Tuesday, November 30, 2010

232. All Those Parties

Every year, we throw lots and lots of parties (I'm being facetious here: think two). When the Husband and I are preparing for said party, words like “paper plates” and “plastic cups” and even “cooler of beer” are bandied about.

The high-end kitchen store where I work would have you think otherwise. High-end kitchen store believes in crystal for the children’s instant-powdered orange juice and $250 platters from France to lay out some stale Chips Ahoy cookies for an after-school snack. At the high-end kitchen store, no event (read: morning coffee) is considered too mundane to get out the real linen napkins.

So the Princessa in me (she’s in there, hi P!) lovingly walks around the high-end kitchen store pretending to “work”, saying hi-may-I-help-you to random shoppers, all the while stopping to pet the holiday table display with the 12 Days of Christmas plates and Nutcracker napkin rings. Princessa thinks this would work well for her next sit-down dinner party for 12. Yes, yes, there’s that formal dinner party on the calendar:  the day after never.

Princessa ignores the calendar. She goes right back to ogling the beautiful merchandise that the high-end kitchen store buyers on the West Coast have deemed Desirable this year, or better yet, Must-Have. Princessa adores those West Coast buyers, and firmly believes that this entire crystal/china/linen section is necessary to her complete well-being and happiness.

Princessa’s itty-bitty Paycheck ($132.77) begs to differ. With the brutal honesty Paycheck has been known for in the past, Paycheck spells it out for Princessa by phone (although Princessa likes the idea of online-banking, it’s so easy to just dial the automated system and punch in a few numbers). Paycheck rudely leaves off a few crucial zeroes.

On behalf of inner-Princessa, I boldly and confidently confront The Boss when she doesn't look too busy (she is only calculating the store's profit margin for the past 3 months and making a grid chart with units-per-transaction sold ratio compared to number of employees scheduled to present to the Regional Director who will be here in 10 minutes), “Excuse me, Boss? Uh, when I called about my paycheck, it turns out...... I mean, ummm...... I think the amount is, uh, wrong?

She nods at me; she understands this horrific situation. Then, she kindly looks up my hours in the computer, only hesitating to roll her eyes once or possibly twice this time.

“You are absolutely right. It’s wrong,” she confirms in her no-nonsense tone (the same tone she tells employees they will be working at 4 AM the day after Thanksgiving and until midnight on Christmas Eve).

I smile for myself and Princessa. I knew it!

“We overpaid you by about 1.5 hours. But you know, MOV, it’s not a big deal. You deserve it.” Now she is nodding at me, nod-nod-nod, the same nod she gives customers when she demonstrates the espresso machines, you-really-need-this-so-buy-it-today. I am nodding, too. I don’t need a new espresso machine, but I do very much need the extra hour-and-a-half of pay.

Princessa is pouting. “But, but, but what about the new silverware I need for all those parties?” she wonders to herself, her blue Princessa eyes filling with tears.

After work, Princessa and I stop somewhere and purchase the much-needed silverware: plastic, $4.99 for a set of 20, from the corner drugstore by my house. 


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