Monday, May 30, 2005
This is a mystery. Apparently, according to my Wenger watch, it's 9:45 a.m. on Saturday, May 28. And I'm awake. That's weird. And, judging by my ability to see more than 10 feet in front of me, I've only had one Bloody Mary. Hmmm. Time to assess my surroundings and try to figure this shit out.
Ok - there are lots of people around and no-one's dressed in black so, I'm neither at a funeral nor in New York City. But I am in line for something [and, no, Jazzy and Reebster, it's not an Israeli DJ playing in the basement of a club in Manhattan.....]. Hold on a sec! I see that Dan Marino is also standing in line, about 2 people ahead of me [for real!], waiting to get into some sort of auditorium. Ok - that only happens in South Florida. Narrowing it down here. Also, there's a parking lot full of Beemers, Benzes, Hummers, Rovers, Infinitis and Lexus 300s [and, oh yeah, one dirty Jeep Wrangler with Spongebob Squarepants dangling from the rearview mirror].....Well, hell, I'm clearly at a high school graduation in North Broward!
And then it all comes back to me.....[insert swirly flashback visual here and cut to the following conversation]:
Sassy: I can't decide what to wear to your graduation, dude.
Nizzle: Um - clothes would be good.
Sassy: Dammit. I was thinking bikini and board shorts.
Nizzle: Yeah right.
Sassy: Ok - how 'bout my "White Trash" t-shirt? [A gift from Jazzy. She loves me.]
Nizzle: Um .... no.
Sassy: Ok - how 'bout my "Black Power" tank top?
Nizzle: Um .... no.
Sassy: The "Down With Whitey" one?
Nizzle: Look. You can wear whatever you want. I just may never speak to you again. So pick accordingly....
Sassy: Fine. What are you writing on your cap?
Sassy: You gotta write something on your cap in Wite-Out or Liquid Paper, or whatever it is you kids use these days.
Nizzle: For real? What should I write?
Sassy: I don't know. "Wordsworth rulz" or something. I wrote, "Thanks Mom & Dad" on my law school grad cap.
Add the above dialogue to the fact that Nizzle's mom is crying to my left and I realize the answer to the Burning Question: Yeah - I am definitely at Nizzle's Graduation [Congrats Class of '05]. And can I just tell you, it was a fricking hoot!
First of all, don't worry. Despite my teasing, and because I love him, I actually settled on a nice pair of linen, pin-striped (and cuffed!) slacks, with a dark green safari jacket. I figured the quasi-militant look, coupled with my natural "tan" would get the "Fight The Power" message across to all the richies. [Actually, it's my newest outfit and I'd been dying to wear it. I'm not that activist, sorry.....]. And after only one costume change, Ben was appropriately attired in a navy blazer, Joseph A. Banks shirt, and tan slacks. Damn - we looked like yuppies. Oh well. Next thing you know, we are standing in line with Marino, waiting to see Nizzle complete the first of many rites of passage to come.
We find our seats and, now that I am almost 100% conscious, I take in my surroundings. The guy seated in front of us says "Hi" to Nizzle's mom and they have a brief chit chat. Then, his wife returns and goes off [and I do mean "goes off"] on him, apparently because he took her seat....Um...huh? Oooookaaay. So he gets up and moves four seats down on the other side of their kids, per wifey's instructions. During that maneuver, hubby makes some ill-advised comment under his breath to which his "lady" responds by flamboyantly (and vehemently) flipping him the bird, stretching her arm across the faces of the children now sitting between them. Wow. And people say rich blondes aren't classy!
I read the program and notice, to my relief, that Nizzle's name is actually on the list of graduating seniors. Apparently, my priceless homework assistance (and, in particular, the William Wordsworth project) paid off. Actually, my homework assistance wasn't exactly priceless. Nizzle paid the price in many ways: washing my Jeep; mowing the lawn; trimming the hedges; looking after Sam and Playdough; setting up my wireless print server, etc. Damn! Who's gonna do all that shit now that he's graduating?!?
Alright - back to the matter at hand. "Pomp & Circumstance" is ringing out and the seniors are slowly filing into the auditorium. And 194 students later, there's Nizzle! [Having a last name beginning with the letter "Z" is a bitch...] As Nizzle takes his seat, it becomes apparent that his cap looks different from all the others. Slowly, a buzz builds as people whisper, "What is that on his cap?" Ahhh.....it's good to stand out.
