Sunday, November 7, 2010

"I don't know what an end cap is, but I'll take it!"

That's what I told my boss at Fruth when he gave me the choice of taking care of the office supply aisle or being in charge of end caps. I KNEW office supplies would bore the life out of me so "end caps" won by default. I quickly learned that end caps are those shelves at the end of the aisle in the store. It was my job to make displays that would make people want to shop.

Turns out I was good at it. I even won a national end cap promotion for QC products. The prize was $500.00. With that win I sealed my fate, I was forever in charge of end caps for our store. My job also expanded to doing displays anywhere and with anything I wanted all over the store. Some of those, customers still talk about.

1. My friend Bob and I collaborated on an "area 54" end cap for Halloween. I put a three foot tall alien in the ice machine. We completed the display with a spinning warning light mounted on the cooler. We also had an alien embryo keychain exhibit and off to the side we had a life sized spaceship (an outdoor space heater). We mounted alien masks to the side and we sold out of them immediately.

2. My all time favorite, was an old english winter garden. I had a nighttime snow background which set off a beautiful display of porcelain dolls that we had had for years. There was even a musical ice skating Christmas display. We sold out of porcelain dolls that year.

3. My first major effort was an entire wall (12 foot tall by 9 foot wide) of Halloween products. It looked like a haunted house and at the door of the house was the cutest little trick or treater you ever did see. All the monsters were swooping down on her. That one got an honorable mention from corporate.

That was back when I used to work hard for my money at Fruth. Now I just hang out and pretend I'm the Walmart greeter. I consider myself the "Queen of Front One." If anybody else worked like I do now they would fire them. I am being rewarded for years of hard work (even though I took a pay cut back to minimum wage - but that's all I'm worth now). Customers like me and I like the job and I do my best. I guess that's all right.

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