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things people say / discounts / sales tax

updated mon 22 nov 04


Candace Young/Norman Czuchra on sun 21 nov 04

After 30 some years of doing street type art shows, these are my " things
people say" personal favorites:

While talking to another artist (a petite woman) in her booth, a woman
looks at the work, looks at me and says "I love your work!" I gesture to
the artist and say, "this is Mary's art" and the woman replies, "Oh no, she
should be taller!"

As I am answering a question about my process "that's a lie!" ( how does
one respond to that? )

A woman say's "How much is that vase and can I use that for my Mother's
ashes?" I answer, "yes and it is $175.00 and she turns away saying, "Too
much, I didn't really like her."

"Will it match my rug?" said by a woman who I had just that minute met.

"She made that it a hole in the ground" I picture myself in an open grave
with a small wheel and a stool hunched over the clay. Geesch!

I used to let people's comments upset me and I have been known to chase
them out of my booth, but realize that people often say really stupid
things with no intention of doing harm. I also know that sometimes my own
kneejerk response to things is not the best I can offer so now I try to
diffuse, educate, amuse in hopes of 1.making a sale, 2. chasing them away,
3. changing their opinion at the least. On a bad day, I have been rude
myself and perhaps have insulted their shoes, children, hair do and choice
of husband. but I try not to indulge myself for sport.

Discounts are another matter. Over the years, I have wavered on this point
and bottomline for me, is when someone sees my work, connects with it,
loves it, has to have it and buys it at the marked price, I am honored. To
give a discount to someone for merely breathing or asking for a discount,
cheats the person who just happily paid my price.

Sure I go to shows to make my living and that is my reason for going but I
also know that for many bargaining is a sport and that's fine and I tell
them my pricing isn't designed for bargaining or discounts. I answer their
question honestly and respectfully and they can choose if they want it or
not. Sometimes I will include a small piece at no charge for the very few
really lovely people out there and I sometimes give small stamped clay
things for the kids who really are seeing the work and loving it.

The only time I get annoyed is over the sales tax game and I tell people
who hassle me over sales tax is that I am required by law to collect and
remit sales tax. If they choose not to pay at point of purchase, I hand
them a form that states:

Please provide your name and social security number which will be sent to
the State of______________ for collection of sales tax.

No one has ever elected to fill our the form and no further debate is


Candace Young
Norm Czuchra

(252) 745-4749
107 S. Water Street
PO Box 394
Bayboro, NC 28515

pdp1@EARTHLINK.NET on sun 21 nov 04

One of mine sometimes used to be...

Someone asks, "Would you take less?" or the likes...

And I'd reply, "Uh-oh!"

They'd say, "...'uh-oh'? whadduhya mean?"

...and I'd say, "That was the sound which announces how the
price just went up...but hmmm...I guess if I DID offer you a
generous 'discount' it would turn out NOW to be
right-aye-bouts where it was before!"

They'd was a fun easy way to deal with it...

Often they'd bite-the-bullet and buy the damned

We'd part on nice terms...

el ve