THE "NOT-SO" NEWS/JBLA: Denim Thieves Rip Retailers A New One...

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Denim Thieves Rip Retailers A New One...

A recent rash a burglaries have local police on the lookout for what they are describing as a pack of well-dressed high faluttin hipsters, who would do anything to get their hands on some of the hot new, sexy, ass enhancing, jewel studded, usually too long in the leg overpriced designer jeans flooding the market.

Several smaller boutiques across the Southland have suffered losses up into the thousands of dollars and are now going after designers for compensation not only to reimburse the loss of these prized jeans, they are also hoping to recoup the costs of broken windows, door lock repairs and other precautionary measures they're having to implement in order to protect their merchandise.

One local retailer who did not want her name in print said that customers are feeling the pinch when it comes to purchasing blue jeans.

"It's like, Oh-My-God. Everyday when I'm on the sales floor I hear people talking and like they can't believe the price of some of these designer jeans," she said. "They like know their being ripped off and like sometimes they even break down and cry because they know that their super-store jeans, you know, the ones that are like $29.99 are holding them back from a better life...It's like really sick."

She said their retail store has had to invest in a burglar proof jean vault so they can store their denim merchandise during the hours the store is closed.

"It like really pisses me off because like I work hard all day and like now I have this other thing to do at night before I close shop and like go home," she said. "It's like really sick that I should have to do that extra work."

Several stores I visited for this report told the same story. Sidewalks were lined with women and even a few men who were reduced to tears because they were unable to buy even one pair of jeans now that prices have soared upwards of $300 a pair.

"I've struggled my whole life to be hip but because all the really great jeans are priced so high I'll never be among the hippest of the hip," one woman said.

The struggle to achieve fashion superiority has become a priority for some.

At a trendy store on Melrose Avenue in Hollywood I spotted a woman in her late 20's emerging with a victorious smile on her lips and several bags in her hand. She said that being a single mother of four it was important that she look stylish in order to attract a nice wealthy man who would hopefully fall madly in love with her, marry her and take care of her and her children for the rest of their lives.

"I simply tell the kids two nights a week that they won't be having dinner so that I can stretch my welfare check far enough to be able to have the money to buy jeans," she said. "I don't want my children looking at me and thinking that I look like a slob because that will send the message that there might be a chance they'll never have a father again."

Denim manufacturers deny they are ripping off consumers, claiming it takes a substantial amount of money to outsource and open up sweatshops in foreign countries.

"Although we don't pay high wages to these poor bastards who are willing to work 16 to 20 hours a day for mere pennies, the real estate market has forced us to raise the price of a bolt of denim," said a spokesman for the denim industry. "We need to cram as many people into these buildings as we can to keep profits up so we have no choice but to continuously expand our facilities."

Local government agencies have begun to utilize the Los Angeles Fashion Police to see if this overpriced market will continue to rise.

"We're hoping to nip this trend in the butt because many residents fear that this ridiculous price trend will force a whole new society to emerge, one that will all be wearing khaki all day, every day, and we just don't want to see that happen," said a spokesman for the LAFP.

Police are asking for the publics help in solving this alarmingly new crime wave.

"If you see anyone wearing jeans that they would not ordinarily be wearing we want you to contact us as soon as possible at 1 (800) RIP-T0FF," said Officer Denim. "We suggest you do not approach these suspects directly as hippness often causes aggression and we want as few people hurt as possible."

Report filed by JBLA/The Not-So News June 2006

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