But if you break it, we mark it sold. Yes, today was the first time my child broke something in a store. Against my better judgment I let her play with a bottle of nail polish in the shopping cart. I’ve learned that as a parent you take calculated risks all the time simply in order to get through the day.
I have to hand it to her, she made a pretty grand mess from a simple drop. The color was “Pat on the Black,” and the square glass bottle never even bounced. There was an enormous crack, and then the white tile floor looked like the world’s biggest beetle had been crushed under foot, oozing thick midnight blood in coagulating puddles.
I went back down the aisle and got a new bottle. At the checkout counter I mentioned to the young man that he should ring me up for two of that item, due to the debacle in aisle five. He stared at me. “What do you mean?” I explained again that my child had broken what I originally intended to buy, and therefore I would be paying for both the broken item and the one I was taking with me.
After processing my apparently bizarre behavior, he thanked me over and over again for “being so honest.” I said you’re welcome, but the mess is right there, I think you know what happened. “Yes, but we don’t fingerprint. You didn’t have to admit it.”
I do understand what he was saying. When it happened, it even ran through my head to not even acknowledge it. The item was overpriced to begin with, and it’s easy to feel like the world owes you a “gimme” when you are trying to function with a toddler in tow.
But I don’t want a gimme. I want people to admit it when they cause damage, and I want them to make it right as best they can. It has to start with the little things.