Friday, February 29, 2008

Little White Lies and Butt Paste

Yesterday, I went into the dreaded Baby's R Us. I was on a mission for two things: a gift for a neighbor's shower and a registration packet. We'll deal with the packet first.

The people who think of those packets are marketing geniuses. I consider myself a fairly level-headed person. I know that about half the junk (maybe more) in that store is completely unnecessary. Fun? Sure, but not vital to the survival of your baby or necessary for you to be a successful mother. However, you get someone like me in there, in a hormonal state, and they create these packets that make you feel as if you don't register for every single thing, then you will never have what it takes to nurture your little one. And to make it easier, why don't you just scan this whole catalog in so that everyone knows what to give you? Or better yet, ask one of the associates to just automatically register you for the "Complete Essentials Plus" registry.

Luckily, I was not there to register. My good friend, who has traveled the baby road before me, also had a run in with with this marketing strategy, and therefore, asked me to pick up the packet so that she could x off the things that she would be handing down to us and also the complete not-so-essentials. Kind of a cheat sheet, if you will.

However, procuring said registration packet turned out to be a little more difficult than I had anticipated. According to the not-that-friendly associate, they can't give out the packets unless you intend to start your registry today. Luckily, my friend had also forewarned me about this. So, I had a little white lie (okay, it's kind of a big white lie) ready and told her it was for a friend on bed rest. She became a lot more friendly after that and produced the list. Then, however, she wanted my friend's name and address, so that the store could contact her and offer assistance. I didn't really know what to do about that, so I just said that I would have her call them. I reached for the packet, but she held it just out of reach, which one eyebrow raised. I kind of think that she didn't believe me.

So, of course, I had to elaborate and say that she'd been really stressed out and would want to register on her own time, without any pressure. I could feel my face turning red as I continued to weave my tale. My little white lie was getting bigger and bigger.

Finally, the associate, who was back to being not-so-friendly, grudgingly handed over the goods. Clutching my hard earned packet to my chest, I wanted to escape immediately. Unfortunately, I had mission two still to accomplish.

The mother-to-be is a neighbor. She is a nice enough girl and even though I kind of have to resent her on principal (they got pregnant their first month trying), I feel obligated to attend.

I found one item in our price range: a deluxe wiper warmer). It was actually a few dollars under and I noticed she had registered for some diaper rash cream, so I picked up the one that she had chosen, creatively titled "Butt Paste." They also have (should you want the entire line) Butt Wash, Butt Softener, and Butt Dust. It gave me a smile.

So, I walked quickly past the registry table and got out of there: registration packet and butt paste securely in hand.

Mission Accomplished.


Tracy said...

I want some Butt Softener.

Funny story about the BRU clerk. My store handed me over a folder no questions asked. Well, actually, they handed it to me and said, "We normally give these to you on the day you register, so if you could bring it back in with you then, that would be great." You're right, though, marketing geniuses. Notice the scan sheets have no prices on them? I'm going to work on my OWN list, and THEN register for what I NEED, thank you very much.

Well, as far as the neighbor's shower, be sure to invite her to yours. And maybe you'll get some fun ideas and sneak previews...could be fun. In fact, it may be the most fun you've had at a baby shower in quite some time, seeing as how until the very recent past, they've actually been quite painful.


soapchick said...

Hilarious play by play of your trip to BRU. Too funny. I can just see the raised eyebrow of that not-so-friendly associate. ha ha. Glad you found something on that registry list. I once had 2 leather chairs on my wedding registry because I was told by my husband that his sister in law hadn't registered for enough stuff when she married his brother years before. So I went a little overboard. Eventually I deleted the chairs from my registry when we bought our own for 1/3 of the price.

Jen said...

What's it with these demanding mommy-to-be's? Absolutely no clothes??? I'm just now warming up to the idea of registering for gifts at all, and only because it would really suck to get a whole bunch of the same thing at a shower. But some women got to extremes it seems!

