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She Came in Loaded for Bear.

July 28, 2022

I was a teen at the time. Selling shoes. It was my part time job.

The store was upscale, the shoes expensive, women’s and men’s.

The store was located on the corner of an open air mall near Yonge and Finch, in Willowdale, Ontario. Murray’s Highgrade Footwear.

It was late on a Saturday afternoon. It must have been towards November. It was getting dark outside.

A woman entered the store. She wore a scowl on her face. She demanded to speak with the manager.

She withdrew a box from a bag and shoes from the box.

The heal from one of the shoes had separated. It was dangling.

Angrily she complained about what she had paid for the shoes and how she had almost broken her neck.

The manager, an older gentleman, listened patiently through her rant, blame and demand for a refund.

Only when she was completely finished did he speak.

With empathy he said the following:

“I am so sorry for your experience and near injury. And I don’t blame you for being upset and wanting a refund. I would feel the same if I were you and I would want a refund too.

However, I can’t help you.

You will have to take the shoes across the mall to the other store where you bought them.”

The look in the woman’s eyes shifted from anger to embarrassment. She couldn’t hold eye contact.

The manager kindly put her shoes back in the box and the box into the bag. He handed the package to the woman.

Without a word, she turned and left the store.

The manager said nothing more.

I learned so much in my few years of working part time in that store. The life lessons were many.


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I am Gary Direnfeld and I am a social worker. Check out all my services and then call me if you need help with a personal issue, mental health concern, child behavior or relationship, divorce or separation issue or even help growing your practice. I am available in person and by video conferencing.

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Gary Direnfeld, MSW, RSW

gary@yoursocialworker.com
www.yoursocialworker.com for counseling and support

www.garydirenfeld.com – to build your successful practice

Gary Direnfeld is a social worker. Courts in Ontario, Canada, consider him an expert in social work, marital and family therapy, child development, parent-child relations and custody and access matters. Gary is the host of the TV reality show, Newlywed, Nearly Dead, former parenting columnist for the Hamilton Spectator and author of Marriage Rescue: Overcoming the ten deadly sins in failing relationships. Gary maintains a private practice in Georgina Ontario, providing a range of services for people in distress. He speaks at conferences and workshops throughout North America. He consults to mental health professionals as well as to mediators and collaborative law professionals about good practice as well as building their practice.

One Comment
  1. Jack Love permalink

    I love this story.

    Jack D. Love, LMFT
    CA Lic #LMFT7778
    Forensic Family Serviceshttp://jacklove.com/
    1828 Tribute Road, Suite L
    Sacramento, CA 95815
    916-929-5765

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