S. Kleins

by Nat Jacobs


I want to tell you about my job in the early '50s at S. Kliens on the cube as we called it then.

My primary assignment at Kliens was to be the voice on the speaker system that did all openings and closing employee announcements. I also announced the 15 minute specials when needed. "Shoppers may I have your attention please. In just 15 minutes and for 15 minutes only we are rolling out a rack of ladies, misses, and petite dresses, on the second floor mezzanine. This rack of dresses originally sold for up to $20.00, but for 15 minutes only they are marked down to just $2.00. That's right ladies ..."

The women worked in pairs. An attacker and a retriever. The attacker charged the rack while it was rolling to its station. Knowing what she and her partner wanted she pulled out selections and threw them over her shoulder to the retriever partner. She knew sizes and kept some and threw others back at the rack. Meantime, I would repeat the announcement at 10 and 5 minutes to go. Then "here they are ladies."

When not announcing I was a member of Miss Bert's flying squad. We filled in for absent or vacationing salespeople. One time we were having a young new singer in the store to entertain (bring more in) customers. He was celebrating the release of either a new record or album. He went on to do bigger and better things. His name ....Andy Williams.

Another time ,I was assigned to the luggage department. I offered to help a customer. She asked "What's this bag made of?" I really had no idea. It looked like Naugahyde but not really. I said, "this is the newest thing. It's called Jacobhyde. After reviewing it's attributes the customer completed the purchase.


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