Nizzle's cap. It's true - Wordsworth rulz!
Now, having seen this masterpiece, I'm thinking I might need to borrow some of Nizzle's mom's tissues. What a cool dude!
Anyway, we sit through a bunch of presentations, awards, choir songs, etc. Next thing you know, the nice Jewish lady in front of us puts on her orange suede jacket with sequins [I can't make that shit up], and it's time for:
The.......... school................ president's............. speech.
Holy shit. It took forEVER! Seriously. During the speech, I was able to finish that New York Times Sunday crossword puzzle I'd been struggling with since June 1985; Ben designed and built a monohull sailboat for the next America's Cup; Playdough and Sam resolved their differences; the Federal Reserve cut interest rates; Sassy's blood alcohol level dipped below 1.9; the Michael Jackson jury returned a "not guilty" verdict; the Rolling Stones retired; a Democrat was voted into the White House; and my ex-husband, Norman, made a decision. It was one LONG ass speech, dude.
Finally, Nizzle takes the stage to get his diploma and we hoot and holler. [Ben wouldn't let me yell out "Yo, my Nizzle!". I guess that was good advice.] Nizzle's mom cries some more. And we go to lunch at Fridays where, thankyoujesus, they serve alcohol.
In all seriousness, it was a good time. Some of the school president's jokes were funny; the choir was pretty good; the baby pictures of the seniors were adorable. And now - my boy, my Nizzle, one of my very best friends (even though we met less than two years ago), well - he's a bona fide high school graduate. And now - I have four years to plan what to wear to his graduation from Auburn. Congrats, Nizzle. [Seriously- who IS gonna wash the Jeep now?]
Slightly Sad Sassy
Sunday, May 29, 2005
Who am I kidding....I can't pretend to act all cool and nonchalant about this! Last night...I was TOTALLY HANGING OUT WITH THE BOYS FROM SNOW PATROL AND ATHLETE!!! Ohmigod!!!!!!!! How frigging awesome!
Loyal readers, I am so happy to report that music is alive and well (and, apparently, living in the U.K.)! Thanks to our dear friend (and world famous photographer), MJ, we scored a couple of tickets to the Culture Room, where the aforementioned bands delighted hundreds of adoring fans with their sublime, surreal, sweet and sassy sounds. And Sassy was standing in the front row, holding onto the edge of the stage, in complete and utter ecstasy! Thank you, Michael Joseph!
There's no point trying to describe the kickass music these lads produce...you simply must listen to it for yourself. It will change your life, I swear. Seriously - go download their albums right now, put on "Wires" by Athlete or "Run" by Snow Patrol, and come back to this page to continue reading my blather.
Ok - so here's what happened. We got to the venue early and decided to pop over to the Irish pub for a couple of drinks before claiming our tickets. Two scotches and a couple of Bass ales later, we got in line, just ahead of a fun group of kids from Chicago, who are crisscrossing the country to follow the bands. (Kids still do that! Who knew?) Having only recently discovered Snow Patrol myself, I was delighted to hear these diehard fans promising me an excellent show.
"If you like Snow Patrol on CD, you're gonna LOVE them live!" they all exclaimed. "And the opening band ROCKS!" they added.
"Really?" I respond. "Who is opening for them?"
"ATHLETE!!!!!!!!!" they practically scream at my head, as if I just fell off the turnip truck. Then they proceeded to list all the other bands I should be listening to, including Embrace and Idlewild. By this point, I am thoroughly excited and giggling with the girls in glee as the band members stroll past us (apparently heading to Target for a last minute shopping spree before the show).
Finally, we get into the club. By the way - a GREAT setting for concerts. No bad seats in the house, as they say. (Actually - there really aren't any seats at all). I immediately buy a Snow Patrol t-shirt, whip my own blouse off, and - in a total, unabashed groupie move - put on the SP top. Oh, and once we got inside - more good news - they have a bar within 10 paces of the stage. Now, y'all just know Sassy was in heaven!
