Rose-colored Glasses?

This week we’re supposed to write about a time when I’ve been duped or tricked by a retail outlet. I gave this a lot of thought, but I really had a difficult time coming up with an example of a business that actually cheated me. I suppose that’s because I rarely shop. And I tend to shrug things off more easily than some people, so maybe what some people would complain about I would attribute to a lack of understanding on my part. I suppose I like to think the best of people.

So I started to think about times when what I got didn’t seem to jive with what I thought I’d get. Almost all of them were instances when I ordered by mail. I learned my lesson quite early – no clothes shopping or purchasing of items if I can’t feel, touch, smell, or otherwise examine them before purchasing. I still order a lot of things online – but they’re usually things like office supplies, oboe reeds (from a supplier I’ve purchased from in person and trust), and gifts that my kids or grandkids have chosen and have sent me the links for.


So when have I been misled about what I was purchasing? The first time I recall this I was in my late twenties and wanted to present my new mother-in-law with a nice Christmas gift. I happened across a flyer showing a picture of a lovely stained glass Tiffany-style oil lamp at an astonishingly affordable price. The lamp in the picture was artfully arranged, on a reading table with a nice leather bound book next to it. I knew this was the gift to get me in good graces with my in-laws. I filled out the forms, wrote a check, and mailed them in (this is in the days before online shopping). A few weeks later a box arrived, containing a tiny plastic lamp. Plastic??!! I couldn’t recall any mention of plastic. It didn’t seem logical to have an oil-burning lamp made of a material that could melt. Of course, I couldn’t find the ad, and I didn’t keep the information on the package. I just threw the thing away and bought her something else.

beautiful woman model posing in elegant dress in the studio

I’ve also been disappointed whenever buying clothing by mail or online. Even when I buy apparel made for petite women I have to shorten dresses and slacks, and my waistline is several inches larger than the manufacturers think it should be. Since I don’t enjoy holding my breath all day, I don’t choose to purchase those items. But just once, I wish I could look like the women in the catalogs! If only the clothes could make me look so elegant and well-groomed and… Oh, well. Guess I’d better stick to the local stores.

bonbonsHigh-end restaurants often have me shaking my head. I don’t mind paying for quality, but there have been times when I’ve questioned how the establishment justified their prices on things, especially on desserts. My father once took me to a fancy restaurant for my birthday (well, it was fancy to our family) and he allowed me to order a dessert. After reading the descriptions I thought I was getting a luscious chocolate creation. I got THREE tiny chocolate spheres – no more than an inch in diameter. Yes, they were tasty. But I felt sooooo cheated. I guess that’s why wealthy people tend to be so thin. They’re used to paying big bucks for not much food.

So there it is. I don’t feel I’ve been duped, cheated, or misled by corporate America, mostly because I tend to buy things I know about or things that people I trust have recommended to me. And I think I live fairly simply.

How do you keep from being cheated?


About Patricia Kiyono

During her first career, Patricia Kiyono taught elementary music, computer classes, elementary classrooms, and junior high social studies. She now teaches music education at the university level. She lives in southwest Michigan with her husband, not far from her five children, nine grandchildren (so far), and great-granddaughters. Current interests, aside from writing, include sewing, crocheting, scrapbooking, and music. A love of travel and an interest in faraway people inspires her to create stories about different cultures. Check out her sweet historical contemporary romances at her Amazon author page:
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5 Responses to Rose-colored Glasses?

  1. jeff7salter says:

    Yeah, that lamp was definitely a rip-off.
    I’m hard to fit — in clothing — also. Always a gamble to buy clothes on-line. Also, sizing varies so much between types of clothing and where they were made.
    Desserts — yeah, stuff rarely looks as good (or plentiful) on the plate as it does in the menu or in advertisements. I’ve never yet seen a fast-food cheeseburger that even faintly resembled the one depicted.


  2. I used to have good luck buying clothes online.I’ve done pretty well for my grandkids and for gifts, but I am a hard fit anymore.
    I will have to do some thinking.


    • Patricia Kiyono says:

      Online shopping is a godsend when it comes to shopping for kids and grandkids! My daughter sent me a list of links this year for herself, her hubby, and her kids. All I had to do was click and enter my card info. As for the clothes, I think they fit worse the older I get.


  3. I love online shopping. I am not a fan of the certain catalogs though.
    That lamp would have been so disappointing.


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