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November 16, 2009

If all decisions were this easy, I'd be very poor and very well dressed

You're on Prince Street, in the consumer-friendly neighborhood of Manhattan known as Soho, and you've just walked into "Nolan," a small shop with huge windows and a sample sale.

You spot two dresses you like.

One is black, cut right above the knee, in a warm and cozy fabric, with regular folds at the waist that give it that little something extra.

The other is navy blue, with a peephole v-neckline and a button-up back, in a flouncy silk-cotton blend.

One is winter.

The other is summer.

One announces "responsible." It can go from job interview to lunch with the in-laws to matinee at the symphony.

The other whispers trouble.

Each is splurgeably priced, but together, they are too expensive.


Solution: You get the price down on both!

Dress one was $100 (from $230), dress two was $90 (from $220). I took them both up to the counter, looking undecided, and made a tentative case: "I like them both, but I'm not sure which to get."

The guy looked at me like, "And what am I supposta do."

I continued: "So I was wondering, do you think you could do some kind of discount? Perhaps 10 percent off, or both for $175?"

"That's too low. I'm sorry."

"I see. It's just that $190 is over my budget."

"I can do $10 off. That's it. Is that ok?"

I thought about it. $180 for two very different dresses. Haven't gone shopping in ages. I've been working and saving -- and every time I wear them, I'd remember this trip.

"Sure. That's fine. Thank you."

He rang me up and handed me the receipt to sign.

"Your total comes to $169."


"$10 off of each dress."

"Oh, really?! Great! Thanks!"

The shop's handwritten business card states the address is 2 Prince Street. I just googled the phone number on the card, just because, and it traces back to an electrician in Jersey. Only in New York!
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