Did a Gucci bag do all that?
By NIKKI RAMOS
I’m a Marshall’s girl. Always have been. My mom taught me at a young age to “never pay full price” and it stuck, so when I started lusting over a Gucci belt online it almost gave me an ulcer. I decided I was going YOLO and to go for it or at least try it on.
What better time to do this but my trip to Waikiki, where you can find every luxury store imaginable almost beachfront and the sales tax is low! I gave myself a pep talk and got an Uber to the nearest Gucci store.
There I was, in Birkenstocks, ripped jeans and a shirt that says “Shake Your Palm Palms” across the chest, reminding myself not to ask where their sale rack is, and “don’t touch anything with your jam hands.” Looking like I fit in wasn’t going to happen, but I played it cool, asking where I can find belts.
I was sent upstairs to meet Aaron while being stared at the whole time as if the President himself was shopping there and the Secret Service was protecting him from middle class bargain shoppers. I tried on the belt and knew I wanted it, so Aaron went to the back to grab me a brand new one while the one other person in there (an employee) and I stared at each other.
I started to look around since I was waiting anyway, and made a game of it to see if I could dodge his stare. Nope, the Gucci employees are top-notch creepers and I quickly noticed they outnumbered the customers. Then I started doing a Rain Man, calculating their payroll budget, overhead and sales goals.
Aaron came back with my bill — there were no cash registers where they up-sell you or ask you to donate $1 to a hungry child. Instead of awkwardly looking at merchandise, I sat on a sofa to wait, and here came the check to sign and my belt. If you’re wondering if I sprung for the 15-cent Gucci shopping bag, the answer is “duh.”
As I left, I had extra pep in my step, confident in my decision of getting myself a quality piece. I’m not sure if it was all in my head, but that Gucci shopping bag does something to people.
I’ve never been greeted by so many strangers walking down the street than I was that day. I went into a clothing store and the salespeople wouldn’t leave me alone because they thought I would be dropping some cash. So, now I was faced with people being nicer, fake conversations, empty compliments, etc., etc.
Is this how rich people feel, questioning the authenticity of interactions? Could a single Gucci bag be creating all of this? Do material things create self-confidence? All of this buzzed through my head as I slipped the Gucci bag into my unassuming polyurethane tote, going back to regular me. I like regular me.