Toying With Her

| Working | November 1, 2013

(I have a cuddly toy with me that I have had for years, and it’s sort of a comfort blanket. He comes everywhere with me and looks very scruffy as he is well loved. Since on this occasion I am travelling, I am holding him instead of having him in my suitcase. I have some time before my connection, so I wander through some local shops. Everything is fine until I try to leave a toy store I’ve been looking in. I am very shy and get easily frightened by people who raise their voice at me. I am also a teenager and seemingly too old for toys. There are two employees in the store, but only one is present at the moment.)

Employee #1: “Hey, you!”

Me: “Hmm?”

Employee #1: “Are you going to pay for that?”

Me: “Pay for what, sorry?”

Employee #1: “That toy! That toy you’re holding.”

Me: “Um, I didn’t pick him up in here; I walked in with him. In fact, I’ve had him for years. And besides, he’s all scruffy; I don’t think you’re allowed to sell things as scruffy as him.”

Employee #1: “Him? Who’s him? I was talking about that toy!”

Me: “Er, so am I. His name’s [Toy’s Name] and I’ve had him for years; you’ve made a mistake.”

Employee #1: “Look, I don’t have time for this; just put it back and I won’t call the police.”

Me: “But he’s mine!”

Employee #1: “You’re too old for toys; give it back.”

Me: “No I won’t; he’s mine.”

(The employee marches over to me, terrifying me and making me clutch my toy even tighter.)

Employee #1: “Just give it back already!”

Me: *in tears* “No! He’s mine! I’ve had him for years; you can’t take him off me!”


(The employee then makes a grab for my toy and I pull away. I am now very scared and in floods of tears. Another employee comes to see what is going on.)

Me: “No! No! He’s mine! You can’t take him!”

Employee #2: “[Employee #1]! What’s going on?”

Employee #1: “I caught this girl stealing this toy! Now she won’t give it back and keeps saying that it’s hers now for some reason.”

Me: “But he IS mine!”


(I am sitting on the floor, crying, still clutching my toy.)


Employee #2: “[Employee #1]! That’s enough! If you’re so sure she stole this toy, then go and find where she got it from; I’m quite sure I’ve never seen one like that in the store!”

(Employee #1 sulks off. Employee #2 sits on the floor beside me.)

Employee #2: “So, want to tell me your side of the story, love?”

Me: “I was just looking round and when I went to leave, he said I had to pay for [Toy’s Name], but I didn’t get him here. I’ve had him for years; I never go anywhere without him! I can’t sleep without him! You can’t take him off me!”

Employee #2: “I see. Can I have a look at [Toy’s Name], please?”

(I nod and show him my toy, still keeping a firm grip in case he tries to take him off me too.)

Employee #2: “My, he’s a precious little thing, isn’t he? I think he might need a bath though, and not with those tears, either! Maybe a few repair stitches too! Come on, smile; I believe you. I know we don’t sell anything like him, and we certainly wouldn’t be allowed to sell something that well loved! Now go on; get out of the shop before [Employee #1] gets back!”

Me: *wipes away tears* “Really?”

Employee #2: “Yes, it’s obvious how much you love him anyway. Go on; run before [Employee #1] catches us!”

(I smile and run out of the store clutching my toy. I look back to see Employee #1 marching towards Employee #2, but I don’t hear any more. I just ran to the station and remained there until my connection arrived! But thank you, Employee #2 for being so understanding!)

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