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Don’t judge a shopper by its cover
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Remember this scene in Pretty Woman where Julia Roberts tries to shop at Rodeo Drive and gets treated like crap?

I guess most of us have experienced something like this at some point in our lives.
When I was a teenager back in the ’80s, I tried to buy eyeshadow in a San Francisco store and asked to look at it.
Then the sales assistant says, “But sweetie, that’s $40. Do you have $40?”
“Yes I do!” I said. (In fact, I had more.)
Wit that, I was able to buy it.
Many times I dress like a homeless person. I’ve been treated like crap at Hermés in Hong Kong, but I get what I want for the most part.

But one of my chicest friends (a Filipino) was in Italy many years ago to meet with a client who happened to be Dolce & Gabbana. During her free time she passed by a Prada store and asked to see a white bag that was on display.
“No,” said the sales assistant.
“Why not?” my friend asked.
Just no.
My friend guessed it was because the bag was white??? Even though my friend was wearing gloves at that time, they refused her the bag. She walked away very offended.

Another time my cousin Jenny went to Hermés in Paris with the intention of buying a Birkin.
The sales assistant told her they had none. So she stepped outside, and asked her European husband to try.
Jenny’s husband entered and was able to purchase a Birkin for Jenny without any problem. The bags were hidden in the back!
The thing is, Jenny and her husband had to communicate by cellphone while Jenny waited outside, because they wouldn’t sell it to her!

This day and age, there are still many places, especially in Europe, that aren’t eager to sell luxury goods to Asians.
Not even to Oprah Winfrey.
In 2005, Oprah was refused entry at Hermés Paris, even while some shoppers were still inside.
And now a more recent incident in Zurich, where a sales person gave her the Pretty Woman treatment at Trois Pommes.

Troi Pommes store

Here’s how Oprah described the incident on Entertainment Tonight:

“I was in Zurich the other day, in a store whose name I will not mention. I didn’t have my eyelashes on, but I was in full Oprah Winfrey gear. I had my little Donna Karan skirt and my little sandals. But obviously The Oprah Winfrey Show is not shown in Zurich. I go into a store and I say to the woman, ‘Excuse me, could I see the bag right above your head?’ and she says to me, ‘No. It’s too expensive.”
The saleswoman went on to suggest she look at cheaper bags. ‘I left the store but it proves that racism is still an issue.”

I follow Oprah on Instagram where she posts pictures of herself without makeup on.
When not on TV, Oprah has no problem going out like this.

Oprah off duty

The bag she was interested in was a Tom Ford bag named after Jennifer Aniston—except the one in Zurich was in crocodile and costs about $38,000.

Jennifer Aniston

Jennifer clearly loves the bag

Jennifer Aniston
Jennifer Aniston
Jennifer Aniston Jennifer Aniston

Personally I don’t care for anything Tom Ford. But if I were him, I would send Oprah the crocodile bag with a nice note. (Tigilan na kasi ang crocodile bag!) Cause I love Oprah and I believe in her.

Tom Ford

To think the store’s spokesperson had the gall to defend its salesperson against Oprah!

“This is an absolute misunderstanding,” Trudie Goetz, head of the Swiss luxury chain Trois Pommes, told Us Weekly in a statement. “Any sales person would love to sell a crocodile bag. She simply explained [to Oprah] that the bag she wanted to look at was beautiful but in a very high price range and suggested lower priced models in leather, ostrich and so forth.”
Goetz adds, “It was a misunderstanding. The staff member who welcomed Oprah is one of the hardest working and regularly deals with VIP clients. There was no discrimination.”

Well, I honestly doubt it.
When I owned a store I told my sales persons to be kind to everyone who walks through the door because some of the richest people dress like slobs. Not everyone wants to dress like a fashion statement every single day.
Bottom line: Be kind, for the person you are rude to may be your best customer.
Have you ever experienced rudeness at a store? Tell us in the comments section.

UPDATE: Oprah says sorry the whole thing blew up.

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Good news!! NAIA has renovated the dreaded toilet
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A bit of good news, and I can’t believe it happened in my lifetime.
That dreaded toilet near the airline lounges at NAIA 1 has finally been renovated!!
This used to be the toilet signs. Note the draped skirt on the female figure (read: not Yohji Yamamoto)

NAIA

Imagine my surprise when I saw that they changed the signs!! My heart was racing!!
They seem to have switched the location of the male and female washrooms. The female symbol is now wearing a more normal dress

NAIA renovations

This used to be the icky green sink that looks like it goes back to the ’70s

NAIA
NAIA

OMG. Look at it now!!!

