By Trina Machacek
More times than I can count I want to start a column with, “Picture this!” But that line is used very often and I don’t want to be cliché. So try as I might I come up with some other remarkably catchy lines. But today I just have to say, “Picture this!”
A recent conversation I had with a friend reminded me of this…I am at a jewelry counter but I was not there to buy jewelry even though there might have been just the tiniest drop of drool on the left side of my mouth when I looked through the “looking glass” at a pair of platinum and diamond earrings that would have lit my face up like nobody’s business! But no, I wasn’t there to buy jewelry. I was there to buy a watch battery for my other half’s fancy watch that used a battery that is only available from a jeweler. Okay let’s make like a secondhand and sweep along. Okay I’ll stop, like a stop watch. Help! I can’t tell when it is time to tick-tock along!
Whew, made it out of that time warp! Okay I’m really done now! Well only time will tell if I am truly done… I asked for the battery by number, a 687-BFD I think, but don’t hold me to it. The gal knew exactly what I needed and turned around to get one from the safe. Yes it was a very exclusive battery. She turns back to me and asked to see my watch, apparently she was going to install the battery for me.
Since I knew the battery was not for my watch but for his, I thought this might be kinda fun to watch so I slid my watch off my wrist. It had one of those metal stretchy won’t catch your arm hair and pull them out by the roots band. She gave me a weird look. One of those looks like I was committing some sort of jewelry faux-pas. In my world a foo-pah!
So the gal gets out her little six inch by twelve inch padded piece of counter rug, smooths it with her hand like it is made of mink and not fake velvet. Takes my watch with her delicate little but heavily laden, borrowed from the store, diamond ring wearing hand and reaches for her gold tone and jewel encrusted eye loop. Sorry but I think I snickered a little at her show and what was to come next.
Next she reached under the counter and pulled out a dark purple bundle. It was tied with lighter purple ribbon that looked very well used. She untied the ribbon and unrolled the cloth to reveal an impressive line of tiny watch maker’s tools. These were much more than the tiny screwdrivers we used at home to pop off the back of watches and dig gunk out from around the edges. Yuck!
All tools gathered, laid out and in place she whined, “Well let’s just see what we can do for this watch shall we?” Sorry again but I am sure that this time I really did snicker. Her little boney fingers picked up the watch and turned it over showing a scratched up back side. She then put the eye loop up next to her eye squinting to hold it in place.
At this point I should’ve said the battery was not for my watch. I should’ve said it was for my husband’s watch. I should’ve, but I didn’t. She needed to learn a lesson, she needed to learn to talk to the customer, ask questions, be aware and not be condescending. She looks at the watch, turns it back and forth, up and down and says something like, “I don’t see how to get the back off. Is this an older model?” I couldn’t go on any more. I said to her, “The battery isn’t for this watch, it’s for my husband’s watch. This watch doesn’t use a battery.” Then things took a turn that even I couldn’t have seen coming…
Miss twenty something looks up at me and says, “Wow no battery! How does it keep running?” Really? I took it from her and started to WIND IT UP! I honestly don’t think she had ever seen a watch that you wind-up. She didn’t even know what I was doing until I showed her my old, wind-up every morning Timex from the Stone Age! The battery was $17.95, about the same I paid for my watch in the olden days. But the look on her face? Priceless.
See you next “time!” Sorry couldn’t help myself…
Trina lives in Eureka. Share with her at email@example.com