The madness continues at work. I think I was contagious and I spread the lurve cause half of the department are feeling the joy that was mine, otherwise known as 'the flu'. Which is fine; at least they know I was genuinely poorly. Unfortunately, I also managed to spread the lurve to my Viking, who is not a happy bunny. I continue to hack and splutter, but as the bit of old English wisdom goes 'it's better out than in'.

Stock levels are dropping faster than girls' knickers next to a photocopier at an office party. Most of my sales patter now includes an apology and advice to go to Boots, Superdrug or Savers to find that most important of purchases. It was such an important purchase that it had to be left until 4.25, knowing that the shops shut at 4.30, today. And no, I'm not prepared to wrap that gift when the shop shut 8 minutes ago.

I'm working tomorrow and I'm dreading it. I start at 8.30 and will only leave the store once the stock has been prepared for the first day of sale on the 27th (which I'm also working). All the good gift sets are gone, leaving the hideously expensive - I have an Agent Provocateur gift set priced over £100, or the hideous - Colleen X for £19.99, the later being very expensive bathroom freshener. All the gift sets need to be re-priced and then set out ready for the sale after Boxing Day. I didn't have to worry about it last year because I was only a temp, now I'm properly employed I do have to worry about it. I'm not sure how we're going to do that and sell fragrance to the Last Minuters. I personally would like to hide away in the stockroom and not come down until it's all over.

Yesterday, I realised I needed a break when I was getting ready to tell a woman to 'fuck right off', when I told her for the third time that the boxes of fragrance in front of her was all we had and those were the only lines the fragrance house did. She was adamant that the perfume her daughter had smelt differently, was like that box, but without the '2'. It's generally not a good idea, when one is flat broke, to call a customer to their face a stupid fuckwit for coming out without the name of the fragrance and who makes it.

The city does not seem so busy as it has in previous years. I know for a fact that we have not taken the money we did last year. I'm not the only one tightening my belt, interest rates, banks going bust, energy and food bills going up faster than fireworks, all are conspiring against the retailers' Christmas. Debenhams has been on sale pretty much since December 1st, and it's difficult for us, an independent retailer, to compete with their discounts.

I'm not sure it's a bad thing to be honest. People spend such silly amounts and a winter celebration isn't worth indebting yourself. I haven't got all the presents I would have liked for my friends and family, but they will get a little something. Christmas Day will be Boy and me chillin and cooking dinner together. Me hitting a bottle of naughtiness (hopefully I'll remember eating Christmas dinner this year), us playing Halo 3, Oblivion, watching Dr Who, snoozing on the couch with the cat. In the afternoon we'll visit Gee and her family, eat and drink more, snooze on her couch. I'm really looking forward to it.


  1. I so do not envy you - I 'popped' into town to collect my turkey yesterday and it was insanity. I daren't think what it'll be like today or the 27th!

    Have a lovely christmas and enjoy your bottle of naughtiness and snooze on the couch - I think you'll have earned it! have fun!

  2. Ah, retail... Oh how I miss the experience and customer's infinite wisdom.

    Grit your teeth hon, only 24 hours of complete pandemonium to go.

    See you soon & much love.

  3. Someone must've spread the lurve round my way too, (when I wasn't looking, I hasten to add), as I've just gone down with the same old lurgy again...(Shook one lot off about three or four weeks ago, now I'm back with the sniffles, coughing, congested chest, sweating etc all over again)..

    Either the man flu is mutating faster these days or my resistance has dropped (like everything else in my old age!)...

    Ah well...good excuse for hot toddies...

    Have a good Christmas (yes I know I said that in my last comment, but dammit can't an old man get repetitive if he wants) and go back to the grindstone refreshed!

  4. NM ~ yes, it was madness, I've survived - just. Thanks for your good wishes, I will certainly do my best. Hope you enjoy your vodka and crisps.

    ing ~ oh, I bet you see the even sillier side of MOPs now.

    cogidubnus ~ bad luck getting the lurgy this close to Christmas. Bet you have a housefull to contend with as well. Hmm...hot toddies. I like mine with rum. Yum.


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