Last Sunday, Michele & I ventured to JC Penny's for some girl time & shopping. I was looking for slippers, and she had a gift card to burn. To my disappointment, there were no cute slippers, but we did have fun perusing the sale racks. We looked at shirts, jeans, jewelry, purses, selected a few things & made our way to the changing rooms.
After trying on our various outfits, we exited the changing rooms, put down the clothes we didn't plan to purchase, and I walked with Michele to return the jewelry and purse she had opted not to buy. We then decided to stop at the little Sephora section of this particular Penny's. We browsed for a bit, paid for our products and headed out the door. Or so we thought.
When I was opening the door to go outside, a gruff male voice interrupted our conversation and laughter: "Don't walk out that door." A big arm grabbed the handle I was attempting to push open and pulled it shut. I turned, surprised, and was greeted by a stern male face. "You ladies need to come with me."
We were utterly confused and responded with variations of, "What? Us?" It was abruptly confirmed: YES, US. As we walked like guilty little school girls behind this hulking figure, he was radioing other personnel: "I need a female at the LP Office."
As we were making our way back to the mysterious "LP Office," I asked timidly, "Um, could you explain what this is all about?" The only response I received was a surly, "When we get to the office."
At this point, Michele and I are exchanging confused glances and my heart is pounding a million miles a minute. Did I forget to change out of something in the changing room? Did something fall in my coat pocket?
We entered the Loss Prevention Office and were directed to sit on two chairs in the corner. As soon as we sat down, Mr. Silent Brooding turned into Captain Interrogation. The conversation/ cross-examination ran like this:
Him: "You ladies want to tell me why you're here?"
Us: *blank stares*
Him: "Don't sit there and look confused when you know what this is about! I'm the one who determines if you get to walk out of here, or if I call the Canton Police and have them escort you."
Me: "Sir, we look confused because we are confused."
Him: "Did you girls look at purses and jewelry?"
Michele: "Yes, we both bought one pair of earrings, and I looked at a purse, but I didn't buy it."
Him: "Do you want to tell me what you did with the jewelry you didn't buy?"
Michele: *confused look* "I put it back where I got it from."
Him: "No you didn't." *Pulls out a purse and begins removing price tags from purse.*
Us: *blank stare*
Him: "What are these?"
Michele: "I have no idea. That's not the purse I looked at."
Him: "Well, where is all this jewelry?"
Michele: "Sir, I have no clue. I put the jewelry back on the table - I have no clue what that is."
At this point, we explained to the guy that we didn't steal any jewelry. We detailed exactly where Michele had replaced the jewelry and bag, and the guy made her walk back to that spot and show him. While they were gone, I asked the lady who had come in with us if she wanted to search me. She responded, "Nope, I'm just here to witness," as carefree as if I had asked her if she wanted a piece of bubble gum.
When Michele and the guy returned, he was sheepish and still keeping up his stern act in an attempt to cover his embarrassment.
Him: "Well, you know, I saw what I thought I saw, and I'm doing my job. I'm sorry, but I thought I saw what I thought I saw. Do you have any questions for me?"
Me: "Yes, what is your name?"
He told me his name, I thanked him and we left. As soon as we were out of the store, we basically exploded with all the things we wished we had said and done.
After telling our husbands what had happened, they went back and had a little chat with the guy and the store manager, and apparently we should be receiving written apologies in the mail any day. I mean, I know the guy was doing his job; he probably thought we were sneaky teenagers, but he still didn't have to be such a jerk about it.
Here is a pictorial reenactment of what he wished had happened...
Stealing the goods.
Yeah right, sucka!
Happy New Year.