Wednesday, April 21, 2010


So, busy week. But I saw such an interesting creature yesterday while making a bank run for the salon, that I couldn’t help but share.

Now, let me preface this by saying that our salon is in a very nice area of town. BMW’s and Audi’s are commonplace, as is an $18 burger and high end Doggie Salons. I, obviously, am WAY out of my league in this area…but I’m there to mix it up.

Anyway, I’m sitting in line at the bank and see a lovely old school Jaguar pull up. The car was an attention getter and was in great shape, so I waited to see who, or rather what got out of the car. What a treat for me!

Let me tell you that the gentleman that got our of the car was probably in his mid- to late-50’s and dressed in head to toe Versace. Jeans, shirt(s) and shoes. You could tell from the obnoxious labels. He got out the tiniest little rat dog and then turned and looked at me.

Ya’ll. Wow. Really.

Imagine this if you will. Picture what it might look like if this man:

Mickey Rourke

Had a 50 year old love child with this woman:


It was truly horrific. Know when to say when buddy.

I also saw a woman, in this same little shopping area, that looked even more out of place than the Crazy Face Lift Man of 2010. We’ll call her Bettysue. She pulled up in front of a store in her Chevy Celebrity circa 1984 and got out in overalls and curlers in her hair. Now, in my hometown – not a problem. In this little area, it was like showing up naked to a state dinner.

I just wanted to go over and say “you’re not from around here are you?”

More posts tomorrow night, just had to share this mental image with you before I went to bed. Sweet dreams  my little reader monkey’s!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Bad Dad – No BBQ

So, this isn’t store or salon related, but I was driving today, saw this and had to share with all of you.

I was sitting at a stop light and saw something that i think was pretty common across the Jo, and much of the Plains states this week. A man, standing proudly in front of his grill with tongs in one hand and beer in the other. Now, due to my finely tuned nose (i have strep throat people not a broken sniffer!) I could detect the aromatic smoke that can only come from properly seared cow flesh.

Sounds yummy right?

Even more it sounds normal!

So I’m sure you’re wondering – so why in the hell are you telling us this Clerk K. Because what else I saw was so horribly, horribly wrong I could only share it with you.

So, here is what our daddy looked like, except switch out one of those spatulas for a handy bottle of bud light. Got a good image? Good.

Now, you may be asking: “Clerk K, why are you assuming that this fine purveyor of BBQ is a father? I see no hints from the lovely picture?”

Nice pick up, and that is where everything went wrong. In fact, the more i think about it the dad looked more like this:

Yeah. That’s better. It was that guy. With a beer and tongs, in front of the BBQ.

I’m pretty sure when his wife said: “Honey, can you watch the kids and take care of dinner? I’m just wiped.” She didn’t quite have this in mind.

Speaking of babies, congrats to Hallmark Girl and her husband on the coming addition to their family this fall. They are going to be great parents.

Side note, have you noticed that most of my friends sound like errant Super Heroes? Like Hallmark Girl – Able to write thank you notes within four hours, scrapbooks with ease and defender of all well appointed gifts! It’s the whole “secret identity” thing.

I’ve been sick so things have fallen off a bit. I go back to the store tomorrow. Have a great weekend.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Salon Training 101 or How to Answer Phones

So, several of you have asked for some posts on the salon. Most of the time, it pales in comparison to the c-store, but I had the “privilege” of attending a seminar on “Maximizing your Front Desk Results” last Monday. I think it should be renamed “what a waste of my time.”

For two hours, i sat with other salon coordinators learning the intricacies of answering phones at a salon. In this riveting class, I learned the following things.

