Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Deb: I am not a thief and I won’t be treated as one. There is a new “solution” that some
Different shopping bags in store
retailers have embraced to stop theft in their stores. The store Over the Rainbow in Toronto takes your bags and puts them behind the counter until you are done shopping, causing you to have to wait in line until a salesperson is free so they can return your packages when you want to leave. This is particularly annoying if you’ve only been looking and have no purchase to wait in line for. I have hated it since the day they started it. It reeks of unfair and insulting.

I am not a thief and will NOT pay the price for those who are.

The chain store Aritzia has gone one step farther in their witch-hunt. They take your purse and lock it in a drawer. THEY TAKE YOUR PURSE AND LOCK IT IN A DRAWER.

First time they did this I was flabbergasted, but like a good polite little Canadian I took it on the chin and surrendered my purse. SURRENDERED MY PURSE even though I AM NOT A THIEF. A friend said to me recently that after being asked to surrender her purse she said, “Well, how do I know I can trust the employees with my purse? How do I know you are not going to steal from me?” Well, the young girl looked at her like she had been struck and said defiantly, “I don’t steal”, and my friend said, “Well, neither do I, and I will NEVER set foot in here again.”

The other week I had to go in there and get a gift certificate for my niece for Christmas. All I wanted was to go straight to the cash and receive said certificate, but I was informed that to do so, I would have to first SURRENDER MY PURSE. To which I replied that I would need my FUCKING PURSE to make said purchase. She got the manager who didn’t even have the decency to be red-faced about it. She said that taking my purse was a precaution in case I wanted to “look around”. I said that I did not and that I would never “look around” in this store again. I purchased my gift card, shaking and fuming and marched out, never to darken their doorstep again.

I understand that stores are having theft issues, but that is NOT my problem. I may have mentioned this before but I AM NOT A THEIF! Hire security, put those wiry ropes on merchandise or ask your staff to watch for theft instead of chitchatting.  YOU DO THE WORK. IT’S YOUR FUCKING STORE!

And one more thing ... get your hands off my purse!

P.S. I am now officially boycotting any and all stores that do this and I am taking my letter to the papers, minus the “fucks”. This has gone too far. We are far to accepting of these insults. I am mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore. Hmmmmmm–catchy phrase!

Barbara: Wow. I’m glad I never went into these stores this mad season. That is abominable! And shocking. And just plain wrong. I will join your boycott.

Satellite view of an eclipse
PS on a happier note: my younger daughter woke me up at 2:45am last night so we could go out on the front step and watch the lunar eclipse together. It was magical. The sky was completely clear with crisp points of starlight, and in the centre, the big, high moon, blushing red from solar shadow. First full-moon lunar eclipse on a Winter Solstice in over 300 years!!

We sat and stared for 10 minutes before we got too cold (and tired) and went back inside. There’s the goodness of this beautiful world. And no one tried to steal anything from us.


  1. My son and I were driving home around 5:30 pm last night and when we turned the corner and saw the moon we gasped! It was so low and large and bright, just teetering on the horizon! I ran into the house to get Colin and he marvelled too! Wow the moon, my best buddy. But I did not get up to see the eclipse. Sadly given Christmas week, I forgot. Glad you saw it Barb. What a gift!

  2. That is one of the best kinds of gifts. Just to look up at the moon and see it so bright is just so perfect. Expecially a couple days before Christmas,Plus you were with your family so that made it all that more special.

    Anyways back to what I was going to say,the stores have gone way to overbord. when it comes to people stealing things. I relize that some people steal things but does that make us all bad,I think not. When I went to California one time and when shopping into this store they had to actually check any bags you brought in and any bags that you brought out. Come on. I don't steal nor would I want too. I have better sence than and I have been taught better than it. Places that go to extream links like that make me feel like I am some kind of criminal. News flash I am not a criminal NOR some kind of an animal and I don't want to be treated like one. Deb when they ask to surrender your purse you just should have told them to KISS YOUR ASS. That's what I would have done well that and walked out. I would have never in a million years surrender my purse. I have too much stuff in there that I need and want. They would have just had to live with it.

  3. I'm outraged! I've never experienced this treatment anywhere I've shopped. I would have left without purchasing the gift card.

  4. I have not hear of this at all ever. I would never ever shop in a store that does this. It is going to the lowest common denominator and I don't want to give them that right. Wow. I am shocked.

