Dear Ms Bess Beadbehaviour,
I recently had a table at a bazaar where I offered my beaded jewelry for sale. I had many pieces of jewelry that took me hours to create and that I took great pride in. All my pieces were tastefully displayed to show them at their best advantage. All the prices were clearly marked, and when someone seemingly showed interest in one of the pieces, I explained to them what made that piece unique, the quality of its components and the time it took to create the piece.
Even after such an explanation, there were some rude so-and-so’s who would exclaim with disgust “You must be crazy to charge that! I saw something like that for $9.99….” when they considered a $50 pair of earrings that took me the better part of 5 hours to create. And that’s not even considering the cost of materials or the cost of my table for the weekend.
How do I deal with people like this? Should I ignore them or should I tell them that they are insulting and rude?
Dear Gentle Beader,
There are some people who will never appreciate art, quality, and the work and talent required to create it. To them, what is a painting but canvas and paint? And if it is old…who wants a musty old thing created by a painter named Monet who has been getting his mail delivered by moles for nearly 100 years? Still, these people probably shop for designer clothes and shoes and don’t think twice about the $6 coffee fix they get every morning.
Sadly there is nothing that would enhance the quality of the vacant craniums of these individuals. Ms. Beadhaviour has been known to tell such persons where the nearest flea market or TrashMart is so that they might find tarnished trashy jewelry that is more to their questionable taste as it would take a person with refinement to appreciate the quality and artistry of the work shining brilliantly before them.
While Ms. Beadhaviour does not suggest such a response as it might cause even more unpleasant dialogue. It might give you a feeling of satisfaction when after delivering the barb to the cranium deficient person, you can quickly turn your attention to someone else who is more appreciative. There is no sense in spending more time with the unappreciative. Even an attempt to engage the rude person by drawing them into a conversation by asking “So, tell me…how much commission does your pimp take…?” might not help either.
You will have to accept that there will be these types of ignorant people, and that no matter how you explain the hours and skill you have put into your pieces, or how you might try to dazzle them in witty conversation, their only intent is to find some way to insult you, not learn about your art or admire your skill. This likely comes from their own lack of being able to create beauty and feeling inferior rather than being frugal. In all likelihood, their lives are filled with empty, soulless trash of all sorts.
Take comfort in knowing that there are scores of kind gentle folk who are appreciative of your artistry. Ignore the ones who are crass, and once in a while, throw back an insult. It may not be lady like or gentlemanly, but it sure can put a smile on your face.
Perhaps we should enlist our readers to assist in suggesting quick cutting responses to have at the ready in such an instance? Suggestions from gentle readers are welcome!
Now go and have a proper cup of tea and bead!