By Gerry Moran
Hi, my name is Gerry and I’m a Sales-aholic! I am addicted to sales. Can’t get enough of them. It’s an illness really otherwise known as Sales Fever. Up go the red sale signs, down goes my head and I’m off, like a greyhound out of the trap, hot in pursuit of those half-price jackets, suits, shirts and socks. Yes, even socks.
Never look a gift horse in the mouth, that’s my motto, even it is something for your foot. I love the sales. We pay top dollar all year round for everything from a needle to an anchor so it’s a bit of a thrill (am I easily pleased or what?) to get something for half-nothing. Or half price. And isn’t it gas how a jacket that you wouldn’t look at in December appears in a whole new light in January thanks to that hypnotic 50% off sale sign. As for that Reduced to Clear sign – that leaves me salivating in the aisles.
Now, for some inexplicable reason that jacket looks interesting, promising even. Hey, it might even go with the trousers you haven’t worn in donkey’s years or that shirt you were thinking of throwing out. But didn’t. And aren’t you glad now? And what the hell if it isn’t a perfect fit sure you couldn’t leave it there. Not at that price anyway. And besides there’s a bit of a stretch in it and who knows maybe you might lose a bit of weight when you go on that diet you’ve been threatening to go on since 2013.
Bargain Hunter Supreme. That’s me when it comes to the January Sales. I can sniff out a bargain at a mile distance. Maybe two. Maybe even three, depending on the discount. It’s in the genes, I reckon. Has to be. Once upon a time man set off in the bitter cold of winter to hunt for food to feed his offspring shivering and huddled together back in the cave. In the frost and snow he trudged, hunting down a mammoth or wild boar to put some food on the table. Many, many millennia later man sets off in the nippy January air to hunt down a wooly jumper, less 50% of course, not to put food on the table (we’re trying to take food off our tables now) but to fatten up his thread-bare wardrobe. Not much has changed, it seems.
Okay so modern man doesn‘t head out with a sharpened spear but with a slim piece of plastic i.e. a credit card, a far more lethal weapon if you ask me. Yes, sir, when it comes to ‘hunting’, be it for discounted wooly jumpers or hairy mammoths, man is still crazy after all these tens of thousands of years.
And isn’t it a dreadful illness all the same, this Sales Fever. The World Health Organisation should issue a warning really. I mean we all go to bed sane and sensible people on Saint Stephen’s night but wake up crazed, possessed and gunning for bargains the very next morning. Overnight we metamorphose into fearless, focused, bargain-hunting maniacs (well I do) And no one or nothing dare get in our way.
Worse still there’s no cure apart from staying at home, putting your feet up and watching the soccer or horse-racing or big movie on the telly. And sure where’s the fun in that? None at all and you simply end up with a pot-belly (and a fatter wallet, of course).
And wouldn’t you think that our parents would have prepared us better for this Sales Fever? I mean they warn us about dressing sensibly and minding ourselves when we go out in the world. They do their best to protect us from measles, mumps, chicken-pox, whooping cough and scarlet fever but they never, ever warn us about Sales Fever. A sad indictment, I’m afraid, of our parents.
In the meantime I am going to gather my offspring around me soon and I am going to give them the following, unadulterated low-down on sales: “Unless a particular garment has 50% or more off – don’t touch it. Oh, and if any of you come upon a jacket or shirt or even a pair of socks that are reduced even more – buy them. For me!”
Finally, Customer: Do you take anything off for cash? Sales assistant: Sir, this is a shop, not a strip-tease joint.