I went to Trader Joe's last night to pick out a few small Christmas gifts for my family. While waiting in line to check out, I overheard the clerk talking with her current customer about the evils of Starbucks. Apparently, Starbucks is buying out Coffee People, which is a great blow to fans of independent businesses. She and the customer went on and on about what a tragedy it was.
When it was my turn, the first thing the checker said to me was that she liked my shirt. It was more than just a casual compliment - I could tell she was really being sincere. Before she could ask, I decided to tell her where I got it, just to see what her reaction was.
So I told her I bought it at Costco. She kind of did a double-take and then started talking about how it looked vintage and there's this one store where you can buy vintage clothes and books by the pound and how people buy books there and then resell them for a profit. I think she was trying to change the subject. And I felt wicked for having bought a shirt at an Establishment Store. You don't admit to sins like that when you're at Trader Joe's. And maybe I should be a more militant consumer, but honestly, the only store my principles forbid me from shopping at is Wal*Mart.
So it may have been a faux pas, but at least it was intentional.