And despite having known me for years , they still keep an eye on me. the guy at the cash register has even gone as far as to check my bags of purchases that i came in with (which leads to this side story: i came from the city after buying Jeffrey Campbell boots, and a box of tampons, i hand them the bag as i go in. when i come back to the register with my purchases, one of my shoes is out, and the guy is holding the box of tampons saying “you could have bought this here, you know!? we have it in that aisle” all happily. when i asked why he went through my bags and srsly my shoes he sai d”ohhh…uuuuhh, i just wanted to see what you bought, haha you know, whats new”)
So anyways, theyre keeping an eye on me, this neighborhood was mostly Polish and German, but now its gonna a larger hispanic population, but still ots of white kids stealing for fun. i cant help but notice that every time im in there there, is a white kid stealing very obviously, and they dont do anything.
so today , I ran out of hair dye, and while normally i would take a train almost an hour to a friendlier place, i needed that dye ASAP. so i braved up and went to this one. not a second after i step in im hounded with “HI DO YOU NEED HELP WITH ANYTHING ILL BE RIGHT HERE!” i have worked in retail long enough to know that this isnt a “helping hand” but a warning. “im here watching you so dont steal our cheap shit!”
so while im looking for dye and the man asked me for the third time ( mind you it only takes me 2-3 minutes to buy shit in a hair place) this white girl, perhaps 14-16 years old is stealing super long blonde hair extensions, and hair brushes. she’s rail thin, and has the plastic contents shoved into a super tight “PINK” tee. im baffled as they cannot see this. so on her way out, she drops her brush. the korean guy literally jumps over the counter to pick it up (it was an inch away from her hand) and does alot of this….bowing to her, and smiling, as she strolls the fuck out of the place.
when one of the girls who worked there says “she didnt pay for that” and i go on to say “she stole some extensions.” the girl is standing in the little park outside the store, pulling the 4 foot extensions out of her shirt and showing them to friends. the man doesnt do anything. he doesnt call the cops.he does chase her down and tackle her. he doesnt try to fight there. no. he stands there with his head tilted back and his mouth open.
So a few years back, i think i was perhaps 19 or 20; i went to Sephora with two friends. one was chinese american, and the other white (irish) american. our white friend enters the store and liked…disappears, while me and my chinese friend shop. i became annoyed quickly as i wasnt even left to look at anything for a second before someone jumped out from somewhere and took things out of my hand and offered to “bring it up to the register for me” because you know, i couldnt possible walk five feet and do that myself…like all the white shoppers are. lots of “do you need any help, im right here”. meanwhile, my Chinese friend cant get anyone to help her. so i told her to stand very close to me and just piggy back on their offers to “help.”
So i end up buying an eyeshadow. not because i even wanted that eyeshadow. but because i wanted to leave with something i paid for in the hopes that they wont think i came there to steal ( i used to be this way).
when we get to the park , our white firend who just went in wearing skinny jeans and a tank, unloads a SHITLOAD OF SHIT: a line of professional grade brushes, several different eyeshadow, perfumes, etc. she proudly tallied up the price on her cell calculator and it was all about $300 worth of stuff. my friend and i (who are friends to this day) were not only flabbergasted (we didnt know she would do this, and we felt weird) but disgusted.
she then went on to explain that she totally went there to steal, and totally was glad i wanted to check out the store, because she knew it would be easier if i was there because “they always jump on the first black” in stores.” and “as soon as you came in behind me, and i noticed everyone make a beeline for you, i just grabbed what i wanted”.
Suffice it to say, i never hung out with her again.
i do notice that now that im a bit older, and depending on how im dressed they dont bother me quite as much. but whenever im with a white friend from abroad, and we go shopping they always ask me “Cat, why are all these people asking you if you need help ALL THE TIME!?”.and one of my friends, a male thought it was a shop staffs way of “flirting” with me, because he just kept coming around,asking if he could be of assistance. meanwhile, all my friends of other races complain that they can never find help in stores when they need it .
i dont know a good way to end this, but yeah. i just wanted to put this out there.