I like to think that I am a fairly wise shopper. My kids are TOUGH on their clothes. Isaac in particular will wear an item until it is so worn that a good stiff breeze renders him stark naked on the street, wondering what happened to his favorite shirt or PJs. Generally, before it gets bad enough that people start offering them coins and antibiotics on the street, I like to hit some of the local discount stores and restock their clothing stash. You know these stores that take in "irregulars" from the larger department stores? Say what you will, but I am NOT willing to pay $20 for a Spider Man t-shirt when I know for a fact that it will age the equivalent of 12 years after 1 night in my home. Those stores are usually my best friend.
Jesse and I hit a few this weekend and walked out with total pay dirt in the form of little boys PJs and shirts. As we were leaving the store, the alarm indicating the presence of a security tag went off. We waited expectantly to be approached by a sales clerk or the manager, who happened to be standing right there. No one said anything so we moved through the security bars again. Alarm went off again. We waited. No one seemed remotely interested in making sure that we were not stealing anything so we proceeded to leave the store, setting off the alarm a third and final time. Outside we poked through our purchases, concentrating on the higher priced items, but did not find a security tag. We assumed a cell phone or some other benign object was setting off the alarm.
At home I again dug through our items, searching for a pair of baby girl PJs I purchased for $6. Can't beat $6 eh? And there, mocking me mercilessly, was the rogue security tag that kept setting off the alarm. We never dreamed that a pair of $6 baby jammies would have a security tag so we did not bother to look. I MIGHT not have been so upset IF I had not been through this exact same experience several weeks before. That time I left the store with a pair of running shoes and got home only to discover the stupid tag was still attached. I had to drive all the way back to the store, not at all close to my house, with the receipt and ask them to remove it. I was less than thrilled.
There I was, standing in my house with a $6 pair of baby jammies, irritated as anything, thinking there is NO WAY I am driving all the way back out there for a pair of $6 baby jammies.
Did I mention this was a $6 item?? WHY are we marking $6 items with security tags?????
My irritation with this repeat lack of security tag removal, the fact that I planned for Anna to wear those jammies that very night and my general outrage at the apparently inept staff of this store motivated me to grab the nearest steak knife and start hacking at the security tag.
Can you see where this is going?
In my haste and annoyance, I grabbed a long, thin knife with a particularly springy blade. A knife that had, incidentally, not been through a recent trip in the dish washer.
Now feel free to laugh because it IS pretty funny, but please also have a teeny tiny bit of sympathy for the fact that this very flexible knife bounced off of the tag and firmly embedded itself in my left thumb. OH DEAR GOD THE PAIN. The knife hit a solid object which I can only conclude, given that it did not go clear through my thumb to the kitchen counter, was my bone. You must also allow Jesse some time to gloat as he was standing right next time me murmuring helpful things such as, "Honey I don't think you are going to be able to get that off." "Honey you are going to hurt yourself." "Cherith, be careful." "Cherith I don't think that is a good idea."
You get the idea.
There you have it, I stabbed myself in the thumb while attempting to remove a security tag from a $6 pair of baby jammies. What sort of award do you think I can/should get for this?
The appendage is quite swollen and painful. I have decided to give it 3 days to return to an acceptable size before I even consider seeking medical treatment. If the worst should happen and it has to be amputated, don't worry because I can have one of my toes grafted onto my hand, thereby replacing my thumb AND securing a nice discount on all future pedicures.
Liz and I have decided to start an anti anti-theft security tags blog. At this point they seem about as effective at preventing shop lifting as car alarms are at preventing car theft and break-ins.
I have not yet decided what to do with the offending $6 baby jammies. I will keep you updated.
My hand hurts like hell, particularly after typing this post. Anna spent the better part of the day patting the splint on my thumb and saying, "Owie. Owie. Mama Owie." Since laundry, dishes and most other housekeeping chores are currently out of the question and since today was the first day of school meaning that I spent the better part of the day typing with a very painful hand, Anna and I spent the evening laying on the floor flipping through a Hanna Andersson catalogue and commenting on how all the babies are night night. Anna very clearly now says, "Night night baby, baby night night." She is almost cute enough to render one oblivious to blinding, throbbing pain. Almost.