Posts tagged with “nonsens novels”

That thing of the Pharisee

Sunday, 22 February, 2015

I should have known it could not end well.

Picture this, nuh. I’m walking through a shopping centre, minding my own business. I reckon I have become rather good in dodging these sales people that spring a surprise on you and try to sell stuff to you that both you and them know you neither need nor want. I’m always embarrassed to try a new biscuit or whatever and to then nót buy it. So I do the thing of the Pharisee in the biblical parable of old and pass the other way.

So how this girl got it right, I do not know. But the next thing I know, this very beautiful girl had me by the arm and steered (more like pulling, I’d say) me to her open kiosk in the middle of the broad passage of the shopping centre.

At first I was totally flabbergasted by the strange sounds the girl made. After a while I started catching up on the accent. She was actually speaking a good English, it is only the accent that took me a while to realise it is actually English.

“I show you someteeng?” she explained. With the third attempt I understood. Strange, how quickly your ear can adjust. She then grabbed me by the hand.

“You see da lines on yourrrr nail? Everrrrybody has them.”

No sh*t, Sherlock, huh? I thought she was going to read the lines on my hand and tell me my fortune. Not so. The next thing she grabs this funny little brush and starts polishing / massaging / brushing my nail. When she was done, I had this very shiny thumb nail. She pulled my hand to her and pressed it between her breasts.

“Now notting weel take thees off,” she said with conviction. Well, I would hope so.

The next moment she holds something under my nose. Obviously she was now going to give me chloroform and abduct me and have her way with me. So I took a deep breath.

“Thees ees ceutex, ok?” she explained.

She grabbed my thumb again – well, actually for the duration of this whole exercised she never once let go of her grip on my arm. She was making sure I do not escape before she concluded her sales pitch. Another sniff from the cutex and my sinuses were as clear as it had not been in months. She attacked my shiny thumb nail with the cutex, but the shine remains.

Only now did I understand what she meant with “notting weel take thees off.” It was the shine that would remain, not her …… aaah, never mind.

OK, I understand now. And your point is? I wondered, but did not dare to ask.

“You know what happens thees month?”

Aha, trick question. I ran a few possibilities through my memory. School already started, holiday has come and gone, no rugby match to speak of, maybe an eclipse of the sun, I tried.

“No, eet ees Valentines day.”

O, shucks, good thing you remind me. I totally forgot. Oh, but hang on, it is also my wife’s birthday, I remember.

“That is good,” she swooned. She sells just the stuff that my wife would want. “And your daughter,” said she. “Do you have a daughterrrr?”

I hate it when people ask these personal questions. I always suspect a phishing scam in progress. Yet, I find myself mumbling a feeble “yes”.

“And how old ees shee?”

That is none of your business, I thought, but nevertheless find myself parting with this information too.

“Now see, because you arrrr my firrrst customerrr forrr today, I make you a verrrry special deal.”

So there is the lesson. One should not go shopping this early. It is the early worm that gets caught. But now just because (a) I am her first customer, and (b) she is very nice, she will now offer me two of these nail sets for the price of one. However, by now I got wind of the price she had in mind. And for that price I could fit a new tyre on my car.

“Arrrr you frrrrom Cape Town?” she asked.

Aha, an opportunity to change the subject and escape from this sales pitch routine. Yes I and, and where are you from?

“I’m frrrrom Isrrrrael,” she said.

But she does not let go of me. I meekly explain that the price she is talking about is what a tyre would cost me, and that both our washing machine and the tumble dryer have reached the end of their life cycles.

“Oh, but come looook, I show you someteeng.” She dragged me around her computer so that I could see the screen – and the menacing price of the product. Ke-tiek-etiek-etiek, she attacked the keyboard, and wala! The price suddenly halved. How cool is that, huh?

“How doo youu like that?”

Well, it’s still the price of half a tyre, but if that is what it would cost to allow me to escape from her grip with dignity, it suddenly became palatable.

Ok, so I left home to buy chlorine for the pool. I return home with a little thingy that does something to ladies’ nails, and no chlorine.

The lady did mention something about a lifelong warranty on some of the products, but that part was told when she once again had my hand firmly between her breasts, so was not quite sure what she was referring to.

But on the bright side, I had something for my wife for her birthday.

“Oh, you got bamboozled by that girl in the shopping centre,” my wife exclaimed when she opened it.

Now I ask you, what on earth gave her that idea.…