The following began as a Yelp review, and ended as a really awesome Yelp review. Thus, a blog entry.

I showed up at the Atlantic Station Express today to return a pair of $23 jeans I had purchased at a different Express store. What happened in the 11 minutes I spent in the Atlantic Station store is almost beyond belief.

Atlantic Station Express store front
The Atlantic Station Express storefront.

It is worth mentioning at this point that I was in a good mood going into the store. I was on one of those post-sports-playing endorphin highs that so many of today's fat youth could use so many more of. I walked in with the distressed pair of too-tight jeans in hand, and a woman greeted me with a friendly "Are you returning those?" to which I replied yes. "Okay, she'll help you right here."

Then I met Super Bitch. Super Bitch was actually pretty cute, but the look on her face said, "I hate you and everything you have to return" (one thing). The tattoo on her neck also said, in so many ink designs, "Hi, I'm a bitch" (her tattoo wasn't that super).

The store was practically empty. I actually might have been the only person in there at 6:45pm on a Wednesday. It was one of those moments when you think, "Wow, I bet it's nice to work in such a trendy, comfortable retail store right now, shooting the shit with co-workers your own age, hunting for new clothes to buy at the employee discount."

Super Bitch looked at the jeans I set on the counter and said, in the snarkiest tone possible, "Do you have a receipt?" I replied yes, pulled it out of my wallet, and handed it to her.

"The jeans aren't on here," she said, in classic I-told-you-so fashion. She handed me back the receipt, rolling her eyes.

I looked at it and said (again, objectively speaking, IN A GOOD MOOD), "Oh, it's actually right here (pointing), the ink's just gotten faded out," which it had. She took the receipt again in her hands, this time pulling it only slightly closer to her face.

Unnecessarily long silence.

I waited for an argument, but nothing happened. She then started typing things into the cash register. I can only assume this meant she had finally acknowledged the word "Denim" in super faded type, and had begun processing the return. That or she heard the "So You Think You Can Be a Super Bitch?" tryouts were coming to town and she only had one day left to prepare.

Instead of just processing the return, though, her vengeance mode kicked in. Prior to handing her the receipt, I had ripped off the "$25 off $50" Express coupon that I had gotten after my initial purchase and stapled to the receipt, mostly just to allow her to process the return without junk hanging around. Again, it was ME who stapled this to the receipt, to remind myself to use it, since I knew I would be in Express again to return the jeans. I could have just left it at home, but I actually PLANNED to spend $50 more dollars!

"Well you'll have to give me that coupon if you want to return the jeans," Super Bitch said, in her "OK, I'm not fucking around now, you're about to feel the wrath of the Super Bitch Slap" voice.

Wha, wha, whaaaaatt??!!

Out of the corner of my eye, I could see the warm yellow glow of the evening sun peeking in the sleek modern facade of the front doors, framed by the clear blue sky reflecting off the mirrored building on the other side of the street.

"GIVE ME, the coupon."

I peeked to the left to see if the thick fog and dark gray storm clouds had rolled in yet.

Still sunny and beautiful.

I was completely baffled. How, given the circumstances, was it possible to be that much of a bitch? Did I smell that bad? Is there a dress code in Express? WAS PURE EVIL SEEPING FROM MY PORES? Did she want to have sex with me so bad, but knew I wouldn't accept her advances, so she skipped straight to hating me? How did she know I wouldn't accept her advances?

I decided never to buy anything at Express again. I prayed I could just get my money back, and get the hell out of whatever Pandora's Retail Box I had walked into.

I handed her the coupon.

She continued to process the return, scowling every time she was forced to communicate with me like, "Do you have the credit card you used?" and "Sign here [on the pin pad]."  Never a please or thank you. In fact, when all was said and done, there wasn't even a "Thanks" or "Have a good day" or even "Have a day." I just grabbed the new receipt and walked away. It was a beautiful unspoken acknowledgment of mutual disgust. Only I felt curiously enlightened, and I'm pretty sure she just felt the instinctual but hardly satisfactory sensation a vampire gets after sucking the life out of another human; another day, another neck.

Make no mistake, being a Super Bitch sucks.