Do you want a super easy and cost-effective birth control? Well all you have to do is apply to work at a big box toy store. While some might think its fun to work with a bunch of toys, its not anything close to a playdate. The lunch room furniture was not made of lego and we didn’t have an endless supply of candy. It wasn’t all rainbows and unicorns all the time, thats for sure.
I was hired as a seasonal employee to work through Christmas. This is basically the worst time for any person who works in retail. The store hired lots of us to manage the insanity that is Christmas-shopping-parents. Since it was such a large group of new recruits, we didn’t have a lot of training. We had to rotate in each training exercise, so we didn’t get enough hands on experience. With very little training or confidence I was on the floor with huge lines full of impatient shoppers, who have been at the mall all day and still need to buy gifts for two other cousins and that one weird Uncle you have. It was a mad house in there.
Not only did I have to learn the POS system and all the information customers would ask about, I also had to learn a sales pitch for a warranty program they offered. Depending on how well you did with selling warranty, the bosses would then determine if they wanted to hire you full-time when peak was over. So, when I started working there that was something that I really wanted to do well on. I used to sell warranty when I worked at a tech store, so I thought I would be selling warranty for gaming systems, games, instruments, and other big items. Well… I thought wrong. This was a warranty on all toys. Every item in that store had some type of warranty. Every item except maybe candy. But because I didn’t work in the electronics section, I never really saw big ticket items at my till. I mean, how was I supposed to sell warranty on cheap ass toys? Like “Excuse me miss, do you wanna buy warranty on a fucking Barbie?” Because literally you can. Pretty much everyone turned me down. It was stupid AF to buy a warranty on a toy where its cheap enough just to replace it if necessary. I even cringed every time I saw that warranty window pop up on my computer. I felt bad for everyone I had to give a sales pitch to. Sorry for your 30 seconds that I wasted!
I tried to use the music that played in the store as a way to make the time go by. I started noticing that I was pretty familiar with all of the songs. It was a perfect playlist for me while wasting time at my register. Every shift I had, I noticed I was hearing a lot of the same songs. Like dang, I knew the radio was repetitive but not this repetitive. By the third shift, I shared my thoughts with a coworker who informed me that its the same playlist for a long long time. When December hit it was Christmas music all the time. I had never hated Christmas so much in my life before. But hey, at least I can recite all the words to every Christmas song in existence ever!
Ever since Frozen came out, Frozen toys are high in demand. Of course all the kids at my store lived for that fucking snowman. Disney put the Frozen characters on pretty much every item that the toy store sells. There is a Frozen version of anything and everything. Don’t even ask me how many times I’ve heard ‘Let it Go.’ We really need to let that go people!
Once we closed, kicked out our final customers and closed up the registers, we had to organize the aisles. Everyone in the store, regardless of their position had to stay until this process was finished. Now, it may sound easy to quickly organize the store with all those people. But it is actually a brutal process. Imagine a very loud, obnoxious child in a toy store. They are on a sugar high and are so excited to look at all the toys. What do you think they do to our lovely displays that we organize the night before? Of course, they destroy any type of organization that existed. They pick up toys, throw them down in random places, knock down a bunch of product, leave products in wrong sections and overall just make a huge ass mess. If you take into account the size of my store, which is a massive store, and the amount of work it is to pick up every single item in the store and align them on the shelves neatly, you can imagine that its pretty terrible.
Another gross thing about working at this particular toy store was the washrooms. The washrooms the staff used were the public washrooms in our store, which was open to anyone who walked in plus their
nasty kids. The washrooms were left so disgusting by the time the store closed where most of the time I just didn’t use theirs at all. This may be TMI, but like the sights I have seen were horrendous.
Bonus Story! I was cashing out this mom who was with her toddler daughter. I had a decent size line of people building up behind her. I’m scanning through a few of the small puzzles that the mom placed on the counter, just doing my normal routine. Then the final item of their purchase was this play grocery shop cart. The little girl was standing right in front of me, giving me a crazy death stare, with a tight grip on this cart. I needed to grab the item because the scanner wouldn’t reach all the way to the ground where the girl was. So I bent down to her, reached my hand out for the small plastic shopping cart, and then… had a young toddler scream in my face. Just like a chihuahua, she looked small and cute at first but once you made her mad she became evil. She hated that I tried to take this precious thing from her. I kept looking for help from the mother but literally she didn’t say anything until the daughter started to make a scene. She then dealt with her kid and passed me the cart to scan. I cashed them out and continued with the rest of my line. Kids, what a joy.
If you work at a toy store, good for you! You are a very strong person.
Follow me on Instagram: @jordancaroe
Watch me on Youtube: JordanCaroe