*phone rings*

Susan: Wanna go shopping? I have to pick up some luggage.
M:Sure, sounds like fun.
S:I'll be over in fifteen minutes.

*90 minutes later, knock on the door*
S:Hi. Sorry I'm late.
M:No problem. I understand Susan Standard Time.
M:Nothing. Shall we be off?

*arrive downtown, drive wrong way in parking structure*
M:What are you doing?
M:Aren't you wondering why everyone's cussing you out?
M:Never mind. There's a parking spot there, it's going to be kind of difficult to park there, because the angle's wrong, but ...
S:Ooooh, look a spot right there!

*after executing 10-point turn and backing into parking space*
M:Y'know that essay I sent you about cats and computers that you liked? I wrote that. I found this really cool website that's helping me write better. I hope to .... Susan?

*notice Susan hasn't immediately exited the car, walk back*
S:Why do you walk so fast? I like to mosey along.
M:Mosey? You're not even out of the car yet!
S:Well, women have to collect themselves.
S:Never mind, let's go.

*walk towards main drag, notice an approximately 30 foot square area in an alley with sign that says "BUY THIS PROPERTY, CAN BUILD UP TO THREE STORIES!"
M:Who'd want to build 3 stories here?
S:Three stores? You can't fit even one store on something that size.
M:The sign says three stories, Susan.
S:You couldn't even fit three stores in three stories there! Who'd want to shop in an alley anyway?
M:I'm not sure.

*arrive at main drag*
S:Now, remember, I like to mosey, so don't walk so fast, you're tall, and I'm not.
M:Okay, I'll try to remember that. I just hate crowds, I like to get to where I'm going, get what I want, and get the hell out. Where's the luggage store, we'll mosey to it.

*notice Susan is looking up and down the street*
S:Shh. I'm thinking.
S:I need to remember the name of the store.
M:Oh, is it the only one that has the kind of luggage you need?
S:I don't really need luggage. More like a bag.
M:I've never seen you carry a handbag in your life! Oh, do you need a new fanny pack? Everyone sells those.
S (hoarse whisper):No, I need a "bag".
M:Why are you whisper....ohhhhhhhhhhhh. We're getting drugs. From someone at work. Greaaaaaaaaat.
S:It's okay, he's Jamaican.
M:Oooooooookay. You can't remember the name of the store?
S:Well, Patty said it was a luggage store downtown.
M:Hey, look, there's "Bags Plus" ... is that it?
S (looking more concerned):I'm not sure.
M:Well, what did Patty tell you?
S:Well, I think she said Bags Plus.
M:What's the problem then?
S:I can't remember the guy's name. I think it was Arnold or Arnie or something like that.
M:When did you last talk to Patty about this?
S:Right before I called you.
M:And you can't remember the name of the store, nor the guy's name? Tell you what, I'm gonna sit over there and have a smoke while you think about it.
S:NO! You have to stay with me. That's the whole reason I wanted you to go along.
M:I thought it was because you admired my taste in luggage.
M:Never mind. Why do I have to stay with you?
S:Hel-LO! I'm going to meet a strange man to buy some pot from him while he's at work.
M:Oh, so you need an accessory.
S:I told you I needed a bag.
M (sighs):So what are we going to do? There's another luggage store up the block.
S:I'm pretty sure it's Bags Plus. (walks to front of shop, peers in, walks back to me) It's an Asian lady in there.
M:So, ask her for Arnold, then.
S:I'm not sure that's his name. I'm just gonna walk in there and find a Jamaican man and tell him I'm Susan, come on.
M:Susan, that's not polite. What, are you gonna walk up to him and say, "Hi Jamaica Man, I'm Blonde White Woman, give me drugs?" What if there's more than one Jamaican in there?"
M:Look, Patty works at Nordstrom, right? Let's just walk up there and ask her the name of the store and the guy we're supposed to talk to, okay?
M:Okay, why don't we call her from that pay phone, then?
S:Well, her boss is there today.
S:She shouldn't be taking personal phone calls.
M:OKAY, let's walk up there and be customers then.
S:I can't afford to buy anything at Nordstrom!
M:(muttering) but you can afford pot?
M:Nothing, let's just go, if she's busy, I've got an idea.
S:Oh, no, not one of YOUR ideas.
M:Whose idea was it that got us to this point?
S:Mine. Okay, let's go, I've got an idea, this'll work.
M:What idea? Mine's better.
S:Just follow my lead.

