I thought applying for a job (and being unsuccessful) was the biggest way to feel like a loser.
I was wrong.
Selling stuff that you have made yourself at a Saturday market when nobody wants to buy it? Thats the biggest way to feel like a total waste of Earth-space. L O S E R.
Last night i spent three hours baking trays of cinnamon buns and assorted other treats. Then this morning I was up before the crack of dawn so we could score ourselves a good selling spot. My table display was colorful and attractive. Everything was labelled. Me and my helpers were apron-ned and sterile gloved. And we had super smiles plastered on our faces. (The smile was the most difficult part for me…) We waited. And….?
An hour passes by. Nothing. Nobody even sniffs in our direction. The desire to shrivel up and disappear grows within me with every passing minute. Nobody wants to buy my cinnamon buns or my oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. I am a loser.
Then a woman stops at our table. YES! But she doesnt want to buy anything. She has a suggestion, “You should let people have a sample so they can taste your food, so then they will know if they want to buy it.”
Good idea. What a nice woman! Graciously I offer her some cookies. She nibbles. She looks thoughtful. And then she shakes her head. “Im sorry dear, but I dont like it.”
Oh. Okay then. (The loser knife twists a little deeper in my heart.) I smile. Graciously. “That’s alright! Thanks anyway.” I want her to get lost now. So I can mope. But she isn’t finished.
“Aww..nobody is buying anything! Look at you, poor girl. Im so sad for you. Nobody wants your food.”
I think I hate this woman. Why doesnt she just go away?
She then proceeds to tell me all the things i should do to make my food edible and sell-able. In a really loud voice. Because she’s such a nice and helpful person. “These cookies need coconut. And maybe some peanuts.And your signs need to be bigger. And this is the wrong kind of food for this market. And you should put condensed milk in that icing instead of cream cheese. And blah blah blah…”
My smile is getting a little forced. All my graciousness is fast deserting me. But she’s not done. Oh no. She’s got more friendly tricks up her sleeve. She starts calling out to people passing by, “Hey you, come and buy some food from this girl eh! She’s made all this stuff by herself and she’s not selling any! Hey you, come try this one. This poor girl, oh I just feel so bad for her!” They all give me pitying glances as they speed up and hurry past, in a rush to get away from me and my horrible cookies.
Now I know I hate this woman. Not only am I a loser with crappy cookies, I am also a loser who is providing a LOSER LIVES HERE free show to everyone at the market. Oh the shame of it. I want to self-combust. Or choke my new best friend to death. With cookies.
She prattles on for a while longer. Telling me her life story. Telling me how she is a pro at selling curry and roti at the markets. Telling me how I am such a good listener and she just loves talking to me. And she’s just so glad she came to the market today so we could meet. I dont think i can take much more of her soul-killing friendliness. Then just before she finally walks away, she gives me her phone number “So you can call and order some good roti from me!” Lady, there aint no way in hell I’m buying roti from you. Ever.
She leaves me in a state of existential disappointment – whatever made me think that i could sell stuff at a market anyway? This isnt me. Im not bubbly and smiley, I cant ooze with charm. I have zip sales skills. I’m not tough enough to handle the rejection. And my cookies are awful. I want to go home.
I text HRH with my sad tale of woe. He txts back. “She doesnt know anything. Your baking is the bomb. And we will eat whatever you dont sell, so there.”
I love this man. He is better than Ryan Reynolds,Sonny Bill Williams, Edward Cullen AND Jacob all smushed up together in one steaming hot Harrison Ford combination. With my shaky confidence restored, I stick a silly smile back on my face and bravely go back to the world of market commerce.
One hour later, just before the rain starts pouring down, my team has told every single cinnamon bun. And most of the cookies.YES! My baking is worth cold, hard cash! I have meaning and value in this universe. I turn off the neon LOSER sign flashing on my forehead. I am jubilant.I want to sew myself a skanky dress made of all my two dollar coins and dance a Showgirl victory dance where that annoying woman is selling her roti, SEE! MY BAKING IS GOOD, SO THERE! YOU HAD NO CLUE WHAT YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT, IN YOUR FACE LADY!
But she had already gone home. So I had to be happy just fantasizing about it.
Shakin my booty at the markets.