Pardon Me Madam

608-00783775  I pride myself in having good etiquette since being a New Englander it flows through me like plasma, or lava, as an ex of mine used to say.

And my naivete knows no bounds whenever the ill mannered and I meet, which alas, can’t be avoided. After being on the planet for so long, I wonder, how am I still so shocked when it happens.

I went to a sample sale another model invited me to. I’m in the market for a new dress so I thought, who knows, maybe I’ll find something. It looked like the poor man’s Lisa Perry, a designer I admire though feel her smocks are meant for the very young. But every once in a while I’ll see something in her window that catches my eye. Her signature on most of her clothes are circles…either on the fabric or cut-outs brandishing skin say on the hips or arms.. Camille said I dreamt this, but I’m pretty sure I’m right. Anyway, this was a Lisa Perry wannabe, but we won’t hold that against her.

There I am at 11 in the morning my friend nowhere in sight realizing I had just walked into quite a scene. Women as far as the eye could see rummaging through racks and bins like it was a quiz show. I expected Bob Barker to come strolling in miked with a shopping cart full of belts.

I hesitated at the door. Do I actually want to partake in this fashion hysteria? Then, wouldn’t you know, my mother appeared. “Whaddya so highfalutin Susannah you can’t go through a little bin?”

“Alright, alright…keep you shroud on.”

I stayed on the perimeter figuring it was safer, when a rather tall women grabbed a dress right out of my hand.

“Pardon me madam, I was looking at that,” I said, a bit stunned.

“Oh yeah? Too bad!”

“Excuse me?”

Omigod. My Connecticut and I were beside ourselves. Then my mother said, “What, now you’re tellin me I raised a wimp?”

I went right over and grabbed it right back, not caring she was the size of Magic Johnson.

“I’m buying that,” she snapped, sporting balls beneath her skirt the size of mangoes.

“Oh no you’re not, not unless I don’t want it. How dare you behave this way. I’m having none of it, do you hear me?”

Yes, I became a tad unhinged. Should have had breakfast before I left.

Then a woman who worked there came over. “Is there a problem?”

“Yes, ” snapped Magic, “this lady stole that dress right from under me.”

“I did not. She took it from me.” I realized I was engaged in something so beneath me especially since I wasn’t even all that crazy about the dress.”

“Now don’t fight, please,” the sales person said. images-1 “I’ll be right back.”

In two minutes she was back with a dozen of that same dress.

Was she kidding? I had visions of seeing it all over town on all shapes and sizes.

Like I’d be getting my nails done and the manicurist and the waxer would both have it on along with the owner and three other customers as well as the dry cleaner, landlady and Polly upstairs.

The rude woman and I both looked at each other. “No thanks, we said in unison.”

I handed the dress to the sales girl and me and Magic, along with her balls, shared a cab to Bloomingdales.

It was my idea.

Grace (and economics) ruled.



About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Thanks.
This entry was posted in Fashion, humor, New York City, Uncategorized, Women and men, writing and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Pardon Me Madam

  1. micklively says:

    Oh Susannh, that’s almost like sleeping with the enemy! Halving the cab fare and your carbon footprint is laudable but we can’t have you issuing tacit approval of avarice and poor etiquette.


  2. skinnyuz2b says:

    You handled yourself well, Susannah. I can’t imagine having someone take a piece of clothing out of my hands. On the other hand, the fashions upstate aren’t as fashionable.


  3. I love your writing. Could you check out mine? Its called Hostages and Hostages: Revision #1 on my blog
    It would be much appreciated! ☺


  4. katecrimmins says:

    You may have a new shopping buddy. She could run interference for you at a real sample sale. (I am confused though. Doesn’t sample imply a one of a kind?) Where I live there is no such thing as one of a kind. Last week I saw one of my sweaters on an 80 year old woman. I put it in my donation bag!


    • Not at this sale. They had all kinds of duplicates. Yeah, it’s happened to me. One year Banana Republic had this great cotton khaki dress for 40 bucks. It was great…well…it became a uniform. You saw it everywhere, and believe me. many of these bodies gave it a very bad name. I’m just sayin.


  5. Oh how funny! I love it. I needed to read some of your words today. I have missed reading and conversing daily. I forgot how yckk.. I can be while working. I think I would have fit in with the rudeness of this event…. Hope you are well. Think of you daily.


  6. Something about the image of a woman with balls the size of mangoes fighting over a dress…:) I’ve really never come across blatant rudeness like that, so I don’t know how I would react. If I didn’t care, I’d probably think it was funny someone could be that terrible, but if I cared or was in a bad mood, I think I’d stand up to them like you did.


    • Of course it was funny…later. Women can be very ruthless and petty…I’ve been guilty many times over the latter and not quick enough for the former. Now Camille, and my mother…they’re another story. They both could have tutored on the subject.


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