  1. The merits of a professional manicure vs.. one that you do at home. I mean really, clients can SO tell if you paint your own nails. How ghetto.
  2. Should you say “good morning/afternoon” or “thank you for calling.” Getting these things right can truly make or break your salon. Now seriously, have you ever called to make an appointment and decided you WERE NOT letting these people cut your hair if they didn’t said Good Morning instead of Thank you for calling? If you have, you should go to another blog because you SOOOO won’t find this blog funny.
  3. How we should look like we were ripped from the pages of the latest magazines to reinforce that the stylist know what they are doing. Quite frankly, if I'm paying $50+ for a hair cut, I'm more concerned about the stylist than what the phone girl is wearing. I’d also like to point out that they never mentioned what magazine that you needed to look like you walked out of. I think that leaves things open for interpretation.

And finally the scripts. Because, god forbid, you answer the phone and not know precisely what to say.

What if they want to know prices?!? (ummm, you tell them)

What if they don’t like their haircut?!? (how about apologize and offer to get the stylist on the line so we can determine how to make this right)

Free thought was NOT encouraged. The answer to everything…use a SCRIPT.

So we did a script writing exercise, with each group given a challenge that we had to address. My group got “monthly special” – and no not THAT monthly special you dumb-dumbs. I was paired up with a salon owner who employed a staff of 15 and another coordinator who was completely overwhelmed.

As we began to discuss, the salon owner reinforced to us that “she had this down…i write these scripts for our Salon.” So after some writing, here is the exchange:

SALON OWNER: I have the script, are you guys ready?

ME: Lay it on me.

SALON OWNER: “Thank you for calling Moron Salon, this is Owner…would you like to hear about our 45 minute massage for $45 special?” Great huh?

ME: And if I was to say “yes, tell me about your special” isn’t your answer just “it’s a 45 minutes massage for $45” Why are you asking me if I want to hear more when you just told me all there is.

SALON OWNER: silence…still silent…slow blink. Okay, well what about “Would you like to hear about our 15% off all product special?”

ME: All products are 15% off?

SALON OWNER: ummmmm…what would you say if you don’t like these?

ME: “Good morning Fantastic Salon, this is Coordinator K, would you like to hear some ways to pamper the mother’s in your life?”

SALON OWNER: Wow…that’s really open-ended…you’re amazing.

This woman runs a salon that probably has $100,000/month in services and can’t figure out how to answer the phones! For all that is holy, save me from stupid people.

My boss’ response to the class – “I thought that class had SUCH good information.”

Why me.

Friday, April 2, 2010

The Progression of Poor

Now, many of you know the side effects of a recession. You cut back on things. Fewer trips out on the town, you start cooking at home, you shop at resale shops, you cancel (heaven forbid!) the HBO. But when you’re really deep into the depths of getting by, those things seem like a treat.

In my case, “cutting back” has gone well beyond these small things. I’ve had to cancel my cable. I only have gas service in the winter. I don’t have trash service. Things that we take for granted have gone by the wayside. A treat anymore is buying the “good milk” at the grocery store or a $1 redbox rental. But with these changes you also are exposed to a new side of things that you didn’t know before.

Here is how those interesting observations come about:

I don’t have a bank account any longer. Some things didn’t shake out and I got overdrawn. i couldn’t cover the overdraft charges, and what do you know…voila! No account. So, instead of taking checks to the bank, I now do most of my banking at Wal-Mart and Check Into Cash.

I could be bitter. I could dwell on the fact that the charges I pay to these places would fill my tank with gas. Or pay for trash pick-up, or give me the treat of an actual manicure. That would just piss me off and what fun is that. So, I look at the humor these things could bring me.

Let’s take today for example. I ran to Check Into Cash to, duh, cash my paycheck. The guy in front of me was borrowing money so he would have cash for his daughters visit this weekend. Then the baby mama drama began. Evidently they were doing the “great baby swap” at the check cashing place and it was going horribly wrong. From what I could pick up, the baby mama boyfriend (versus the baby daddy) didn’t know that they were meeting “in person” for the exchange and he was calling every 30 seconds to see where baby mama was. She (baby mama) was shaking like a dog crapping razor blades afraid that she was going to get “in trouble.” Baby Daddy on the other hand was going to “whoop his ass.”

