Tuesday 18 September 2012

A Tuesday Tale - an innocent at work

I've written before about things that happened when I worked on Saturday afternoons in our local charity shop (aka thrift store). But, this one probably totally takes the biscuit!
I really enjoyed working on the till and truly thought I was 'Little Miss Helpful', you got to know regular customers really well - or so I thought :(

I'd imagine just why they were buying stuff from us, older ladies buying wool then sitting comfortably knitting in the evenings, children playing with pre-loved toys, folk enjoying a jigsaw, young girls showing off their clothing bargains......and so it went on.

One guy, quiet and very innocuous, used to nip in quite often late on a Saturday afternoon to look for bargains. 'Ah, how sweet' I thought, 'buying clothes for his housebound Mum'. Then he began asking Little Miss Helpful's advice. Would this top go with that skirt and so on - and I realised that it was in fact a housebound partner/wife he was buying for. After all, I couldn't see his elderly Mum wearing a chiffon top and a mini-skirt. I even advised him on some makeup for her - we were allowed to sell sealed and unused toiletries and makeup BTW.

Then, one Saturday he whizzed in just before closing time and quietly asked if he could buy a wedding dress, reduced to £25. 'Fine' said Little Miss Helpful here and scurried off to get Rita, our manageress, as the rail was very high and we needed steps to reach up to remove wedding and evening gowns. Rita grabbed the steps and when I pointed out who the customer was whispered something to me about him working with radios before going to the front of the shop to lift down said wedding dress.

I took a few steps to follow her and a big light bulb suddenly went on in this stooopid little head.What she'd actually said was 'He's our local tranny' - and in my day a 'tranny' was short for transistor radio. Ha, not so at all - it's now short for transvestite innit :(

Rita, seeing the light finally dawn on Little Miss Helpful, said 'Can you tidy up the bric-a-brac Di, while I serve'. She could see the bright red face and bulging eyes on yours truly, who was likely to burst into hysterics at any moment. So, I hopped around behind the tall bric-a-brac shelves - tidying and peeking at the same time - whilst a huge pair of donkey's ears grew outta the top of my head :( And when Rita threw in a veil for free I almost wet myself on the spot!

Thankfully, Mr Tranny paid up sharpish then disappeared and the shop was closed for the day. At that point, the girls in the back of the shop all raced out hooting with laughter at 'Donkey' here - they'd been watching over the previous months (yup, it had been months) and marvelling at the innocence. One of them howled 'You didn't even flicker or begin to twig the other week when he came in and bought those ladies size 8 patent leather red high heels,  you Dumbo!'

The embarrassment at my own stupidity was a source of much amusement for some time afterwards I can tell you.

That evening, when I was relating the tale to Len over a much-needed glass of vino in the garden he quietly observed that I really shouldn't be let out to play without supervision :(

Let me also say, it's each to their own, I have no problems with what folk do (so long as it isn't hurtful or criminal) some of my best friends are either gay or transsexual....... my only problem is that I truly had absolutely no idea so for long!



  1. Love your tales Di, you get me spilling coffee ove the keyboard every time! Glad it's not just me who does these things, though our local tranny sadly cannot be missed (denim skirt, fishnet tights... need I say any more). Each to their own!

  2. Ah bless, that's so sweet. I love reading your tales.
    Caz x

  3. Good job i had just finished my drink The Doc had poured out. Nearly got bubbles up me nose. You are soooooo funny. Hugs Mrs a.

  4. Hee hee. Size 8 is a small shoe size for a man, isn't it? Hmmmm.


  5. Well why WOULD you suss him when you were kindly thinking he was helping someone else out!

    I'm sure I'd have done the same as you and ended up red faced upon realisation. Mind you, the smirking in the back room might have been a give away!

    Sarn xxx

  6. Don't feel bad I had a friend wo worked for 5 years with a woman and never figured she was a lesbian despite the appearance of the partner!

  7. Great story, Di! Though if it makes you feel any better, I'd have probably done the same as you!

  8. I am laughing (crying) so much I can hardly see the screen...can you tell I touch type all day!?? Brilliant Di. Priceless in fact!! Having a few of these in Abergavenny so wouldn't be such a surprise but I think I would have been like you for a bit!!
    Going to have to share this with Hubby!! And Yes! Tranny did at one time have a different meaning!
    Brilliant Di!

  9. What a pity people are not as sweet and innocent these days. I would be quite proud of this tale.
    Tucked up in bed on a Sunday night listenting to Radio Luxemburg top twenty and the adverts Horrace Batchelor, from Keynsham, yes on my tranny tucked under my pillow.

    Don't know why my posts are not showing had this problem a few months agao with some of the people I follow but it all came back right in the end. But I did have to follow them again.

    Kath x

  10. Oh Di - I am sleepy at the moment but have just woken myself up giggling like a loon! I am just wondering if the blind cowboy on a galloping horse would have noticed!!

    I bet he was so grateful for your help though. Bless.

    Hugs to you and thanks for the story and for making me smile.

    Hugs Sue P xx

  11. If it's any consolation, Di, I would've been sitting with you in the dark! What a tale to tell though! Thanks for sharing it with us. PS Was he getting married do you think or just dressing up! LOL! I can't begin to imagine!

  12. OMG Di I'm so glad I've learned to put my drink well out of the way before I read your posts. It could have been worst. When I moved back home I worked in a bank for a while; one day in walked the guy who'd taken me to my Jr. Prom. Long hair, make up, manicured LONG red nails, lovely dress, high heels and matching purse. I nearly fainted. Funny thing is he/she didn't recognize me.

  13. Oh, bless you, Di, that was hysterical! I think I would have thought the same as you, maybe up until the time I saw that smidge of makeup still around his eyes! Otherwise, how were you to know? I'm so thankful they turned you wise before you ran square into him coming out a shop door one day all dressed in a stylish outfit you helped him pick out!!


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