Ben and I work our way to the front and park at the edge of the stage. And then, Athlete comes out and rocks my world. After they sweep me off my feet, Snow Patrol saunters out and simply KICKS MAJOR ASS! [Again - there's no point trying to describe the quality and caliber of the music from these two bands. By now, you should be listening to "El Salvador" by Athlete or "Chocolate" by SP]. Ben and I dance, sing, hug, laugh, sing, dance, drink, laugh....it was a great show. The bands totally engage the audience and make you feel like they dropped everything just to come and sing for you...and you get the feeling they're happy, inspired, and honored to be doing so.
Ok - so the show ends, as shows tend to do. And we head back over to the bar (because my Chicago posse told me they heard the word on the street...and the word was that the bands were heading over there after the gig). Sure enough, the bands enter and the crowd goes wild. Ok - no one went wild - but there was much love. One thing leads to another and next thing you know [and some of you do know what happens when I am out in public], I have a tab at the bar, acccessible to anyone who knows the password (last night it was Nicholas Gemini - don't ask) and me, the Chicago posse, and the bands, are partying it up. The good news is, Ben tells me my tab was only $90. Apparently, one of the guys from Athlete was buying my drinks...ROCK ON!
The hours go by, I have these deep, heartfelt conversations with Stephen (drummer - Athlete) and Gary (lead singer - SP), I drink some more scotches, I high-five the girls from Chicago, and I kill all the brain cells that were actually recording the conversations I was having. Oh well. The good news is that Ben said I looked like I was having a blast and one of the guys from the band came over and told him he had a great gal. So there.
Anyway - it was a wonderful show - even if Ben and I were like the oldest people there. I love my new t-shirt. Gonna go put it on right now.
Snow Patrol and Athlete RULE!!!!!!!!
Slightly Hungover Sassy
P.S. Stayed tuned for Nizzle's Graduation story....
Friday, May 27, 2005
Come on, white people! Y'all know that drugs don't blind people; masturbation does.....
Thursday, May 26, 2005
By the way - in case you care about other real sports: Barbadian cricketers, Westside Cavaliers, suffered a mild setback in Fort Lauderdale last Sunday, losing to Oswald Park II, by just two wickets in the limited overs match. Floyd Ingram tendered a resounding 44 runs for the Jamaican team, while Clint Corbin headed up the Cavaliers offense with 25. Even though the Cavaliers seemed to start the day with confidence and strong batting, it seems they lacked the arm of their star, award-winning bowler, David Brathwaite, when the time came to dispatch their opponents. As a result of the disappointing performance, the Cavs have slipped to seventh in the division standings and will have to tap into that Bajan pride if they want to gain ground before season's end.
GO WESTSIDE CAVS!
[Another Ed. note: Yes, readers, Sassy is a British/Bajan and therefore, obviously, likes cricket. Luckily, that wonderful sport of gentlemen is played right across the street from our house on summer Sundays with teams made up of Caribbean ex-pats like Sassy. It's truly a delight to see them in their cricket whites....]
The only sport where they stop for tea...So civilized!
So, good news: the NFL countdown is up and Florida cricket is in season! Good times! Good times!
P.S. Dear T.O.: You better get your shit together if you want to play with my Eagles! I know you will. After all, if Ricky Williams can come back to the Dolphins...and a kiss can turn a frog into a king....well, anything's possible. I'm a believer.
Wednesday, May 25, 2005
A Re-Ignited Heat!
Ha haaaaaaaaaaaaa! Now that was entertainment! What a game! At some point near the end of the third quarter, Ben and I divided our psychic labors such that he was in charge of Heat Offense and I was in charge of Heat Defense. For any of you skeptics out there that think we didn't make a difference - I challenge you to compare the stats from the first 3 quarters with those of the final one.....[and then get back to me, cuz I'm not sure what those stats will reveal. I'm pretty sure we helped though....]
Anyway, here's what I learned about the NBA tonight:
1. Basketball is NOT a contact sport. Fouls because of "knees" and "pushing" and "blocking"??? Um - how else do you people execute a proper defense? I guess I'm too used to watching a sport where chop blocks and fingers to the eye are fairly common....Ben's theory re: the NBA and its contact penalties?: "Touch the other person as much as you can 'til you get caught." Of course, that's also his theory re: other things....
2. Hamilton's mask is filled with soluble steroids. Seriously, someone should test it. I mean, during the first half, Hamilton was hitting so many baskets, I became convinced he'd sold his soul to the devil. Naturally, I counteracted with my own satanic pact...and hence, the final outcome in favor of Miami. But, really...how much do we know about Hamilton's mask?
