condom display.

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Wow! I suck at the updates as of late!

So this coming weekend is part two of “kids at Uncle Stewie’s house.” A couple weekends ago, the nephew came up and it was pretty fun. Even explaining why “porch monkey” was a bad thing to call someone, among other things he learned from Kevin Smith, didn’t put a damper on the festivities at all.

This weekend, the niece is coming up to hang out. I don’t really have anything planned, except maybe to watch Jaws. Last time she was up she had expressed an interest in the movie while at the same time all but saying she didn’t want to watch it alone. Since Jaws is such a kick ass movie, I can’t wait to introduce her to it.

Maybe she’ll pick up some new phrases to take home like her brother did.

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This made me laugh.

The Landlord

Kids are just so precious.

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Got tagged by Ace:

1. Add a direct link to your post below the name of the person who tagged you. Include the city/state and country you’re in.

Nicole (Sydney, Australia)
velverse (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
LB (San Giovanni in Marignano, Italy)
Selba (Jakarta, Indonesia)
Olivia (London, England)
ML (Utah, USA)
Lotus (Toronto, Canada)
tanabata (Saitama, Japan)
Andi (Dallas [ish], Texas, United States)
Lulu (Chicago, Illinois, United States)
Chris (Boyne City, Michigan, United States)
AB (Cave Creek, Arizona, United States)
Johnny Yen (Chicago, Illinois, USA)
Bubs (Mt Prospect, Illinois, USA)
Ace (Hillsborough, New Jersey, USA)
Stewie (Naptown, Maryland, USA)

2. List out your top 5 favorite places to eat at your location.

3. Tag 5 other people (preferably from other countries/states) and let them know they’ve been tagged.

Easy enough.

So here’s my top 5 favorite places to eat around me.

1. The Coffee Shop — Technically a drink joint, but they have muffins and crap. And I go there every chance I get. So it counts. Great coffee, great ambiance.

2. That Chinese Buffet In The Same Parking Lot As Ace Hardware — The food is decent, but the service is great and the price is even better. I try to go there once a week. They gave me a Christmas gift last year.

3. The Pho Place Behind Food Lion — The Pho Bo Vien is f’ing awesome. And considering there aren’t that many Pho places in my area, it means that much more. Really, really good Pho. Plus it sits in the same parking lot as a decent used bookstore, so it’s a win/win for me when I go.

4. That Mexican Joint Up There By Safeway — The people who own it are from Texas. But the wife is originally from Mexico. So the Mexican food is really Mexican. I like their tacos and coffee.

5. The Donut Shop That’s Open 24 Hours — I’ve only been there once when the power was out in my house. The lady was real nice and had a cool accent. She let me read for an hour, even though I only bought two donuts. The coffee was a tad weak, but it was 9:00 at night. I’m betting the bring out the strong stuff after 11:00.

I’ll tag no one. Feel free to jump on it if you want.

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About a week ago, The Lesley presented me with Thinking Blogger Award. Being the insensitive prick that I am, I didn’t bother posting anything about it, as I should have.

In my defense, I’ve been incredibly busy, but that doesn’t negate the fact that I’m an insensitive prick.

First and foremost, thank you Lesley. (And screw you guys, I thanked Lesley last week, too, when I saw it. Now I’m doing it publicly).

Now the rules:

The rules behind this Thinking Blogger Thing are as follows:

1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think.
2. Link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme.
3. Optional: Proudly display the ‘Thinking Blogger Award’ with a link to the post that you wrote (here is an alternative silver version if gold doesn’t fit your blog).

This is really going to be tough, as I love all the blogs I read. There are times that all of them make me think, and there are times when they don’t.

So, without further ado, here we go:

1. Walking Atlas — Hands down, the blog I read that makes me think 99% of the time. The blogs listed after this are in no particular order, but Atlas is the one that makes me think most. I wish Brik would update more, but really, who am I to say anything.

2. Sometimes Sisyphus — This one is on (hopefully) temporary hiatus. I love Sue’s blog. It always makes me laugh. Sue and I see some things differently, but she’s a strong enough writer to make me see her point of view, rather than disagree with it off the cuff.

3. Life on the Rim — While he’s been making me gag with his new girlfriend posts, Ace sometimes throws out some Civil War trivia, among other little tidbits. I’m not much into the Civil War history, but Ace never bores me with his posts about it.

4. Hail Saten — Brian Keene’s blog. He used to keep a blog that had writing tips, but that seems to have gone defunct. But Saten is a great read, especially one Keene goes on a rage.

5. Everybody Else is Doing It — The former roomies blog. Since I never call or write, this is how I keep up with her life, now that she’s moved out.

There are definitely some honorable mentions. There is a chickie on myspace who writes a kick ass blog. Timewarp’s blog on myspace is pretty damn good, too. I used to love Lance F’ing Henriksen’s blog, but it’s no longer updated. And a director friend of mine kept a pretty cool blog when he was filming his last movie that was fun to read.

So, as ol’ Gump would say, that’s all I have to say about that.

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