Deal or No Deal?

by Laraine Newman
Print Email

saletag.jpgTis the season of Sample Sales, or so it seems when the mailers start arriving announcing this 40% off (but it's in downtown LA) or that 80% off, but not until two weeks from now when I’ve completely forgotten about it and f*#k it anyway, where’s the instant grat? I subscribe to Daily Candy and Top Button, the latter being exclusively an online sample sale site. There is also a mother at my younger daughter’s school whose clothing line I happen to love that has her sample sale around this time too.

It’s taken me a long time to become a savvy shopper when it came to these ‘deals’.  I was the sucker that clipped the coupon for something at the market I would normally never eat. I would be under the illusion my family might try the yogurt covered zucchini chips for 50% off. Invariably it would linger past its expiration date and get thrown out. This always jettisoned me into the  ‘I’m gonna be homeless someday, why oh why did I waste my money like that??” fear fantasy.  I would vow never to make that mistake again and I finally learned that the only coupons worth clipping for me are batteries and toothbrushes.  Do I really need that 35¢ off the second four pack of Charmin? Hell no!

sale2.jpgBut when it came to sample sales, it became a whole different ball game. Billion Dollar Babes presented huge airport hangar sales that included up and coming designers as well as established and edgy young LA designers.  I loved so much of what I saw and most of the pieces were one of a kind and would never be found in stores.

I hadn’t yet reached a point of sophistication where I understood that I simply needed basics for a well-rounded wardrobe and I kept gravitating towards the same things: jeans and t-shirts. This always left me confounded by how limited my wardrobe was when it was time to go on an audition dressed as a lawyer or a school principal. Hmmm. Well, maybe this lawyer is like James Woods’ character in True Believer; a former hippie who never really became a part of the establishment….Ahhh, no.

There was also the schism of what looked appropriate on me at my, ahem, age. That conundrum left the ‘this’ll fit me when I lose that 5 lbs’ fool’s paradise in the dust.
The designs I really loved weren’t really for my age group.  I had no business wearing them.  There was also another problem: The Girls.  My boobs, that is.  I used to think having boobs would be the greatest imaginable thing. But, as they say, be careful what you wish for. 

sale.jpgMine grew (no lie) and at first I thought “I am the luckiest gal that ever lived!” But then one day, I was running downstairs and I noticed that ‘the girls’ were a step behind, so to speak.  The weight of their bouncing had the same impact one might feel at the recoil of a gun going off.  Ewww. But the biggest bummer was, they were the enemy of fashion.  I wanted to have a lean silhouette, but in reality, I had the hen-like shape of Aunt Bea from Andy of Mayberry.

So, taking stock, I finally figured out what I needed and what looked good on me, but there was one more lesson to learn.  The online sale and the sale where you can’t try anything on. Don’t. That’s all I can say. Don’t. Three days ago I went to the sale I vowed never to go to again. The one by the designer from my daughter’s school. You can’t try anything on! And sure enough, when I got the stuff home, that cashmere sweater that I thought was such a steal, made me look 7 months pregnant (because of the f@*king ‘girls’!) and that really unique t-shirt was so tight it highlighted all my ‘back fat’. 

Recently we had a garage sale.  As I lugged the bags of clothes that never got worn, some still with the price tags on, down to the basement, cursing to myself, it dawned on me that I was passing on the misery.  The poor suckers that bought my unused clothes had the same problem. They wouldn’t be able to try the clothes on either. However, I must say, after dealing with the specimens of humanity at our garage sale, I wasn’t that sorry.  But, that’s another story for another day.

 

Laraine Newman is a founding member of The Groundlings Theatre Company and an original cast member of Saturday Night Live.  She lives in her hometown of Los Angeles with her husband and two daughters. 

Add comment


Security code
Refresh

 

restaurant news

Joe's Restaurant
Los Angeles
by Amy Spies

joes9.jpgJoe’s restaurant on Abbot-Kinney in Venice, California is a delight and a deal.  Michelin thinks so, having just given this French-California gem a star.  And my entire family agrees, and we are...

Read more...
One Night in Portsmouth
New England
by Lisa Dinsmore

img 2580On our recent summer "vacation" to the East Coast, we had one day to ourselves. Blissfully alone, with only each other to have to worry about and please. Instead of the unending stream of family...

Read more...
Three Fat Boys in Astoria
New York
by Michael Tucker

ImageCall out the riot squad! Barricade the streets! Lock up your daughters! The Three Fat Unemployed Actors’ Lunch Club is on the loose again — this time in the far reaches of Queens at the wonderful

Read more...
A Great Burger in Guerneville
Northern California
by Scott R. Kline

Boon Eat + Drink in Guerneville on the Russian River is a delightful place with delightful food. We stopped by one Saturday to have lunch. The summertime crowd was out in force. The restaurant...

Read more...