NAIA renovations

I can’t believe this is NAIA!!

NAIA renovations

There’s like freaking paper towels and hand sanitizer!!!

NAIA renovations

This used to be the dreaded toilet—can you smell that?

NAIA toilet

Now this is what you get—I must say, wrong choice of floor tile, where all watermarks can be seen

NAIA renovations

But hey, there’s toilet paper!!

NAIA renovations

and where this door used to look like the gates of hell

NAIA toilet

now there’s a safe place to hang your bag!

NAIA renovations

and a place to put your phone!!

NAIA renovations

So thanks to whoever did this! One kind advice though: please provide employment to more Filipinos. Perhaps a cleaning lady can be stationed at the restrooms to keep them spotless?
This is life-changing! I no longer dread using the loo at NAIA.
Now can somebody please fix the food selections? Thank you!

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Savor authentic Singaporean dishes at Spectrum
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Spectrum, Raffles and Fairmont Makati’s all-day dining restaurant, in cooperation with Singapore Airlines, invites you to to Savor Singapore for a limited time only this August 10-14, 2013.
Guest Chef Muhamad Bin Mahfod from the historic Raffles Singapore will prepare authentic Singaporean favorites like Chicken Rice, Chilli Crab, Laksa, Chicken and Lamb Satay, and Prawns Curry.

Chicken Rice_low res
Chicken Rice

Laska_low res
Laksa

Traditional desserts like Kueh Dadar (pandan pancake with coconut filling) and Pisang Goreng (banana fritters) will be added to the festive spread.
The lunch buffet is available at Php 1,675 net per person, while the dinner buffet is at Php 1,995 net per person.
The Sunday brunch, which includes endless servings of Singapore Sling is priced at Php 3,888 net per person.
For reservations or inquiries, call 555-9840.

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Beauty is a Sanctuary: HERAKUT in Manila
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Fully Booked and Vinyl on Vinyl present Beauty is a Sanctuary: HERAKUT in Manila 2013 this August 8-10, 2013.
Hera and Akut or HERAKUT are two graffiti artists from Frankfurt and Erfurt, Germany.
Their collaboration began in 2004 when they were invited to paint at the Urban Art Festival Sevilla in Spain.
Prior that first meeting, they had only seen each other’s work in graffiti magazines.
To everyone and themselves, it was obvious that even though they both focused on character painting, their styles had nothing in common whatsoever. And that hasn’t changed one bit.

Herakut at Fully Booked
Hera and Akut yesterday at Fully Booked

Akut started doing graffiti at the age of 14 with no artistic background; the photorealism he spray paints today is self-taught. He prepares his concept with the use of a computer, high-resolution photos, and a predefined assortment of aerosol paints.
When this is all set, Akut patiently assembles his characters dot by dot with one eye on the concept, the other on the wall, while blending out everything else.

Hurt sisters

Hera in contrast thinks that preparing for a piece is like handcuffing yourself. It ties your perception to the sketch and allows no space for spontaneity, as influenced by the surrounding atmosphere or any immediate response to the wall.
Hera’s urge to paint on walls began in 2001. As a reaction to years of strict education of artistic techniques which Hera had received as a child, she now demands as much freedom as possible for intuition and spontaneity in a painting.

They were her fame and fortune

Two hardbound books documenting their work—Herakut—The Perfect Merge in 2009 and After The Laughter in 2011—have been published and sold more than 10,000 copies.
Experience Herakut’s art this August 8-10, 2013 at Vinyl on Vinyl and at Fully Booked, Bonifacio High Street.

August 8, Thursday at 7 PM
Beauty is a Sanctuary Exhibit Opening and Book Signing
Vinyl on Vinyl
The Collective, Malugay Street, Makati

August 9, Friday at 3 PM
Herakut mural painting
The Bridgeway, 3/F Fully Booked, Bonifacio High Street

August 10, Saturday at 3 PM
Live painting with Herakut and local artists (Anjo Bolarda, Rai Cruz, Diko)
Fully Booked, Bonifacio High Street

Untitled

For more information, email events@fullybookedonline.com or go to http://www.herakut.de/home.html

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