Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Bench me, I'm dreaming

You know those things you walk past in a store and, for lack of a better word, lust over?

And sometimes, when you're out with your kids and you need to pick up baby wipes (Or toilet paper. Or trash bags.), you convince yourself that you need to go to Target because they totally have the best price. And, as long as you're there, you might as well swing by that thing you've been eyeing because, hey, it might be on clearance. 

Well, that was me with this bench:


It's cute, right? 

I love the rag rug meets metallic top and the baaaarely finished legs. 

But, alas, it's $110. 

And I just can't do that. 

I mean, it's a bench. 

Do you know how many unnecessary dollar store knick-knacks I could buy with $110? hundred and nine!

(One hundred and nine pieces of junk that I absolutely do not need, but that's the way my brain works.)

However, I would totally pay...hmm, $23. 

What? No way!

Uh, yeah, way!

It was a "stars and planets and orbiting satellites aligned" deals, topped with me being one of "those ladies", to whom even the deeply discounted clearance sticker wasn't enough. 

Here's how it all went down:

It started innocently enough, almost exactly the same as the hypothetical situation above. We needed baby wipes. We get baby wipes from Target. 

So, we're meandering around Target, checking all the back end caps (because that's where they like to stash the clearance stuff) when, lo and behold, what do I spy?

My bench!

With a little red clearance sticker pasted to one leg!

Now, I have not seen this bench in while. Which makes me wonder, is it really $54.98 or could it be...even less?

So, Alice in one arm, bench in the other and trusty Grayson by my side, we hot-footed it to the nearest red-shirted employee. 

It went like this:

Me, breathless with excitement and from carrying a twenty pound baby and a twenty-five pound bench halfway around the store: Excuse me, could you check the price on this for me?

Very nice, very calm Target Lady: Of course! I'm happy to assist you and I don't think you seem crazy at all! 

Okay, she didn't say that last part, but she scanned the bench without even the faintest whiff of condemnation. 

Target Lady: $33

Me: (inside, having a Mary Katherine Gallagher moment) Yes! Alright! Target's number one! 

Me: (outside) Great! Thank you!

After that, Grayson helped me grab a cart (he's such a sensible boy) and we loaded up the bench (and a lamp that was also on clearance ($12, yes, please!), but more on that in a minute). 


While I was putting the bench in the cart I noticed that it was missing one of the protective feet:

I figured it could be replaced easily enough, but it meant the bench would be wobbly until it was fixed, which was kind of annoying. 

It was then that all those segments from the Today Show about store discounts came flooding back to me. " Ask for more off", they whispered... "You never know unless you ask..."

Now, this is outside my comfort zone, talking money with store employees. I am one of those people that hates returning things for perfectly legitimate reasons even when I have the receipt. Like the employees are going to judge me, "Ooh, she changed her mind and this reflects poorly on the rest of her life. And her shoes are ugly." 

I mean, in my head, that's what they're thinking. 

But, so help me, I was going to buy this bench! And I was going to pay even less than the clearance price! Or, at least, I was going to try...

I wheeled the cart (and the bench and the baby and the Grayson) up to the Customer Service desk and asked the man, very nicely: 

"Umm, this has some damage, it's missing a little footy thing (technical term)." 

Man, without missing a beat: Yeah, we'll take $10 off. That okay?

Me: (outside) Yeah, great, thank you! 

Me: (inside) Oh, yeah! Target number one! Alright! (see above)

Here it is, all settled in our house:

It's acting as our little shoe station right now. It's a good height for Grayson to hop on when it's time to put shoes on and the crate Joseph made is underneath to toss shoes inside when it's time to take them off. 

I think it's going to work out nicely. 

Oh, but I do have a question!

I mentioned that I also picked up this lamp:

Nate Berkus, $12, missing the little switch cover where you turn it on and off but I don't think that's too big a deal. 

My question is: what kind of shade do you pair with a lamp like this? It's obviously a statement lamp (I mean, it's gold!) and it's a little on the tall side, I feel, so I'm tempted to pair it with a really plain shade. But maybe that's wrong, maybe it needs a shade that stands up to its bold shape and color. I don't know. 

Also, my picture is terrible, here is a professional one: 

So, please, en"light"en me. 

Ha, yeah, see what I did there? 

Oh, goodness, someone help me...

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