*arrive at Nordstrom, notice Susan looking up and down the store*
M:Admiring the architecture? I adore Nordstrom, it's so beautiful. Where do we need to go?
S:Well, she works in the women's department.
M (feeling a bit like Job):Susan, all three floors ("hmmmm, three stories, didja notice?" "What?") have women's departments!
S:Well, she sells clothes.
M:Okay, let's just take a tour. Ooooh, look at that shirt!

*I buy shirt, pay 72 dollars for it*
M:At least we're real customers now.
M:Never mind. Look there's Patty!
S:Okay, now just pretend you're my husband.
S:Just look like you're irritated to be with me while I'm shopping for clothes. We'll do that until she notices us and comes to help us.
M:Oh, well, playing that part shouldn't be too hard.

*15 minutes later*
M:Susan, this isn't working.
M:This isn't working. Haven't you noticed that Patty hasn't left the counter? She's swamped, and there's two other clerks stuck there, too. Let's just walk over there, act like we're customers, and then...
S:No wait, see that guy sitting over there by the counter? Those are "husband chairs" so guys can relax while their wives are shopping. Go sit over there, and I'll move over to that area and looky-loo. Maybe she hasn't seen us.
M:Okay, whatever.

*15 minutes later, I've lost sight of Susan, so I walk up to the counter*
M:Excuse me, miss?
Patty (looking scared, making "eye motions" which suggest her boss is standing right next to her):Yes, may I help you?
M:I'm sorry to bother you when you're so obviously busy, but when we were in here earlier today, you suggested a shop for my wife Susan to visit. My wife has forgotten the name of it, but she didn't want to bother you while busy. Do you mind refreshing our memories?
P:Oh, not at all, it's called "Bags Plus".
M:Thank you so much. Oh, is there anyone we should ask for?
P:Yes, ask for Arnold, he'll take care of you.
M:Thank you so much (glance at nametag) Patty, you're very helpful, I appreciate it.
P:No problem. Thank you! Have a nice day.
M:(beaming at Patty's boss) You, too.

*10 minutes spent locating Susan later*
M:Let's go.
S:Yeah, Patty's never going to see me.
M:I have the information.
M:Let's just go okay? ... oooooh, look at that tie!

*60 dollar purchase later*
S:How much have you spent in here?
M:130 dollars, more or less. All to help you get your drugs.
S:How are we gonna do that? I don't know where to go.
M:I do.
M:I talked to Patty about it.
S:You did? She's going to kill me.
M:Trust me, she won't. I made her look good in front of her boss.
S:How'd you do that?
M:Just an idea I had. Let's go, okay, before I spend more money I don't have.
S:All right, all right. Where do we go?
M:Bags Plus. We ask for a gentleman named Arnold.
S (triumphantly): SEE? I told you.
M:Not with confidence. Let's go.
S:Well, that Asian lady confused me.
M:Susan, you were confused the day you were born.
M:Never mind. Here's the store, you want me to go in with you?
S:WAIT. That Asian lady.
M:What about her?
S:Well, silly, she's obviously not Arnold.
M:But we can walk in and ask for him with confidence now ... we can even tell her Patty at Nordstrom said to ask and cause more business between the two stores. Conspicuous consumption at its finest!
S:You do it, I'm going to sit here and have a smoke.
M:Fine, fine.

*enters store*
M:Excuse me, miss? May I speak to Arnold? Patty at Nordstrom said I should ask for him.
Salesclerk:I'm sorry. Arnold's off today. He'll be back on Monday.