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We want you to bring us... A DRAPERY! (Edwin Hoogerbeets)
(original, chuckle, home)

One of the major problems plaguing the Western World today, along with
unemployment, national debt, and lawyers, is the total lack of ethics
of your average window covering store. Yes, that's right, those dens
of vipers known as drapery stores.

I don't know how many times I've gone into my friendly local drapery
store and succumbed to those nasty hard-sell tactics.  I've come home
with draperies(*) I didn't want, for windows I don't even have, and in
colours that sound like they are named by someone who should have been
working for a women's clothing catalogue instead. I mean, what is
"eggplant" anyways, and why don't they just call it "green?" I'm sure a
lot more guys would buy merchandise if they knew the colour was "green"
instead of "eggplant" or "puce" or "poly-cotton blend"... But that's a
subject for another submission.(**) When I bought my car, I got all
sorts of free things out of the dealership -- they were easy.  When I
went into the drapery store, they flatly refused to throw in some free
floormats, no matter how long I haggled.

That's why I was so happy to see the ad from "The Drapery Source" this
morning tucked in with my other junk mail.  They sent me a full-page,
multi-colour ad that included, right there at the bottom, their Code of
Ethics. They included this because, I believe, they were worried about
the absolutely horrible reputation that drapery stores have. (Ask
anyone about that reputation -- I'm sure you will get the same answer:

I would like to reproduce for you here, in plain ASCII format, their
Code of Ethics, and as my favourite Miami Herald columnist would say,
"I'm not making this up":


	We Pledge:

	To serve the public with honesty
	To advertise truthfully
	To advise customers responsibly
	To stand behind the merchandise we sell

	Window Coverings Association of America

My question is: do they come out when a customer enters the store?  Or
do we have to root around the store until we find a "window covering"
that has a pair of shoes sticking out from underneath? More
importantly, is it really ethical to hide from the customers like

What's more, do they continue to stand behind the mechandise after
they've sold it? ("Shh! Look there! There's someone behind your
curtains, Edwin." "No that's just my drapery salesperson, ensuring the
quality of my draperies from behind. More chicken?")

Now before you run off to purchase your own man-behind-the-scenes, you
should do a little research.  At a drapery store, they not only have
curtains and draperies, but they have blinds. And Venetian blinds (the
ones that provide the right "accent" to the furniture). And
mini-blinds, which by God really are different that Venetian blinds.
No-one would give me a straight answer as to how they were different.
They would just look sheepishly at their feet as they kicked around a
few dust bunnies, and tell me that "they just are." And
micro-mini-blinds, which are different again (no, really). I suspect
the difference lies in the fact they not actually viewable with the
naked eye. And Roman shades. And pull-down shades, and pleated shades,
and rayban shades, even cheap sunglasses.

The reason I say you need to do reasearch is that last time I went into
a store, the man tried to sell me some "swags." I kid you not. He
insisted that I should get some. I told him that my swags were just
fine thankyouverymuch, and that if he would like to step outside, I
would show him exactly how well my swags were.

Anyways, I sorta like sun. I think I'm not going to hang my draperies
on purpose.  So there. At least I won't have anyone hiding in my
apartment, and pop out at inopportune moments to sell me some swags.

Edwin H

(*) Note from Tom Robbins: "Drapes" is a verb. "Draperies" is a noun.
(**) Note to women: yes, I know "eggplant" isn't "green." (It's
"yellow.") I do have the Patagonia catalogue, and I have a personal and
patient tutor in "girl speak."

(From the "Rest" of RHF)

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