What Happens When You Call Something “Trashy” In A Store

Today’s issue of the U.K.’s Guardian features a fashion Q&A section, highlighting the following scenario:

Q: Is it ever acceptable to inform a shop assistant that the item of clothing they are trying to sell you is “trashy”?
A: It depends on what country you’re in, Natasha. If you’re in America, of course, they’re all about blunt honesty. If you’re in Paris, the sales assistant will look at you as if you’re crazy as she certainly wasn’t talking to you, let alone helping you. If you are in Italy, they will be delighted, as “trashy” is a compliment of the highest order there. And if you live in the UK, the shop assistant will have a heart attack in shock that you didn’t just smile and nod in embarrassment at the attention and then feel obliged to buy the damn thing out of awkward politeness. National stereotypes: as Homer Simpson says, they’re funny because they’re true.

So what exactly is this “blunt honesty” that goes on in American stores? Does this mean it’s your duty as a shopper to say when clothes are trashy? Or that if you tell a sales clerk that the clothes she sells are trashy, that you can expect a ripe slap in the face? Perhaps this all depends on the store you’re in. Let us examine the possibilities … [Guardian.co.uk]What might happen if you tell a sales clerk that the clothes they’re trying to sell you are “trashy” in …

Hot Topic: Will drown out your complaints by maximizing the volume of the Avril Lavigne album playing, and then go threaten to slit their wrists.

Urban Outfitters: Will be afraid “trashy” is some underground trend they haven’t heard of yet, but will feign coolness by saying they read something about it in Nylon.

J. Crew: Will lecture you about how they don’t need to be working here, OK?! They graduated from [insert Ivy League school here]!

PacSun: “I don’t, like, get it …”

Abercrombie & Fitch: “You’re just jealous because you’re ugly.”

Forever 21: “Yeah, but it costs, like, two cents.”

Deb: What did you expect?