Monday, June 3, 2013

Monday Musings: Why the Girls At Crossroads Need a Reality Check

Crossroads Trading Co.

On Saturday, I decided to sell some clothes. This past year I have been trying to weed out the things I am holding on to for no good reason and only keep items I love and wear regularly. So, I have been making semi-regular trips to the local Crossroads. Crossroads is a "buy-sell-consign" store. They purchase clothing from people and resell it. If you have something really nice you can also consign it, but how that works, I have no idea because they never seem to want to consign anything of mine. But, I am getting ahead of myself.

Anyway, it is always an uncomfortable experience. I bring in clothes that I like, and many that are still in excellent condition. I never bring things that are damaged, horribly out of style, or things that I think have passed their prime. When you get to Crossroads you sit on this little metal bench and wait to be called. There is the added social pressure of the fact that the staff is going through your stuff in front of the other people waiting to sell who are also conscious of what is getting bought and what it getting "passed" on. Generally, I have good luck. And, there is one girl who works there who always thanks me for coming in and is very pleasant. I did not get that girl yesterday. Instead I got a girl I had never seen there before, and, mother, did this chick have some attitude on her.

To set the scene, there was a 45 minute wait. A couple next to me had an enormous suitcase full of things, like jackets, with their tags on. (The girl, who was fully clad in spandex, said she had to sell them because her boyfriend only lets her wear really tight clothes. Um, come again?) Then there was a woman with two massive IKEA blue bags and a little boy and his mother with a pile of items they hadn't even bothered to fold. The suitcase was up first. The girl looking through their stuff just moved items from one compartment of the suitcase to another. They made six dollars. Then the IKEA bag was up. She had lots of nice things which the girl said were "out of season." I find that a little hard to believe regarding tee-shirts. Lastly, the little boy was up. His mother had already been chastised because she bought a coat directly from the suitcase lady on store premises. Apparently that is against the Crossroads code. However, the suitcase girl had come back in and offered to sell the kid's mom everything in her suitcase. The mother went outside as they had practically just threatened to call the cops on her for buying a jacket, leaving the little boy alone with me in the store. The girl looking through his stuff just picked things up and put them down and then said, "Um, yeah, so I pretty much had to pass. These are some really tough styles, and I think some of your items are out of season. Oh, yeah, and wear. Yeah, some are too worn. And is your mom ever coming back?" (Imagine all this in a valley girl accent.) His mom didn't return, and he had to haul his enormous bag of junk out to find her while to the two girls behind the counter snickered at him. And then I was up.

I can never understand why an old tee-shirt from Target is more sell-able than a silk Elie Tahari blouse, but apparently it is. And the way that they examine your clothes would make you think that your nice J.Crew button down was a carrier for leprosy, bird flu, and MRSA all at the same time. And you are suddenly shamed for thinking that a ruffle, or eyelet, or the color pink was ever cute. The girls doing the buying are all embracing the 90s grunge aesthetic, which I personally think limits their ability to stock a diverse selection of items. I made some cash, but I was also made to feel like I probably have bad taste, surely am delusional about what is cool, and am generally just a laughable human being. I am made to feel this way by three bitchy chicks who work at Crossroads. Now, there is nothing wrong with that job, but it is amazing that girls who look through people's old clothes in trash bags for a living can make so many people feel so bad about themselves.  That is all.

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