3. TNT doesn't give a shit about basketball. They just care about numbers and sponsors. Otherwise, why else would they split screen during a free throw attempt and over-dub with audio about some new stupid series called "The Closer"?
4. I am a Hi-Def Ho. Dude - if you don't have Hi-Def, you don't know what you're missing. More importantly, and specifically in regard to Item # 3 above, you don't know what you CAN miss. The ability to pause, fast forward, instant replay, etc.....well, let's just say the whole reason we went Hi-Def was for Football Season (which can't get here soon enough!). Since going Hi-Def, I have caught myself watching the oddest of programs - just because they were broadcast in Hi-Def! Like, I watched an entire show about the migration of birds from the Artic to the South Pole! I mean, there wasn't a single human in the whole program...and no sex, guns, bloody murders, or laser beams, or anything! Can you imagine?! Anyway, Hi-Def on plasma RULES! Thank you, Dell!
Ok - that's all I have for tonight's game.
LET'S GO HEAT!!!
Sassy from South F-L-A
P.S. Um....is it just me or was it fairly obvious that Carrie would win American Idol when, right before the announcement, Fox aired a huge NASCAR commercial? Vonzell was robbed....
Now, this is priceless. An 86 year old Granny, allegedly described as a "crazy old coot" by a pizza parlor worker, called 911 about twenty times within a half hour to complain that the pizza parlor refused to deliver her pie. And then, when the cops came to arrest Granny for abusing the emergency call system, she (in all her 5 foot tall, 96 pound glory) "attacked" the male officer, scratching, kicking, and biting. Man - she wanted some pizza bad, eh? It must be wicked good pie...
Now, y'all know I don't condone violence (except in special circumstances, usually involving ex-husbands), but I do understand Granny's behavior in this instance. I mean, there have been times when I myself was tempted to call up the National Guard to go in search of my chinese food. And hey - at least Granny's calls were about a legitimate problem...unlike the 911 calls made by a certain "Runaway Bride"....By the way - that crazy bitch got indicted today and I hope she either gets jail time or has to pay hefty fines. After all, if she was having second thoughts about marrying the dude, there were plenty other ways to handle it.
For starters, she could have called me. I would have given her the old "Triple S" treatment ("Standard Sassy Suggestions") as follows:
1. So you think you may not want to get married on Saturday? No problem. Go get pissed drunk immediately. The hangover you'll have tomorrow will make marriage seem easy.
2. Now that he's a born-again Christian, you think he isn't the party-boy he used to be when you got engaged? No problem. Go get pissed drunk immediately. Maybe seeing you passed out diagonally across the bed will remind him of the good times you used to have together.
3. He says you can't have sex anymore until after the wedding? No problem. Go get pissed drunk immediately. And then after the wedding, tell him that you've decided that abstinence really isn't that bad after all. That's what I call the Win-Win Kicker: He can't fault you for following a discipline he himself encouraged and you don't have to sleep with this bait-and-switch loser who will probably prematurely ejaculate on your wedding night anyway..... [Oh my!.....I apologize for that.....I...uh....I don't know where that came from.....Let's move on....]
4. You're worried what people will think about you if you call off the wedding? No problem. Go get pissed drunk immediately...and then, just stay that way. I think you'll find that you no longer give a rat's ass what anyone thinks, let alone 600 people you hardly know but invited to your wedding. You may still have to return the gifts though. Then again, if you get drunk enough, you can tell people you don't remember them giving you a gift.....[Faked memory loss is a wonderful tool, under-utilized by most.]
Speaking of memory loss - I can't remember what the original point of this post was....For some reason, I'm thinking Julia Roberts....Oh, right, I was talking about Runaway Brides and Mystic Pizza.....[Did y'all see that coming? I sure as hell didn't....]
Anyway, I bet Granny gets her pizza fix now. After all, they probably deliver to the police station all the time....
Sausages 'n' Sweet Peppers Sassy
Those darned circus clowns.....
Seriously, though: Nine people in a Toyota Corolla (including two in the trunk which, by the way, was closed)! Maybe she was trying to set a record? [Someone should have told her it's a phone-booth you're supposed to stuff, not an economy-sized sedan designed by Asians....]
