I share this experience to show you the way to deal with bad news in a mature manner. The main character in this story may or may not be me depending on how crazy she comes off.
I love the book store, I thought, trailing my finger over the spines of books as I walked toward the Middle Grade section at the back. My goal was to get a few Christmas gifts and avoid buying anything for myself. I slowed as I came to the Young Adult section. Beautiful Creatures (the book) stared at me from it's perch on the top shelf with the other featured titles. I picked it up, felt the weight of it in my hands. The blurb on the back promised an amazing story. No. I was not buying a book for me. Especially not one that was so thick and would make me useless for days when I had so much to do. I put it away and found the books that I had gone there for.
At the register, books in hand, I noticed signs with large-printed warnings: ALL SALES FINAL I furrowed my brow. "Has your return policy changed?" I asked the guy (I'll pretend like I don't know his name) behind the counter.
"No, we're closing."
I gasped. Really loud. I hadn't been informed of this decision. "W-What?"
He got an apologetic look on his face. "Sorry."
(Now is the time where if you want to avoid overreacting, and appear mature and in control, you would just pay for your books, say, "that's too bad" and back away from the counter. But I didn't do that, instead I said....)
"No. You can't close." I handed him my credit card.
"Well, they're keeping the big one at Riverpark open."
(Now, is really the time where if you want to avoid looking slightly crazy, you take the pen he is holding, sign the sales slip, and walk away with your purchase. It would definitely not be the time to....)
I stared at the pen blankly, my eyes starting to sting from not blinking. "But that's all the way across town."
"I know, I'm sorry."
(Just sign the slip.)
"But I come here like once a week. Really? You're closing?" I took the pen and as I signed I started to think: How can I keep this bookstore open? What would I have to do? My neighbor is a reporter for the news. Could he do a story on it?
"Yes, we're really closing." He set the bag down in front of me.
"But what if you do really well during Christmas. Then maybe you'll stay open....right?"
He looked past me to the customer who had walked up behind me. "Have a good day," he said, obviously trying to tell me to walk away.
(Don't say anything at this point. Just walk away.)
"Well, it won't be a good day now that I know my bookstore is closing," I mumbled.
On the drive home I thought about how I could open up my own bookstore. Really. I thought seriously about this. Then (and when I say "then" I mean about two days later) I realized that the only reason I would be opening said bookstore was so I could shop in it. I didn't think this was a good enough reason (not to mention these things cost money).
So, if you are ever faced with a similar situation. Try not to let your denial play out in front of the poor helpless worker who has no control over the situation. Wait until you're in the car, turn on a sad song about loss, and sing really loud (not that I did this).