Since the Holly-daze are swiftly approaching like a speeding train with no brakes - I will depart on to you some wisdom from a seasoned retail sales clerk"
THINGS TO REMEMBER WHILE SHOPPING THIS SEASON:
1. Shopping carts and Baby Strollers are NOT to be used as battering rams! This includes when a slow-moving person in front of you is hindering your path to Bath and Body Works. Trust me - the overpriced, olfactory-assaulting crap will be there when you arrive, no matter the time.
2. Do NOT call a store and demand that the sales associate run all over the store and look for items for you. This is called "SHOPPING" and you can now do it on the greatest invention ever: The World Wide Web.
3. However, should you decide to make a sales clerk run from one end of her store to the other to find that perfect pair of sparkly, peep toe pumps, make sure you know Aunt Sally's size for sure AND that you actually come pick them up!
4. DON'T eat mall food. They foodies are as disgruntled as the next retail clerk. And they will retaliate.
5. Don't wear Christmas sweaters with reindeer prancing across your bosoms. Just - DONT.
6. Don't try to make conversation with the poor girl with her name tag on upside down and hair pulled up in a sloppy bun away from her flushed cheeks. She WILL kill you by afixiating you with a plastic shopping bag - all the while singing "Jingle Bell Rock."
7. Buy Gift Certificates.
8. Do NOT take your kids shopping with you. Leave them at home with their father(s). Or at Day Care. Or a Kennel. Whatever - just DON'T bring them with you - unless they are on those inhumane little nylon leashes. No, wait - just leave 'em at home.
9. Make a list - get what's on the list and get out. This is not a drill. This will be the real thing. Be aware that you may lose a limb to get to the single TMX Elmo left in all of the United States.
10. And finally, while you are shopping - say nothing. Do not speak. Do not wish anyone "Happy Holidays" - pretend to be mute. It will make those of us who were stuck in retail drudgery for YEARS that much happier when we are forced to enter the dreaded "mall" and be pleasantly surprised by the massive quiet that descends.