Or maybe she was filming a commercial for Toyota? You know, something along the lines of: "The New Corolla: Fuel Efficient and Roomy!" or "Toyota: The Leader In Com-Packed Cars!"
[It's incidents like this that make me want to run away from the circus....]
Tuesday, May 24, 2005
Yep. Losing sucks.
Anyway, rather than focus on this stinging loss, I want to draw your attention to a few other things:
1. Kudos to Charles Barkley for wearing a BLUE suit! What was up with the Tan Tan Club (as I started calling the other three commentators)? Don't they have a production assistant or some other roadie to say, "Um...fellas? Y'all realize you are basically wearing the same outfit, right? I mean....you look retarded"? Aren't they married? Don't they have girlfriends? Cuz after all, any woman will tell you - don't get caught dead in the same dress as some other ho at the party. Ben pointed out that Magic was actually wearing a three piece suit. This is true. However, it was still all TAN!
2. NBA commentators suck and don't teach me anything about the game. It's true. If you're in the kitchen adding an ice cube to your scotch and can't see the TV screen, you have no godly idea of what's going on with the game. It seems to me that no one is actually calling the game. No play-by-play. Everyone is a fricking color commentator. [And, apparently, the color is tan]. And they never explain the penalties. At one point, I actually had to look up the 3 second violation on the Internet to figure out what the hell was going on! I mean, in the interest of cultivating fans, I think the commentators should explain some of the game's nuances to NBA neophytes like myself. After all, almost everything I know about the NFL I learned from Al Michaels, Frank Gifford, Boomer Esaison, Pat Summerall, and [God help me] John Madden [John taught me that turnovers are bad and the team with the most points at the end of the game wins]. Oh well - maybe the guys over at YouveGottaLoveSports.com can post a primer on penalties in the NBA section of their website so I can refer to it during Game 2.
3. Would someone please tell me what's up with Phantom of the Opera dude? I keep waiting for the commentators to bring us up to speed on Hamilton's mask but....well, see Item 2 above. I mean, I assumed he had a broken facial bone or something, but as far as I can remember [and yes, that's not far] Hamilton was wearing that thing last year as well...so wouldn't a fracture have healed by now? I dunno...there's got to be more to it. I am sure someone can enlighten me....(Kif?)
4. Miami Heat fans are truly a cohesive unit. I've been to dozens of basketball games over the years in places like Seattle, Philadelphia, New York (and even Puerto Rico) but I've never seen a home crowd quite like the Miami one. We went to several games at the Triple A last season and it was a blast! The music is rocking, the fans are rocking, it's crazy! I mean, Miami fans take a theme and run with it! Last year it was Back in Black; this year it's The Red Zone. So many red shirts it looks like the stands are empty! Miami fans follow every move on the court; they are into the game for every second. And let's not overlook a BenJo favorite: Heat Jam Junior! Those kids ROCK OUT! Woo hoo! Jam Jr.! Yeah! You go, kids![Um...I guess you kinda have to be there....] Anyway, even if you're not really a Heat fan, you've gotta admire the Heat fans....
Well, that's all I have to say about Game 1. Here's to a better outcome [for Miami] in Game 2.....
Monday, May 23, 2005
Sunday, May 22, 2005
And I'm one of the idiots who helped that lame-ass movie break the record. I want a refund.
If you are a Star Wars fan, the following may offend you. Then again, if you really are a fan, you already know what I am about to say: The latest Star Wars movie is a complete dud. Do you know why? I'll tell you:
1. There's no suspense*. No drama. I mean, we already know the ending before the movie starts: Anakin becomes Darth Vader (gets awful sinusitis and suffers some hideous disfigurement that requires him to wear that ridiculous mask); Padme/Amidala has twins Luke and Leia; Obi Wan survives; Yoda survives; R2D2 survives; C3PO survives; others die. The end. If you saw the first Star Wars movie (which was actually Episode 4) - and who hasn't - you know all that stuff. Why did I pay EIGHT BUX (plus tax) for that news? Knowing the fate of the main characters makes it difficult to get invested in the story. When Anakin and Obi Wan are fighting "to the death"....um.....well...BORING! (Ben said the best part was actually seeing Darth Vader's face catch on fire. As usual, he's right.) Anyway, I want a refund.
