Discounting Pride

10 Nov

It’s a paradox that I’ve yet to come to terms with. The people who I am secretly jealous of, but at the same time utterly mortified by.


Let me explain.


I went out to eat with my friends. I ordered a salad (very original) and she fish with creamed spinach.


I got my salad; it had no taste.


They took their merry time bringing my friend’s creamed spinach, and when they did; it was cold. My friend then proceeded to send the creamed spinach back, and then asked for a drink on the house for her troubles. And when they granted her requested, and she then realized she didn’t like anything on the drink menu, asked for a free dessert instead.


She got what she wanted. Good for her.


My salad wilted.


I wish I had big mouth that I could open up, demand, have no problem asking for things that aren’t coming to me.


I’m jealous of the audacity, the real chutzpah of it.


At the same time, so embarrassed for my friend. It’s so degrading asking for discounts and freebies. Be a lady. But then again, she gets what she wants and nobody looks at her any less, and I’m the one left with a lousy overpriced salad.


Both my brother-in-laws possess this trait of having no busha.


Any time they go shopping they ask for a discount, whether there is an advertised sale or not. One of them reasons that in a department store associates are authorized to give a certain amount discount, it’s worth a try to get it.


My other brother-in-law actually went into a suit store and told the salesperson he had a hundred dollars exactly, what did he have for him. The salesperson responded nothing, and when my brother-in-law turned to leave, the salesperson called out “Wait!” He scurried to the back and found  a gorgeous suit for him.


Then while he was waiting on line to pay, he saw someone he knew exchanging a tie. The store had just finished a sale where if you purchased a suit, you got a free tie. This man had bought a suit, gotten the free tie, his wife didn’t like the tie, so he came back to get a different one. My brother-in-law seeing this piped up that he had come for this sale. The salesperson informed him that the sale was over. My brother in law then said “I came in from Lakewood for this sale.” The salesperson sighed, and gestured to the tie section, indicating that my brother-in-law can have his pick of a free tie.


So my brother-in-law got a $200 suit for a hundred and a free tie to boot.


I wish I could do that, but you should have seen my face when he told me the story. My mouth was agape, hands covering my eyes, cheeks burning, with embarrassment for him. He was proud as a peacock.


Both my sisters are mortified by their husband’s antics, and when they get into the “metziah” modes, they walk away pretending not to know them. But they get to reap the benefits, and preserve their pride; have their cake and eat it too.


I guess I just need to find meself a husband like that.


Posted by on November 10, 2008 in Uncategorized


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5 responses to “Discounting Pride

  1. frumpunk

    November 10, 2008 at 9:45 pm

    I’ve put in my time at big box retail so I know how it all works. (Circuit City paid for my year in Israel.)

    To put it simply, if you make a fuss, you can usually get what you want, as the last thing the manager wants is a scene, and if you make one, the employee will get reprimanded no matter how big of a jackass you were (so he’s essentially bullied by both the customer and corporate). So your BIL is getting his way, but he’s just perpetuating the cheap Jew stereotype for the salesperson. And the secret of retail is that if you treat the salesguy well, he’ll usually take care of you if you have a special request (extending the sale for you or whatever.)

    As for a resturant, all I can say is, don’t annoy the people who make your food. The movie ‘Waiting’ is a good example of this kind of thing (if a little over the top).

  2. Princess Lea

    November 10, 2008 at 10:30 pm

    I would be very leery of sending things back; a friend of mine’s family is in the restaurant business, and, well, you don’t want to know what can end up in your “free” dessert. Not pretty.
    I am a firm believer that as Jews, we must present a dignified front, and if coughing up more dough means not behaving like a stereotype, then so be it.
    No offense on your brother-in-laws.

  3. Mikeinmidwood

    November 11, 2008 at 6:21 am

    If what I got was absolutely what I didnt orderfine it gets sent back but if its just a little off like I said I want two slices of bread to go with and it didnt come I wouldnt make a scene.

  4. The Jewish Side

    November 13, 2008 at 6:19 am

    I know exactly what you mean, I’m just like you. I always just let things go, and never try to get things that aren’t coming to me. But then it’s interesting, cause people realize this, so then they look out for me, and I end up getting whatever it is, without having to ask for it.

    Supposedly my face is very readable, so even when I try to hold in thoughts, and I don’t express them, and I focus on convincing myself that it’s all ok, and I don’t need whatever it is, the person reads my face and gives it to me, and makes sure everything is okay.

    Frum Punk: you know circut city is declaring bankruptcy and closing down all their locations.

  5. citizen of brooklyn north

    November 16, 2008 at 7:07 pm

    It may sound like you are missing out on good freebies, but don’t admire this trait, as there is nothing wonderful about making an art of shnorring. believe me, when your friend or brother-in-law leave the store, no clerk is turning to another and saying “THAT is a wonderful person who is thoughtful and kind and I want to emulate”. Be thankful if they don’t remember you next time.


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