  5. Unbelievable!! Outrageous!!! I will NEVER go into either of those stores again. Apologies to my daughter, who loves Aritzia, but that is just too much! - Anne

  6. I wouldn't shop in that store. No way.

    And Barb- so glad you got to see the eclipse! We had such heavy rain clouds we couldn't see a thing. I was very excited to check the internet for pics the next morning. I do believe there was something very special about that eclipse on the Solstice. I believe it marks a bright new beginning for us all.

  7. Out of solidarity, I'll never enter Aritzia either. Well, I'd be highly unlikely to anyway, but any place that treats its customers in such a contemptuous way deserves to find itself bankrupted by a lack of customers.

    Eclipse was at seven-thirty in the morning in my bit of the world. Beautiful, in a sparkling frosty sky.

  8. Solidarity against dealing to the lowest common denominator! Feeling the unity!

    And, Hollye, I too believe in the new beginning. It sure felt like that on Mon night. Soubriquet, sounds like we shared a similar eclipse experience (minus the time difference!)

  9. Deb, I feel ya. *grrrrr* The first time I ever encountered what you are describing was 14 years ago as a young Navy bride at the base exchange. It seems so surreal when something that offensive happens and the people involved can't understand why you don't just accept it as normal. (Hmmmm...porno scanners and molestation pat downs at airports? Everyone's a terrorist. Everyone's a thief. I'm sensing a theme.)

    I also feel sorry for the employees of so many of the stores in this area who have to have their purses searched - yes, you read that right SEARCHED - by a manager before being allowed to leave at the end of their shift. Note: Male employees' pockets and jackets are not searched -- just women's purses.

    I also feel sorry for the pubescent girls who go to schools that only allow clear backpacks/purses. Every boy in that school knows when a girl is on her period because he can see the infamous "pouch of supplies" in her clear bag. It's a humiliating violation of privacy. I have watched so many of my friends' daughters endure this shame with bowed heads and defeatedly slumped shoulders. And, yes, the girls do get teased. I understand the need for school security, but the clear backpack policy at, for example, the school walking distance from my house, hasn't stopped multiple weapons on school grounds violations in recent years.

  10. cannot tell you how it has done my heart good to hear all of the supportive outrage! Thanks one and all. But Rigel I have never heard of the clear backpacks. Geeze Louise what is the world coming to? At the mall today a couple was looking to check in their suitcase so they could shop, only to be told that since 9/11 there are no storage facilities which is reasonable. They got so upset with the woman who was giving them this news and I thought "what is the matter with people who shoot the messenger?"

  11. OMG. I clearly do not know my rights. I prefer using a backpack to using a regular handbag, and I am always asked to surrender it, and I always meekly do. NO MORE. I am going to demand my right to retain my bag, since I have far too much sense to be a thief.

  12. a) I would have been BEYOND horrified having to carry a clear bag/backpack in middle school.

    b) I have not yet encountered a store that does this awful thing, but when I do, I shall promptly march back out. It is just UTTERLY ABSURD.

    c) I am terribly sad to have missed the eclipse. I don't sleep most nights, and that night I happened to have a migraine so went to bed early... and actually managed to sleep... but missed the historic moment. *sigh*

    Just in case I haven't said this lately, I SO enjoy reading this blog. :)

  13. Rayna I agree, we must stand up for ourselves! We are all too willing to just do as we are told. At least I am. Kassy the migraine is just so awful. I am a sufferer too. Just look at it this way-the eclipse gave you the gift of sleep. You didn't need to see it. xo

  14. College students are subjected to this A LOT--other than some seriously high traffic touristy places I've been, that is the only place I've seen it, but I'm with you... in fact on campus, where the college students are forced to subject themselves to this humiliation, I walk on in with my back-pack... (but only if I have something that I can only get there--last case was my husband's stethoscope--only so many places sell them and the campus book store has the best variety)

  15. I've never been asked to leave my purse or bags with store staff, but if I ever am, I will just leave the store immediately.
    Many years ago I was followed around a store by a store detective who kept her eagle eye on me as if I looked shifty. I was very insulted.
    I don't blame you for being pissed off. Some store policies are really stupid. I "get" that theft is a serious problem, but still, thieves must be such a small number in comparison to honest shoppers. Right? So why alienate your honest customers? It doesn't make sense and isn't good business as far as I can see.
    Shop with your feet, as they say ... and march right out the door. Glad to see so many of your readers are aware of that method.


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