Anyone who has worked a good length of time in retail can relate to this topic. This is perhaps our greatest frustration outside of thieves. A parent who allows their child to terrorize the store. We in retail toil long and hard to keep our stores neat and clean and all it takes is a single child on a rampage to ruin our day.
It starts at the front door as the five year old boy and his mother come in a grab a shopping cart. It’s about now when the “little guy” pulls the wad of chewing gum from his mouth and throws it on the carpeted floor. The Mother, noticing this, says in her sickly sweet calm voice, “Now Peter, don’t do that”. Then she continues on.
Peter then makes a mad dash to the toy section and proceeds to start ripping action figures from their packaging. Mom is now on the other side of the store contemplating the latest shade of Cover Girl nail polish. By now, Peter is bored with the Action Figures and starts spraying silly string, meanwhile Mom has moved on to mascara.
Twenty minutes pass, by which time play-balls can be seen bouncing down the aisles and several bottles of bubbles have been opened but only a few have spilled on the shelves and carpet. Mom has finally decided we don’t carry a blush dark enough for her liking and perhaps it suddenly dawned on her that the world is full of Perverts and she hasn’t seen her Tot in 30 minutes… but I doubt it.
She turns the corner just in time to witness little Pete take a wiffle ball bat and start beating the bejeezus out of the wind-chime rack. After the sound of 87 wind-chimes simultaneously falling to the floor dies out, Mom’s sickly sweet calm voice can again be heard… “Now Peter, don’t do that”. Lil Pete pays her no attention and grabs a Snicker bar from the shelf, rips it open and takes a healthy bite. The sickly sweet voice says “No Peter, put that back, you’ve already had candy today. Mommy has to pick up her medicine”. Peter throws the half eaten candy bar on the floor.
While mom is at the Pharmacy counter stocking up on her Valium and Zanax, Petey has discovered the neat little machine that dispenses coupons. He pulls one out, throws it on the floor and another magically pops out! Lil Pete thinks this is so very kewl and for the next five minutes these coupons are flying around like confetti!
As Mom’s monthly fix is now secured, she turns from the counter, wades through Pete’s pile of crumpled coupons and that sickly sweet calm voice rings out… “Come â€˜on Peter, time to go!” leaving behind in their wake, utter destruction and mayhem.