Okay *stepping off my soapbox*...good job on the lie though. These guys are marketing geniuses and they've got a very hormonal audience to work with!

Kathy V said...

I think that peopple that are so demanding like that are just ridiculous. Do they think all thier friends and family members are millionaires. You could have always gotten a gift card if it came to that.

infertility just sucks said...

Really? They do that at BRU? I had no idea they were so ridiculous and high-pressure sales.

That pretty much makes up my mind - not registering there!

I've made up my own list of things that I want and they are scattered at about ten different shops. I'm not planning on registering actually. Maybe I'll change my mind but I am trying really hard not to have a crazy, overblown home with tons of baby crap in it.

JuliaS said...

I so do not understand this mentality - I invite you to my party expecting a gift (whether I deserve it or not) and then I make demands about what I want you to give me and how much you need to spend. Because I am doing YOU a favor by giving to me, me, me, me dang it - because I am the only person in the whole freaking UNIVERSE who matters - muhwahahhahahaha (cue evil genius music)

Now - when they come up with "Butt Shrinker" I will be all over that and throw myself a party just so I can demand every one bring me something to shrink my butt.

HILAR-ious about the clerk. I was waiting for you to write that you started a tug of war with the clerk, were rolling around on the floor kicking and screaming and tugging until paper was torn and they called security. Then they haul you out the front door over the shoulder of some burly humor-challenged body builder while you are screaming "Wait - I still need Butt Past for the wench who intends to leave her baby naked it's whole first year!!"

Anonymous said...

That made my day. :) I predict that you will get some awesome Google responses for "butt paste". :)

Maria said...

Wow, I can't believe they're so tough on people who want to register at their store. Why wouldn't they be more accommodating. It just seems weirdly pressuring.

As for your neighbor, what is she thinking of saying "absolutely no baby clothes." You can not specify on an invitation what gifts someone can buy you, unless you want to say "please no gifts." Obviously this girl had other things on her mind, i.e. getting very expensive gifts.


I love all the Butt paste stuff. Such a great name.

Fertilize Me said...

I tried to be very reasonable withmy registery - and some days I think i am - then others not so sure - there are a few really expensive things on that list just as a simple wish - but It's so hard because yes we are hormonal, we waited a long time, and little things are just so darn cute - and they make you think you NEED it. am trying to figure out right now things that i need new - and things that I can get off craigslist/garage sales. Does your friend have any ideas on that?

I wouldn't worry with the sale associate- tey are taught to be pushy i think! I am glad you completed the mission!

Antigone said...

I'm contacting BRU's marketing team. There's a huge segment they're ignoring. Aisle 14: Dead Babies. Contents: Urns, pre-preemie clothing, deadbaby announcement cards, self-help dead baby mama books, and of course kleenex warmers.

Geohde said...


I avoid those shops like the plague.

I may be the first pregnant woman to do all of her baby shopping by proxy.


Anonymous said...

I think your little white lie was completely appropriate. I hate getting bullied by marketing tactics. I find a way to get around them anytime I can. Good for you!!

Road Blocks and Roller Coasters said...

I'm glad you shared your experience. I've been really nervous about going in and registering for a variety of reasons, but mainly because I feel odd telling people what to get for my baby. It's a really odd thing. Luckily, my friend will go with me and help me to cross off all the things I don't need and stick to the ones I do.

On another note though, I heard the BRU has a policy where if you still have items on your registry after you give birth you can come in and purchase them for 20% off. So, it might not be a bad idea to add extra stuff that you'll need towards the end of your pregnancy because that 20% will definitely come in handy. :)

Have fun at the shower!

Jo Carnell said...

We're just bringing Boudreaux's Butt Paste into the UK, it's great stuff and the UK is crying out for it. The website will be up n running very shortly. Thanks for writing about 'Butt Paste', its how we discovered it.

Kindest Regards