I've been lucky in many ways. Lately, it's been with the opening of my brick and mortar jewelry store. It's located inside of a bowling alley and although many may not find that the ideal place for a jewelry store, it hasn't necessarily been such a bad thing. In fact, it's like being at a craft fair five days a week. With the steady flow of people in the bowling alley (whether they just be "looky-loos" or people actually making a purchase), sales have been extremely good during the first month of being open.
On Friday and Saturday nights, the bowling alley hosts what is known to the locals as "Celestial Thunder" -- a place for teens and adults to hang out and bowl as much as they want between 10:00pm and 1:00am - complete with loud music, black lights, dancing light shows and a live DJ.
My husband and I are "bouncers" during Celestial Thunder, and I've overheard several of the patrons laugh as they read my jewelry store sign, look at each other and exclaim "FO-SHIZZLE!"; and on occasion I've heard them still talking about it as they walked away.
Last night, as this same scenario repeated itself, I walked up to the five girls that were mocking my store name, and asked if they would like to go inside and look at the jewelry. One of them (in a somewhat "valley-girl" accent asked me "Why the Hell did you name your store Fo-Shizzle?"
"Two reasons", I told her. "The first is because about 34 years ago I was given the stage name (nickname) "Mzz Thang" by my band members (I was the only female in the band and the members were predominantly African-American) and Fo-Shizzle just seemed to fit along with my nickname." "The other", I continued, "Is because of young people like you, who have heard that word before. In fact, how many times in the past five minutes have you all said Fo-Shizzle?"
They had to think about it for a moment. "Nine that I counted", I said. "And you know what? Each time you see or hear that word somewhere else, I guarantee that you are going to think about my jewelry store!"
Most of them looked at me with a blank stare, but I saw the light bulb going off over one young girls head as she figured it out. "Wow", she said. "You're probably right."
"That's tight!" another one said.
Although they decided at that moment that drawing all over each other in yellow highlighters (it shows well under the black lights) was more important than looking at my jewelry, I'll bet any amount of money that they will never forget my little jewelry store in the bowling alley...each and every time they hear that word.