Have you ever been walking along in a mall, minding your own business, when all of the sudden out of the corner of your ear you hear this delightful “Sir, you sir, yes you? Can I talk with you for a moment?”. You turn around and to your delight [as a single male] it is a gorgeous young lady who appears to be next to a goofy little cart. The young lady tells you that your skin looks a little unhealthy and that perhaps you should consider buying some hand care products. You look down at your hands and are quickly reminded that the only reason you even bothered to trim your nails was because you had an interview today and it would look bad if you didn’t.
So, you sit there staring at the nice young lady, as you don’t want to offend her. It’s only ever so often that women approach you in the wild. So you figure “Hey, it’s not like people approach me every day, I’m probably not going to buy anything but I will put up with it anyway”. She gets a bit of lotion out from this very flashy looking cart with a few LED’s and tells you about the history of this lotion. You choose to mostly block it out and try desperately not to look at her cleavage, nodding and sounding interested in the product spiel she’s got going on. She continues her conversation and ask if you would like to try out this fancy finger waxing concoction that they have come up with. You having no presence of mind to be anywhere for the next hour or so figure “Why not, it’s not like I’ve got anywhere to be”. So you let her pull out this strange set of tools that could easily be mistaken for colon and she begins to rub it one one finger. Now, not having any sort of familiarity with pedicure like treatments, you are a bit suprised that your fingers can actually shine as she wipes off yet another layer of what was probably pretty worthless skin anyway. In fact, you’re so bemused by how much your finger is actually providing a reflection that you’re almost distracted enough not to notice the beautiful young lady who just brushed away the ugly.
That’s when the whole little charade ends, and the beautiful young lady stops being so beautiful and quickly becomes a soap selling shaman. She lets you know that for the incredibly low price of $79.99 you too could own this wonderful jar of god knows what and apply it to yourself every morning so that you don’t look like you just wondered out of a cave. She says this in a much kinder manner, making you feel ten times more macho than you actually are, almost giving you a mental boner over the amount of ego stroking as she tries to explain to you the possible reasons you could have for not taking care of your skin.
Than, as your mind slowly recoils from the ego stroking it just got, that price tag of 79.99 sets into your feeble mind. It wasn’t like you were going to buy the product she was hawking your direction anyway, but if you had at any point been swayed by that cleavage it was gone now. You don’t even blow 79.99 for gifts to loved ones, there is no way in hell that you’re going to be spending it on a product that has the distinct possibility of transforming you into a rose bush at the end of the week. That $80 dollars could easily translate into a years supply of head and shoulders and old spice body wash as well as a weeks rations of Ramen noodles and bus money. You don’t want to be rude, so you politely tell her that you simply can’t afford an 80$ bottle, but perhaps if you had the money you would.
What you are actually thinking:
That was your first mistake, you should have never let the Salesperson know that if you did have money you’d be willing to spend it. Now, you have a 20 spot in your pocket for emergencies when you might be dieing, or Subway just sends up a smell signal and crudely lures you into buying a delicious Chicken, Bacon, and Ranch sub on Italian Herbs and Cheese with some peppers. But who can be bothered to be distracted by sammichs at a time like this, you have some escaping to do. Sadly, the young girl in front of you looks disappointed that you aren’t willing to buy your top of the line product, and you know at this point that if you had ever had a ice cubes chance in hell of sleeping with her it had just vanished.
Then the bartering begins, she starts to reach into her cart and pull out other, smaller items that might better fit your budget trying to figure out how much you actually happen to be carrying. You don’t have the heart to tell her that the single most inexpensive item on her cart is more than 3 weeks worth of food for you. Again; however, that tiny monkey part of your brain that thinks there’s still a chance says “Go ahead, stick around, she’s cute, you’re being social!”. We all know that in truth, you’re being a sucker, and it’s probably written all over your brow.
It is at this point, she tries to appeal to your nonexistent sex life by asking if perhaps you would like to buy them for a girl friend. Internally a combination of sadness and laughter overwhelms your innards as you can only choke out “Oh no girlfriend I’m afraid”. She quickly chirps that perhaps you have a female friend, acquaintance, something with boobs and a vagina that may wish to partake in these wonderful soaps. Fear not though, you have been down this guilt trip before and you know how to avoid it’s traps, you simply state that “Oh, most of the girls I know are more the tomboy type”. This partial truth will hopefully save you the embarrassment of having to end this bartering dance in front of all the passers by who haven’t been caught in this soapy net. Sadly, she’s apparently heard this excuse before as she informs you that plenty of truckers have been known to buy the product to help keep their delicate trucker hands silky smooth. You in a fleeting effort try to back away from the table.
But you’ve set off the final switch in the salesperson brain, if she could cry in public she’d be doing it right now. She haggles with you offering to cut the price on one of her products just for you, great now you feel like shit for being so poor that even the haggled price is too high. She than offers to sale you parts of the product at a discount rate of only $10.00, and you in a tinge of guilt were almost ready to accept. You think to yourself at how sad you have sunk, as the girl has made such a brilliant effort to try and get you to buy this soap, that you almost owe it to her to buy SOMETHING. That’s when the memory of being able to eat this week fades back into your mind and you’re quickly reminded that while gorgeous and persuasive, the path to a non existent hell is paved with good intentions.
You quickly do what you were trying to do from the beginning and struggle free with half-hearted attempts to sound grateful as you back away slowly, hoping not to provoke an attack from what is probably part feline. She seems saddened that she couldn’t sale you anything, and says goodbye. It’s over, you’re free of the web and you now know that you are going to have to avoid this part of the mall like like the black death.
While this tale may not sound quite familiar to you, I’m sure you’ve heard it before. I’ve had the unique pleasure of running into this little group at not 1 but 2 locations in the United States and both times it’s been a tragic tale of how my poverty saved me from buying dead sea salt. In truth, I have no clue if their product is worth the $80.00 sales price, and if it was I suppose selling it at the mall is probably a good start.
For those who don’t know, It’s a group that sales Dead Sea soap and are primarily from Israel. I did a little research [Heard some things in a reddit thread, did a bit of google searching, and insider information] and can tell you that the folks manning the carts are pretty desperate to make a sale. Apparently they get kids from Israel and take them to the US and keep them here essentially on the basis that they sale this soap. It’s a job for them, and a way to get into the US on top of that. Of course if they fail to sale any of this soap they are fired, without a job, and now in a foreign country with no compatriots to speak of. To top this all off, apparently the supervisor for these places has some sway and gives them a place to live while they are here in a sort of townhouse complex. So the urge to perform is even higher with that little incentive working on them.
I can also tell you, that if they are actually annoying you [some reports have them putting their little dead sea salt on unwilling subjects and the like], than please report them to the Mall. They are a tenant just like any other, and if they cause the mall to lose business you can be assure that something is going on behind the scenes. If enough people complain, you can pretty much put money on the idea of them no longer holding a booth in the mall.
It’s really a tragic situation all round, but it does create a funny story for me to write. I hope you have enjoyed it as well, as with any other stories presented here I ask that you leave feedback in the form of comments, ratings, subscriptions, whatever else.