Broken Glass

I guess I am doing a series of stories on why you can’t take me anywhere. There are a lot of them. It’s a multi-part series that may take a long time to get through.


This was a few years ago when I lived in the tiny apartment on the beach. I had been seeing a guy, M, who lived on the other coast of Florida. It takes about two and a half hours to drive across the width of the state. We would drive back and forth almost every weekend.


I was visiting him and he was taking me to see the big city. Well, at least the famous stores in the big city. My side of the state didn’t have things like IKEA and Whole Foods and Crate and Barrel.


The first place we went was a restaurant called Datz. I really can’t even describe this place. If you are anywhere near Tampa and you do not eat here you are robbing yourself. Go there. They also have burlesque shows. Here are some pictures to help convince you.

They used to have this dark chocolate lavender truffle. It was heavenly.

Why do I torture myself this way?

Afterwards we went to a swanky Publix that had a parking garage and escalators for your shopping cart. I wanted to ride in the cart escalator but they wouldn’t let me.  I was impressed though. It was so fancy, like a movie.


And then we went to Crate and Barrel. I am really into food and cooking and love looking at expensive cooking utensils that I would never buy for myself. We were wandering around Crate and Barrel and I was drooling over Le Creuset french ovens and Vitamixes (which I now own).

Still drooling over one of these…

I bent down to look at something on a lower shelf and almost knocked over a display with my enormous purse. I got a bit spooked and suggested to M that we get a move on. I had suddenly realized it was only a matter of time before I broke something out of my price range.


We were making our way to the register when I stopped to look at a clear glass bowl. I love clear glass dishes. I set it back on the shelf a little too close to the edge.

So pretty

Gasping, I reached up and pushed it back. I may have pushed it slightly too hard.


It turns out there was no back to the display. They were just flat shelves.  Want to know how I know?

Look at this fucking display!

I pushed that single glass bowl into a stack of glass bowls. And I pushed that stack of glass bowls into a second stack of bowls. And that second stack of bowls into a third stack of bowls. And then all of that fell right off the back of the display and onto the ground.


The clattering noise of shattering bowls echoed through the shop. It was louder than the Christmas music playing in the background. There was broken glass everywhere.

It felt like this much broken glass.

M turned around and I could tell he was confused. He had turned his back on me for literally seconds. How could I have created such a mountain of destruction in mere seconds?


Our eyes met. In that instant I knew we were both contemplating just bolting for the door and we were having a silent argument about who could get there first. (Hint: Me).


But instead we froze like a deer in headlights. Everyone in the store turned to look at me. And I just stood there, helplessly.

This show is my biggest obsession lately.

My face was burning, my heart was racing. I was worried I was going to suffer a cardiac event from the crippling mortification. Plus, there was no way in hell I could afford to pay for all those bowls.


After a only a few seconds an employee came over. She was about my age and very sweet. She assured me that it was okay. They would clean it up. I was not the first person to break something in the store. And didn’t I think it was dumb that these displays didn’t have a backing on them.


I thanked her about a thousand times. I tried to stay and help them clean up all the broken glass, but to be honest I was shaking so much that I was pretty much useless.


But the bowl I had originally been trying to save didn’t get broken.


17 thoughts on “Broken Glass

  1. OMG. I am so glad the staff handled your incident with grace. Yes, it is TOTALLY DUMB not to have backs on the shelves! Oh good grief! I am kinda a bull in a china cabinet myself, so I probably wouldn’t even look!

  2. I refer this post to the awesome “roadside store scene” in Zombieland. We all want to be there and have that opportunity one day…

    • Maybe when everyone else is dead. And it is intentional. I didn’t even get to enjoy the destruction because it was just an embarrassing unintentional chain of events. Like most of my life.

      • Just gotta play it off with some quality acting.

        Knowing your penchant for destruction, have some business cards printed up and ready to go with your name and info (fake of course) with a title of something like Senior PDQI (Product Display Quality Inspector) or something like that.

        Let them know, after your have broken a few things, that their display was sub-par, not up to code and that they will get a full report the following week listing all their deficiencies and the expected time that corrective action will take place.

        All about the confidence (and admitted ability to bullshit on the spot)


  3. I, too, am afflicted with debilitating clumsiness. A friend & I once had to climb a fence to get to the nearest ATM since his car got booted. He offered to help me over but I insisted on doing it myself. I managed to rip my hand open on the twisted metal of the chain-link fence but didn’t feel it because it was cold out. Had to slink back into the hotel (where we had parked illegally to go to the movie theater next door) to beg them to let me wash my hand. Still have scars from that… At least I managed NOT to hand over bloody money!

      • With good cause, but all’s good when they’re fastened correctly. We hadn’t noticed that fence wasn’t fastened to the pole properly in one area; specifically the area which I tried to climb! :/

      • Welllllll…. it kinda does – friend offered to help me over BECAUSE it wasn’t fastened. Being the stubborn city-girl wanting to show off how clever & athletic I was… well, there ya go! Maybe not so much klutzy as DUMB! 😉

  4. I totally get the urge to make a beeline for the door! In my case, since I don’t move as fast as I used to, I would probably affect an expression of shock and disbelief, look and point down the aisle, and say something like, “Did you see what that kid did??”

  5. I just knocked over a display of the syrup that you use in slushees. It was the biggest, stickiest, most purple mess I’ve ever seen. I forgot that until just now. I guess I blocked it out because the embarrassment was just too much.

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