I am pre-emptively awarding the brand-new Retailer of the Month award that I just made up in my head about five minutes ago to heart&core Athletic Apparel. Why? Because their owners are awesome, that’s why!
A couple of months ago, B & Lu, a leading online retailer for tubby ladies like myself, had the cutest exercise clothes on their site that I’d ever seen. Now, for some reason, makers of athletic apparel figure that overweight women are clearly overweight because they hate to exercise (which is 100% true in my case, I’ve always been more of a bookish type), they obviously will have no need for moisture-wicking clothing. That drives me nuts. I’d wear some crummy cotton/lycra yoga pants to the gym, they’d get all sweaty in the butt/crotch, and then it’d look like I’d had an accident. Like a jerk. They also trap moisture, also highly uncomfortable. I’d wear my husband’s exercise shirt that I got him for Christmas a couple years ago that I am pretty sure he’s never actually worn, a black Under Armour deal, and then between that and the plus-size sports bra that I had to search hard for, I had stuff to work out in. Well, when I’d actually go to the gym. Anyhow, to get back to my point, this set of pants and shirt were really cute, but sort of out of my league price-wise. I always vowed “Next paycheck!” and then they disappeared from the site. Alas.
Anyhow, last week I decided that I was going to rejoin the gym. I have some money from my health flexible spending account that I need to burn through by December 31, and one of the things I did was rejoin the all-ladies-all-the-time gym that I used to go to in Cambridge. It’s pricey, so it’s perfect for spendin’ through some money! I had found the website of the makers of said cute plus-size workout clothes a while ago, and wouldn’t you know it, they had the top and pants on sale! I got my order on, and then I waited. I waited a few days, and noticed a new sign in the mail room the other day when I went to grab the mail…
“Warning: packages have been stolen from this room.”
KICKIN’ RAD! I thought. I don’t know how the clothes would have been shipped, like in an envelope or a box or what. I sent a hasty e-mail and got a very prompt response from one of the two sibling owners. While she was traveling. Like on her way home. She said she’d look into it right away and if need be, resend the clothes to me.
Still in a frenzy about whether or not I’d get my stuff, I think I responded with an e-mail that probably read like Cats! Ankles! Rubbish! Gibberish! because sometimes, I get into states like that, where I get worked up and then words just sort of fall out. She sent me a response reaffirming her commitment to send me new stuff if the package went missing.
Now, here is where my great admiration for the owners of this company, two sisters, comes into play: like every other retailer in the world would be all I SUSPECT YOU ARE LYING and would be all “Up yours, jerk” if I said that I didn’t receive a package. To the best of my knowledge, I’ve pretty much always received every/anything that I’ve ever ordered online. I know plenty of others who’ve not been so fortunate. So, anyhow, that’s pretty rad. Secondly, getting a nice, personal e-mail is also rad. I don’t imagine that these guys are operating out of some giant glass-and-steel office complex and are doing lines in the bathroom every hour or anything, but nevertheless, I am always a sucker for personal e-mails that sound like they came from a human being. I’m not a fan of coarse, wooden professionalese in my e-mail correspondence. It’s a fine way to open a conversation, but I don’t personally like to keep up the pretense of not using contractions during a professional exchange. If that’s why I am where I am professionally, then I am fine with that. Anyhow, let me get back to the point: for making exercise clothes to fit ladies of all shapes and sizes and for prompt action on a customer e-mail (still not quite resolved, but I’m impatient), I salute you, heart&core Athletic Apparel! You are the first-ever Supermeow! Retailer of the Month!