All I Want For Christmas Is Michelle Obama

, , , | Right | December 25, 2019

(My mom owns her own business, selling various kinds of bags: purses, backpacks, diaper bags, etc. One of her most popular lines that she’s carried for years now is a line of purses that have photos of Michelle Obama on them. Usually, it’s a collage of magazine covers featuring her, but there are a few that just have one portrait of her on the front. She sells a TON of these bags every year, to people from all different backgrounds, races, etc. This summer, I am helping her at one of the out-of-state festivals. I’m manning the tent by myself and showing a wallet to a middle-aged white woman when she looks at the back wall of the tent and scoffs. I’ll go ahead and note that my mom and I are white.)

Customer: “Why on earth would you carry those bags?” *points to the Michelle Obama bags*

(I’ve worked in retail before, so I put on my best fake smile.)

Me: “Oh, those! That line is one of our best sellers!”

Customer: “Oh, you mean…” *leans in and stage-whispers* “With the blacks?”

(I pause for a second. I want to take the wallet out of her hands and tell this lady to buzz off, but this is my mom’s business and I don’t want to do anything like that without consulting her.)

Me: “Actually, we sell them to all kinds of people. They’re quite popular. They were her number-one seller last Christmas.”

Customer: *backtracks a little* “Oh, well, I guess my Republican brain won’t let me like them.” *laughs and hands the wallet back to me* “I’ll think about the wallet.”

(The rest of the day, we’re so busy I don’t have time to mention the incident to my mom, but that evening at dinner I tell her about it.)

Mom: “Another one? That’s been happening a lot this year. People are so ignorant.”

Me: “I wanted to tell her point-blank that we didn’t want her business, but I decided to wait until I could talk to you about it.”

Mom: “That’s exactly what you should do, [My Name]! When it comes up I’ve been saying:’ Why would I not want to sell a bag that’s obviously so popular with people? If it offends you that much to buy a purse that’s sold next to one of my Michelle Obama bags, you can go find it somewhere else.’”

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