2. No good one-liners. Long gone are the days of hunky Han Solo and his dry sense of humor. Shit - even Chewbacca delivered a couple good one-liners back in the day. I think the only attempt at a cute quip in this latest installation was Anakin noting that their spacecraft was "coming in too hot" for a safe landing (the craft was on fire). Ha. Ha. Ha. I nearly peed myself. Seriously. The dialogue in this movie was so lame, repetitious, and devoid of any humor, I thought I was listening to John Madden on Monday night football. Yep. I definitely want a refund.
3. The battle scenes are drawn out and boring. As I said before, when you know the outcome of a fight, you tend to lose interest and prefer to focus on something more suspenseful, like whether your fingers can reach that last Raisenette stuck way down in the bottom of the box. Oh and by the way - I am so over the light saber. I get it: it's neon-colored, retractable, and hums. Big deal. I have a toy in my nightstand like that and, trust me, it provides way more excitement!
Did I mention I want a refund?
Seriously though, I feel like George Lucas had about 35 minutes' worth of material which he managed to stretch out to 2 hours of my life that I won't be getting back.
The only good thing about the whole ordeal was that I got to snuggle up to Ben, who was trying to keep me warm in the fricking frigid cinema. That, and the fact that I learned there's a new movie coming out with Vince Vaughn, Owen Wilson and Christopher Walken. The Wedding Crashers. Now that's entertainment! I can't wait! Woo hoo!
* Sassy's Suggestion for Sith Suspense: Darth Sidious kidnaps Padme and holds her hostage until Anakin agrees to cross over to the Dark Side. We never know what happens while she is in captivity, but she keeps having nightmares about giving birth prematurely, even though she is still pregnant. Later, we learn that Darth Sidious has aborted Padme's pregnancy and impregnated her with his own evil seed!
Seriously, wouldn't that make Darth Vader's famous line ("Luuuke...I'm your father") much more interesting if we found out at the very end of it all that Darth Vader was sadly misinformed all along?? I'm just saying.....
Friday, May 20, 2005
Saddam? Or just damn sad...?
Well, folks - now that I've seen this image, I may never have sexual intercourse again. I have delivered the bad news to Ben.... He thinks I'm joking....
Seriously, though - I have to dash over to the hospital to get my eyeballs and frontal lobe surgically removed.
Soon-to-be Sightless Sassy
P.S. I think Saddam might be in dire need of a "personal shopping experience". Perhaps a visit from "Queer Eye for the Hate Guy"? Or maybe Martha Stewart could send over the pattern to that little prison poncho number she was rocking when she got sprung?
Yep. This would have definitely looked better on Hussein.
Anyway - gotta go. These eyes ain't gonna cut themselves out.....
Or as I prefer to call it: Pimp Prosecution Based On Ho's Say-So.
Say what?! You mean to tell me that, without any corroborating evidence from a third-party, a gentleman may now be prosecuted as a pimp, based solely on the testimony of a prostitute? What is the world coming to?!
Seriously. This new law is epic! It's like the one where they gave women the right to vote....
Tuesday, May 17, 2005
Yikes! That's harsh. Well, truth is, I don't blame them for firing this guy. I mean, if you're going to be disloyal to the Budweiser brand, at least trade up! Seriously, dude. At least say you got caught drinking a Sam Adams, or a Guinness, or a Banks beer! Jeez! Everyone knows that the only difference between Coors and Bud is the color of the label. Other than that, both so-called "beers" possess qualities oddly similar to carbon monoxide: They are odorless, tasteless, and put you to sleep.
Oh well. Maybe Coors will send the dude a case of Rocky Mountain High to console him. As for me, I'm sticking to my vodka (and my scotch...and my Mount Gay rum...). By the way, if any liquor distributors are reading this, feel free to direct complimentary cases of those fine spirits to my attention, care of Sassy Travels.
Ciao for now! (It's Happy Hour...)
Monday, May 16, 2005
[or "Decent Customer Service Is Hard To Find"]
by Sassy Springer
So me, Ben, and Bernie (my girlfriend who is visiting from Pennsylvania) are goofing around the strip mall near Victoria Park one sunny afternoon last week. I say to Bernie: "Hey, Bernie! You should check out this store." I turn to the plate glass windows in front of us and point at the racks of clothing. "They have some cool clothes."
Always on the look-out for tasty threads, Bernie responds with an eager: "Ni!" [Actually, she probably said, "Ok."]
