“Wow! I guess we’re all just cattle then. Thanks for the ego boost,” I retorted sarcastically as I grabbed the five outfits to try. As exciting and exhilarating as it was, this guy was just rubbing me the wrong way all together. I tried on the outfits, picked the only one I liked, and showed Anthony. He immediately vetoed it.
“No, get the black one. Mike will like it better on you,” he snapped.
“Well, I don’t care. I’m wearing it, so I choose this outfit. We have a whole store of outfits. Your selection is weak,” I responded heading back into the dressing room.
“Listen, I’m here to do my job and don’t really care for your attitude. If you want to upset Mike, then do it on your own dime. Your choice.” Now Anthony was mad.
“Don’t mind if I do. Bye,” I said walking towards the cash register. I walked past the shoes and realized that I would need a pair to match the outfit, so I quickly tried a few on. Anthony followed me closely, commenting on each pair I chose. They were either not sexy enough, not classy enough, or Michael simply wouldn’t like them.
“Why are you still bugging me? I’ve got this handled and frankly you are getting on my nerves,” I responded.
“You need my help. I promise you, you do not want to let Michael down tonight.”
“What’s your deal? This is none of your business. You’ve done your job and earned your pay now move along,” I argued back.
“You aren’t just going to a steakhouse, Vivian. It’s his company party and everyone will be there. You will be his arm candy and you must not only be respectable, but you cannot look like you’re still in college. It’s bad enough that you’ll never get away from looking like his daughter. So, just let me help you. Let’s start over. Clearly we got off on the wrong foot,” he said calmly. “Hi, my name is Anthony and I am here to assist you in finding something suitable for tonight’s event. Please return to the rack where more outfits have been chosen for you.” Anthony smiled.
Michael just pulled one over on me and Anthony knew it. I was so embarrassed; I couldn’t get the deer-in-the-headlights look off my face.
Michael told me we were going with “friends.” I couldn’t believe what he was doing and how embarrassed I was. I thought this was going to be a real date, but here Michael was putting his own needs before mine again. Nothing could make up for how angry I was.
I looked at Anthony and simply started walking back to the women’s department. I said nothing, just tried on outfit after outfit, and simply took whatever Anthony had chosen for me, as he knew better what would be appropriated. He had won; I was far too dumbfounded to even be upset.
We headed to the makeup counter, chose a few items, and then checked out. What should have been exciting had turned into a raw, joyless, and humiliating experience that I’ll never forget.