Thursday, January 22, 2009
Old Lady Face Cream
Is there something that I don't know? Is there some coveted ingredient in Olay Definity that can be cooked down into a form of amphetamine that will give kids a cheap high? Or is it possible that people are so desperate for the fountain of youth that they are stealing old lady face cream?
The reason I ask is because while looking for some new facial cleanser the other day at my local grocery store, I found that all of the Olay Definity products were empty boxes marked with uneven black lettering from a chunky magic marker: "For Display Only -- Ask for Assistance". HUH?
I waffled between wanting to ask for it just because I was intrigued (and wanted to know why it was put away in the back) and wanting to rebel and buy anything else on the shelf.** Yes, I wanted to ask, but in my head, the potential scenario went something like this...
Me: (to clerk who is stocking potato chips) Excuse me, ma'am? I would like a package of the Definity face wash.
Clerk: Aisle 12.
Me: No, you don't understand. It's just an empty display box.
Clerk; Oh. Uh, ask the pharmacist.
(trudge, trudge, trudge)
Me: (to pharmacist) I'd like a package of the Definity Face Wash.
Pharm: Oh. (looks around to see if anyone is listening) How old are you?
Me: What does that matter??
Pharm: There's an age requirement.
Me: Is there a height requirement, too? How tall are you really back there on your raised platform?? Hmm?
Pharm: No need to get nasty, ma'am. There is an age requirement, I tell you.
Me: What is it?
Pharm: How old are you?
Me: (recognizing the recursive conversation is going nowhere) Can I speak to your supervisor?
Pharm: Let me get the manager.
(tap, tap, tap)
Me: (noticing that my frozen foods are melting, I feel a furrow growing between my brows) Where is he?
Pharm: She'll be here shortly.
(large, homely woman arrives and looks me up and down)
Me: I just want to buy some damned face wash ... and maybe some damnd face cream, too.
Mgr: How old are you?
Me: (banging my head against the wall near the blood pressure machine) Damn it. I'm 46, ok??
Mgr: Have you ever been convicted of a felony?
Me: What the--? NO!
Mgr: Have you ever had a problem with addictive substances?
Me: Again, NO!
(Manager disappears into back room with a jailhouse ring of keys. Comes back moments later with the coveted packages of face wash and face cream. Pharmacist glances at me nervously and checks to see if anyone is watching us.)
Pharm: (ringing it up) That'll be $55.
Me: Fifty-five!? For face stuff that'll be gone in a month? At which time we'll have to dance this waltz again??
Pharm: You're lucky to be getting this. It's experimental and highly sought after by European spies.
Me: (Imagining my face dissolving into a rapid outbreak of zits from the experimental treatment) Nah....I guess I'll pass.
And then I'd be escorted out of the store and told never to return.
After playing all this out in my head, I decided on something different.** It wasn't worth it to go through the red tape just to get some products I could freely order from an online retailer. I just don't get it. I mean, they never restricted the old lady face cream my mom used to love - Avon's Rich Moisture. It came in a little aqua-colored jar (though it was once released in the vanity jar, shown in the picture above...Mom had one on her dresser till the day she died) and lasted 6 months. And she? Never had a wrinkle until her 60s. I can't say the same for me, but with my sensitive skin, I never know what will work.
I tell you what won't work...having to go to a clerk who is tired and cranky and works for minimum wage and asking to buy expensive facial products. If any of you have a clue as to why the stuff is suddenly so hard to get, let me know! I'm curious!
Peace - D
** I ended up buying Olay Regenerist facial cleanser, because it was the closest to what I was looking for...in case you were wondering.