And thus begins the neverending and yet, fruitless, quest for Decent Customer Service.
As if on a holy mission...they search high and low.
Y'all know what I'm talking about. Actually...do you even remember Decent Customer Service? It could as well be the Holy Grail - a mythical, magical memento of our time back in the early days at the beginning of the service industry. Nowadays, Decent Customer Service can't be found.
These days, all I ever get from the worker bees in the [lack of] service industry is Crappy Condescension and Couldn't Care Less attitudes. You know how it is: The bank teller (assuming you actually get to deal with a human being) can't do the math on your deposit slip for you anymore; the oil change guy leaves muddy foot prints all over the beige floor mats in your Jeep; the sandwich deli guy gives you brown mustard even though you specifically ask for yellow; your gynecologist refuses to warm the KY jelly. Stuff like that. It makes you want to launch a Holy Hand Grenade.
Yep. Decent Customer Service is as extinct as the dinosaurs...and my last two marriages...(but, I digress....) [Ahem]
I shall continue with my story now: [Scene reminder: sunny afternoon; strip mall in South Florida]
We approach the store innocently, dressed in typical South Florida attire of shorts, t-shirts, and flip flops. I think Ben is sporting a "Drifters Escape" visor from our boat; nothing unusual there. Yes, we are wearing sunglasses, but they are expensive Oakleys and/or Bolle polarized lenses. Further, we are clean (I mean, I think we all showered before we left home) and none of us is brandishing a weapon. [You will understand why I point out these details in short order].
I walk up to the glass door and try to pull it open. It doesn't budge. I assume that I have (as usual) overlooked the "Push" sign near the handle, so I try pushing the door. It doesn't budge. It dawns on all three of us at the same time that the door is ..... locked.
We look at each other perplexed.
"Are they closed?" Bernie wonders.
"Did you pull hard enough?" Ben queries.
"Are we in Spain?" I quip.
More perplexed looks from my companions, but this time directed at me.
"You know," I offer by way of explanation, "Spain? Siestas in the afternoon? Businesses close for a couple of hours every.....Oh never mind."
We turn our collective attention back to the unyielding door. Then we spot the problem. The problem is Spot. Well, maybe that isn't its name but a little poodle is running around inside the store so we figure that the door is locked so that Spot (or whatever its name is) can't run out to a tragic end in the parking lot of the strip mall. Ok. That makes sense.
Now, I notice the door bell. I press it.
[ Insert Ding dong sound effect here].
Readers, I want to warn you before you proceed any further - the remainder of this story may leave you speechless, breathless, clueless. It may piss you off. It may make you shake your fist in anger. You may cry. You may laugh. The story may cause you to contemplate felonious acts against store clerks. In the alternative, the story may bore you. Being thusly forewarned, read on at your own risk.
The store clerk (hereinafter "Bitch") comes to the door and unlocks it slowly. I am smiling. And not just my regular, low calorie, sugar-free smile, mind you. No sirreebob! I am offering her my 1000 megawatt, 24-teeth-are-actually-visible smile. You know, the one I paid lots of money to countless orthodontists and dentists for? Yeah - that smile.
Bitch cracks the door open by exactly zero point five inches. [Seriously - I think she used a caliper to measure it].
Sassy: Hi! We just wanted to come in and browse. [Having said this, me, Bernie, and Ben sort of lean forward, assuming the door would be opened wide and we would enter the store.....]
[Still leaning forward, we are now paralyzed by Bitch's response. We look like three Olympic skiers, frozen in stunned silence at the starting gate of the ski jump.]
Sassy: [Smile now downgraded to the 15 megawatt, 8-teeth-showing one] Huh?
Bitch: Fuck off.
Ok. Maybe that isn't what she said. Perhaps it was, "I fart in your general direction." Then again, having conferred with my fellow victims after the fact, it appears that, while I heard her say, "Fuck off", what she actually said was....
Bitch: We aren't that kind of store. We cater to personal shopping experiences. We select items for the individual. You don't just come in and look around. I would take you through the store and show you items that may be of interest to you and you would come in and I would guide you through......
And blah, blah, blah. Seriously - doesn't all of that sound like "Fuck off" to you guys?
Sassy: [Smile now downgraded to 1 kilowatt, only-the-bottoms-of-my-incisors-are-showing a/k/a sneer] Um. What? Do we need like an appointment or something?
