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Ann Ipock: Ipock-a-Lips - Haute Couture at Walla-Alla-Marté

  • Wednesday, September 18, 2013

  • Updated Monday, September 23, 2013 11:33 am

My sister Nancy and I are very competitive. We work/solve the Jumble in our newspapers and often ask each other if we/she solved it. She's a huge game player, though I'm not so much. I've told her she's addicted to Candy Crush, Words with Friends and Ignore Your Family. Just kidding on the last one, but when she's visiting me from her home two hours away and pulls out that ding-dong iPad of hers, that's how I feel. We're both wordsmiths and love to read. She taught third grade until she retired and though I planned to be a kindergarten teacher – and our oldest daughter, Kelly is – life got in the way and I majored in dental hygiene.
Nonetheless, she is always using fancy words and playfully acting snobbish. She says “Tar-jay” for Target and “J.C. Pennay” for J.C. Penny. You've probably heard someone say those things? Anyway, imagine my shock and thrill yesterday when I came up with a fancy name for a very non-fancy store. I can't wait to tell Nancy.
I had gone with my dad to a doctor's appointment and was waiting in the hall for a test to be done. I've gotten to know the nurses there and I could actually tell you a brief history of the lives of a couple of them. Do you think that's because I'm friendly, I'm nosy or I just attract talkers like myself? Yep, you're right.
One of the girls remarked how cute my silky-looking coral tee shirt was. Without even thinking, I said, “Thank you! I got it at Walla-Alla-Marté.”
Of course, I knew what I meant but the other three didn't and they begged me to explain. That made it even funnier to me, but I said. “You know? Sure you do. Wal Mart.” Oh, they cracked up laughing. That's when I knew (though I've suspected) that it's soooooooooooo much easier to be funny in person than on the printed page. But we four kept on going and turned this fiasco into a comedy skit. One did voices and she sounded like Minnie Mouse. Another did the Southern redneck thing. I did the Northern New Yawk thing, saying  “coiffee.” Dang. I tried to find a word to rhyme with it – to further explain this to you, my dear, loved readers – and there isn't one. Now I'm thinking we Southerners are missing something 'cause our tongues and or lips just can not form that sound naturally. I can't even type it – geez. It's that elusive.
But getting back to Walla-Alla-Marté, I'm not promoting them or anything like that. Still, I find it sort of cray-cray that my George tee-shirts at $4.99 are almost identical to my J. Jill tee-shirts at $49.99. What the – what the? I've never been a snob, but I love a bargain and I'm a pretty savvy shopper. As a matter of fact, my dear friend, Carol and I found unheard of bargains at the Outlet Mall in Destin earlier this summer. It was the 4th of July week and it was raining; so you can imagine where everyone congregated. Forget the beach! Forget the fireworks. Zero in on shopping.
Almost every store had BOGO offers. Many had signs touting 50 percent off and some were 75 percent off. Mostly they just wanted you to open a charge account where you would save an additional 15 percent off of your already 50 percent off, with a coupon of $10 off in the future – or, you could use it that day. Are you with me? Let's just say I got a little overzealous at White House, Black Market. And now I'm getting daily emails. Honey, we have become friends. One store I went to had a clerk call me later to make sure I was happy with my purchases. Why, yes, I was. But I'm not happy with the bill that came in afterwards. Bleh.
What's a girl to do? Well, at another store I sometimes frequent they don't have charge cards available for further reduction and you don't get e-mails from them. Heck, they don't even have coupons – though one perk is the people-watching. No Saturday night movie can compare. But the truth is I'm wearing my Walla-Alla-Marté tee shirts like a uniform – nothing else feels as good or looks as good these days. And a few things from Destin hanging in my closet still have the tags on them. So that, my friends, is what I call a real deal at Walla-Alla-Marté.

Ann Ipock “Life is Short, I Wish I Was Taller” amipock@ec.rr.com www.annipock.com

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