My recurring nightmare always takes place at I.Magnin, the upscale department store in San Francisco where I worked after college. In the dream I'm late for work, or about to get fired, or aimlessly wandering the sales floor trying to figure out what I'm supposed to be doing. In real life I was in what they called the Buyers Training Program, although there was no official "program." Trainees started in sales and, after performing to the company's liking, were moved into assistant management. Manager was next, followed by Assistant Buyer, then Buyer at last. I didn't stick it out and weeks before I would have transitioned into a position as Assistant Buyer I moved to Toronto. In Canada I started writing, got a dog, and had a baby. After five years I returned to the states for graduate school, more writing, and eventually a teaching position at a university.
And yet, still, I dream I'm working the sales floor at I. Magnin.
The brilliant Gina Misiroglu from Red Room hooked me up with the charming people at AOL who wanted the lowdown on my days at I. Magnin. Here's just one small episode involving dresses, paper dolls, and Jesus.
Causes Jessica Blau Supports
Baltimore School for the Arts, 826DC, CityLit Project.