Bitch: Well.....[and, still clutching the door close to her chest, she appears to assess the three of us]... Yes.
It now dawns on me that Ben and Bernie, standing behind me, are still frozen in the leaning forward skier stance. I can sense that Ben is somewhat perplexed, somewhat relieved, and somewhat worried: He is perplexed by Bitch's attitude and explanation. He is relieved that it looks like he won't have to stand around in a chick's clothing store while Bernie and me ooh and ahh over stupid blouses. But, he is worried that I am about to go off on Bitch.
Of course, it wasn't me he had to worry about....
Out of the corner of my eye, I notice that Bernie has straightened up. Her shoulders are back. I think her hands are on her hips now. Bernie's head is tilted slightly to the right. And she is doing that thing where she raises her eyebrows, blinks once (slowly), and then looks at Bitch from her head to her toes and then back up to her head again. I can't tell from my peripheral view, but my guess is, Bernie ain't smiling at all.
I do some quick math:
Ok. It's about 3 in the afternoon and by way of liquor I've only had 2 vodka cocktails and 1 rum runner. Yep - I'm way behind on my alcohol intake. That's not a good sign. Bernie has had 1 Corona with a lime. Either way you slice it, that's probably not good either. So - adding booze content to combined body mass multiplied by size of Sassy's liver, divided by bitchy attitude quotient of store clerk, subtract Ben's mild demeanor, carry the 6, and.......Ut oh. This could be a freaking blood bath.
In the interest of sleeping in my own bed that night (as opposed to in a holding cell cot with a transvestite named Cynthia), I am compelled to respond as follows:
Sassy: Oh. Ok then. Thanks!
I am delighted to report that the three of us slowly walk away. No blood shed. No frantic 911 calls. Bitch is actually able to lock the door back up and return to the safety of the store and Spot, the poodle. She will never know how lucky she was. [Do I sound threatening with my quasi-gangsta talk? No? Damn.]
Any way, there you have it - yet another establishment on my "list" - i.e., my list of places I will never go back to because the customer service sucks. So, I hereby welcome The World of Jimmy Star to Sassy's "list". All the greeter (and I've met mentally challenged, Wal-Mart greeters with more sense and courtesy) had to do was act polite like and maybe I would have whipped out the Gold Card. Oh well. Too bad, so sad. [By the way, readers, if you want the complete "list" of places I'm boycotting, just email me and I will gladly share!]
And yet, questions remain:
1. What the hell is a "personal" shopping experience? I mean, how is it different from any other shopping experience. I mean, do some people have "out of body" shopping experiences? Am I missing out on that whole trip?
2. How is Bitch going to select items that may be of interest to me? She doesn't even know me, for cripes' sake. And let me tell you - I certainly don't need some Bitch dressed in a wife-beater with crappy hand-painted "graffiti" on it to guide me through my shopping "experience"!
3. How do you do any business when you turn away potential customers? I mean, she didn't even offer me a card so I could make the so-called appointment as required. Weird, don't you think? Maybe I want to try out the whole "personal" shopping thing...
4. Why did she really turn us away? Was it my "tan"? Was it Ben's "I'm not driving a Ferrari" attitude? Did she think Bernie might kick Spot, the poodle, to the curb if it so much as looked at her cross-eyed? Really, what was the problem? [Ed. note: Bernie would never drop kick a small dog. Drop kicking a Bitch, however....well, that's a completely different event]. The point is...she shouldn't have judged a book (or a colored person, for that matter) by its cover....I gots money, dammit!
5. Where the &*@!*&@! does Bitch get off copping a 'tude like that when she works in a 2-bit store tucked away in the far corner of a cheesy strip mall located in the sad end of town? WhateverohwellIamoverit.
[Ok. That was a bit much. I feel a rant coming on.....Let me get back on track here....]
6. Most important of all: Do the knights who say "Ni" wear boxers or briefs?
Anyway, my point is - where has Decent Customer Service gone? I want it back. I am sick and tired of being rung up by snotty sales people who act like they are doing me a favor by showing up to their minimum wage jobs. Yeah. I said it. And that's all I have to say. [Actually, I just ran out of scotch so.....gotta go!]
Service Seeking Sassy
P.S. I miss Monty Python!