a tale in being too poor to buy the perfume but beating the system anyway
*my mom coined the name princess wang for my actual favorite perfume, Vera Wang's Princess...but come on, princess wang is too good to pass up!
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I know they recognize me. I can sense it as their shifty sale eyes dart over to me the minute I set my foot on the shiny linoleum floor. I try a different route than the one I took yesterday; I head straight to the left, away from the pretty counters with a plethora of over-priced cosmetics and pretend I'm looking at the sweaters that are even more overpriced than the lipstick. I am good for at least one mintue--maybe they think I'll actually buy something today. I pretend I'm interested in the heather-gray turtleneck but actually I'm just confused as to what woman could actually feel sexy in this thing. Why does the women section in Macy's assume women have absolutely no fashion sense?
The sweater gig is up. I feel another pair of sale eyes on me, beckoning me over to them so I quickly step around the floor-length mirror and head back into desirable territory. All the scents hit me at once and it pricks the inside of my nose--it's nosebleed season and I'm probably going to get a nosebleed. Great. That's just what I need--to be the girl that milks free samples like they are a fattened cow (I love burgers, sorry) AND simultaneously bleeds out of her nostrils. Ugh. I would even hate me if I worked here.
A distraction comes in the form of an oddly still prepubescent swagalicious popstar in cardboard form--Justin Bieber is casting me a weirdly smoldering gaze and I don't even have time to consider why he has a woman's fragrance. My phone is out and I'm snapping a picture of him. Maybe they'll just think I'm a rabid fangirl who needs to take pictures of cut-outs of little boys. Oh gosh. I hope they don't call the police because I'm twenty-two and I'm pretty sure he's not even eighteen and I don't actually want the picture, it's just for a distraction!
It worked. The manicured man stopped glaring at me and he's currently waiting on a mom and her daughter who is throwing a fit about Taylor Swift's perfume being sold out. WHY DO ALL THESE POPSTARS HAVE FRAGRANCES?! When will Lil Wayne put out a fragrance and when can I buy it? Alas, I digress.
I'm free to step closer to my target--I see its periwinkle shimmer casting a glow on the glass case. I have about thirty seconds so I move quickly. My nostrils prickle...please don't start bleeding, I beg my nose. Please don't start bleeding. My palms sweat. I am now the nervous, familiar, maybe-she's-homeless, bloody nosed, sweaty girl they always see come in and then leave a minute later after I use the perfume sample I want. But at least I know who I am--I move quickly and swiftly and they've yet to say anything to me. I relish in this victory. My feet propel me forward, the case is nearly in my grasp. Manicured Man and Hissy Fit Girl are arguing. "I WANT WONDERSTRUCK DAMMIT! I NEED TO SMELL LIKE TAYLOR SWIFT!" I decide I'm never having kids, or at least not for a long time and also, they are never wearing perfume. But the bratty girl falls from my mind as I see Vera's bottle. My fingers grasp it and I give exactly three sprays--one on my neck and one on each wrist. I feel the beginnings of a nosebleed and I curse the seasonal changes. The perfume is on, I put the tester bottle down and I grin as I leave the store.
Until we meet again Macy's. Until we meet again.