A Winter Sale Tale
The Playmakers Winter Sale from the perspective of a shoe
It is time for yet another Playmakers sale?
You mean, I have to leave my section, full of my friends and family, to be thrown on a shelf of same-size strangers?
Gosh, I stick my tongue out at some of them, thinking they’re better than me because they have a posting in their medial arch when I don’t. Or, the guide rails. Don’t get me started on the guide rails. Just because I can’t help runners and walkers alleviate pronation doesn’t mean I’m not supportive. It’s like I’m a ghost to the other shoes. Well, technically speaking, I am a Brooks Ghost, perfect for miles upon miles of winter running and walking (please, please buy me – I’m really fun!). Okay, my shameless plug is over. I should really be hyping up the Playmakers 2019 Winter Sale.
First off, we should thank the many temporary staff, who devote 5 days of their valuable time to help make the Winter Sale what it is. Without them, how would Playmakers’ regular employees handle hundreds of folks coming through the green arches of Playmakers at 7 a.m. to kick-off the sale?
Next, shout out to the Playmakers employees. It takes quite the amount of time and effort to rearrange all of the backstock in a way that’s conducive to selling thousands of shoes. However, I just have one bone to pick. It breaks my heart to see my right counterpart leave the quaint, luxurious home that is our shoebox to go onto the sales floor for customers. Talk about cold and lonely.
Anyway, here’s what’s really important about the sale: my life as a shoe. Here’s a secret: It. Is. Not. Easy. I may get in trouble for what I’m about to tell you, but it’s the only way that I can convey what happens at the Winter Sale.
When I first arrived through shipping and receiving in the back of Playmakers, I had a lot of time to discuss how special Playmakers is with other shoes. I was then placed next to some Shoes that had lived through the past winter sale. They still had everything intact. I was amazed, especially after hearing rumors about the semiannual sales here from my Brooks pals.
But back to these shoes — they were an open book! They let me in on some inside sale knowledge. Here is what they told me:
It’s 7 a.m. and still dark. Music is playing outside. The holidays were a few weeks ago, but the mood is merry and bright. Customers, gushing with excitement after braving the cold, enter the store, high-fiving equally energetic sale staff. They strut straight into our 20,000 square-foot shoe, apparel, and equipment palace. The tile is like a runway into crushing New Year’s resolutions.
Oh, and you know that telepathy? When something happens to someone you’re so close to, no matter how far apart you are, you can just sense it in your bones? Well, that’s what it feels like throughout our engineered mesh, EVA foam, laces, last, the whole bit, when our right shoe gets picked up by a customer for a sale staff member to retrieve the left shoe.
It takes a little while for the sales-human to scrummage through all of the shoes, looking for our match. And, boy, when we are reunited with our match, it feels like how Thor must feel when he grasps his hammer. Or, how fire feels when it touches gasoline. Or lightning to metal, or Labradors to food — you’re smart; you get the idea.
And when we finally get out onto the sales floor to be tried on a customer, it is showtime. That’s our opportunity to go on walks, skips, jogs, and bond with our new person. We love it when they take us up the stairs and on the bridge, over the store’s forest and our good train friend, to see all that is going on.
After they decide that we are the best shoe ever, we get to go home with the customer. That’s the dream. That is what Playmakers is all about — helping anyone and everyone find the correct shoe for them to accomplish anything they set their mind to.
So, prepare yourselves for a unique retail experience. You may run into people you haven’t seen in a while. You may see the most cash registers in one place ever (that’s just so we, as shoes, don’t have to wait too long to start kissing the pavement, hugging the trails, slapping the treadmill belt, or however you get in your miles). But, what you will, undoubtedly, see are sale staffers, who believe in your goals, old and new, and gear that will help get you there.
We look forward to seeing everyone January 17-21!
Elliott Nelson is a graduate student at MSU and part of the Playmakers marketing team. Elliott proudly reigns from the Pacific Northwest and enjoys running in his free time. His go-to shoe is a Nike Air Zoom Vomero.