All the while, the baby is in the car. Alone. During a rain storm. Baby Mama finally answered the phone and I could hear her boyfriend screaming that he was gonna get even for this and she was lucky he didn’t call the police (i know, i was confused too…keep up.)

Please remember – they are in line to get money while this is playing out. Would you give these people money? I made the sad mistake of asking:

If you don’t usually pass off your child face-to-face, how exactly do you do this? Do you just leave her hanging out somewhere…like now?

This got me a REALLY ugly look and a “mind your own damn business bitch.” (When you run that little statement through your mind, think of the guys from Deliverance for an accent)

So…I then go tonight to get a money order for rent (remember, no bank account…no checks) at Wal-Mart. So there I was, the only English speaking person in line, waiting for my turn with Dorthea when a woman walked through the front door that was a vision.

them are some eyebrows

Now, those eyebrows look like commas gone wild. You can’t see it in the picture, but the have a big dot at inside making them look like a freakin’ connect the dots picture head on. The black circle you see under her eyes looked like a reverse “smoky eye” where instead of lining the eye and smudging the liner out, she lined about a half inch under the eye and smudged in. Combine that with the lip liner, the overly bedazzled sweat jacket and her friend with the Irene Cara Flash Dance outfit and you haven’t seen a more happening 70 year old.

Would I have seen this at the bank? Hell no.

You keep your direct deposit and online banking. I’ll hang with this freak-show for now!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Clerk K’s Split Personality

So, as i indicated in my last post, my one night at week at the c-store has expanded back to four a five a week. You know that cold weather rule that won’t let them turn off your heat/electricity in the winter months? Well, it has expired and with that, my ability to make it on a monthly basis without going all pioneer bitch has caused me to amp up the old c-store hours. Ahhh, the things we do for hot and cold running water…but i digress.

Working these two VERY different jobs has me developing a bit of a split personality. Let me explain.

I’d like to start by saying I have no misconceptions about my appearance. I’m not an attractive woman. I’m 37. I know this. I have a mirror. Now, I don’t scare small children, but I’m never going to be mistaken for the “hot chick”.

But at the c-store? At the c-store I am the bomb.

I bathe (see Backwoods).

I have all my own teeth (take your pick).

My eyebrows are in their original location and are actually made of hair (oh, I'll tell you about the new manager later).

I. Am. A. Catch.

Even in the polyester polos that are oh, so popular in the world of convenience.

At the salon? Well at the salon I’m constantly struggling for just okay. This is a place where people come to feel and become beautiful…and I am the face of that business.


Be fashion forward they say…I have always struggled to reach fashion neutral much less forward. That goal is for younger, smaller, hotter girls. My fashion rules have always been this:

  1. Make sure all your parts are covered. Nobody wants to see your “muffin top” or mistake you for a plumber.
  2. You shouldn’t wear white pants unless you wear a 12 or smaller. Really people, this should be a law.
  3. Only wear the shirts with the stains on the chest in the yard or on the weekend.
  4. If you’re wearing sandals, paint your damn toes and get a pedicure. Nobody wants to see your corn chip pinky toe or crusty heels. Stripper feet are only for strippers. And finally…
  5. If all else fails, wear black.

These don’t apply in the salon. Now, I’m scrambling to make something fashionable out of my wardrobe and struggling because on my salary I can’t afford to go buy pieces to juju it up, makeup and assorted polishes that go with the outfits (see above where I’m now working from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. to pay the utilities).

For the first time in my life I have fashion anxiety and i HATE it. Also, the difference in the two makes me feel like I'm hooking for loose change…or I'm some weird crime fighter…

By day, she is a mild mannered salon coordinator answering phones and sweeping floors. But by night, she dons the polo of power and becomes Clerk K – bringer of normalcy and swishers.

I don’t know how Wonder Woman did it. Sheesh.