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Retail Hell

How I Sold My Soul to the Store Confessions of a Tortured Sales Associate

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.


“I think you left these behind,” I said, handing them to her. This happens all the time when women try to return bags they’ve used. Tampons, lipstick, coins, Tic Tacs, and condoms are the top treasures found.
‘Greasy’ let out a sigh, as if I were the problem. “I was just trying my things in it. I really don’t see what the problem is here. It’s none of your business what I keep in my handbag.”

It is when my commission is at stake! I’m not your Designer Handbag Rental Service! My name is not!

Enter Freeman Hall, an aspiring screenwriter who sets out to realize his Hollywood dream, but instead plunges into the seventh circle of Retail Hell when the rent comes due, selling animal-hide Hobos and overpriced clutches to Lookie-Loos and Picky Bitches—but always with a sunshiny smile.

Freeman toils in the handbag (that’s handbag, NOT purse) department of the Big Fancy department store, where he sees, hears, smells (and unfortunately, feels) it all! Here, he provides a true—and truly shocking—account of life from the other side of the handbag display. From early-morning RA-RA RALLIES to the craziest crazy-lady customers, Freeman’s horrific and hilarious workday tales redefine Juicy Couture.

As Freeman begins to plots his escape, he realizes that despite the Big Fancy’s lax return policy, for him, there really may be no returns . . . no exchanges . . . no way out.

Publishers Weekly Review

Sep 07, 2009 – For Hall, retail was destiny, for he came from a family of retail workers, including his great-grandfather, who owned a furniture-and-appliance store in his hometown of Reno, Nev. But Hall, as he explains, had a different dream: he wanted to be a screenwriter. He didn't give up those aspirations, despite having retail jobs during his growing-up years. When he moved to California to get closer to the film industry, he looked for a job that could help him pay the bills and look fabulous at the same time. He landed a job at a department store he calls “The Big Fancy,” an upscale emporium known for its customer service. Those who've worked on the front lines of the service industry will relate to Hall's bitter memoir (and recognize the retailer as Nordstrom, where he spent 15 years as a handbag salesman). Hall's memoir chronicles wacky training exercises, sleep-inducing staff meetings and, of course, the customers. Every nutty client becomes a character, from foul-mouthed Lorraine, aka Shoposaurus Carnivoarus, to more generic Serpents and Bloodsuckers. Screenplaylike renderings of Hall's dreams pop up throughout the book, as do rants about co-workers, customers' endless capacity for lying in the service of returning obviously used items and more. Hall's voice is sharp and sometimes funny, not unlike a retail-centric Perez Hilton—but the book will leave readers wondering why Hall stayed in retail for decades if he hated it so much.
Retail Hell
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  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Biographies & Memoirs
  • Published: Aug 18, 2009
  • Publisher: F+W Media
  • Seller: F+W Media, Inc.
  • Print Length: 272 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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