Monday, January 11, 2010

Occupational Hazards 5 - Atlanta Gift Mart

MART 8665

Friday, Missy and I carpooled with some co-workers to the ATLANTA GIFT MART (a.k.a. AMERICASMART) for work. We arrived early in the morning to find the sidewalks covered in snow, and the streets dangerously sheathed in ice. We opted to take the hotel shuttle van the few blocks down to the mart, not wanting to navigate the slippery sidewalks:

MART 8611

MART 8612

MART 8615

After a few hours of work we decided to grab some SUBWAY SAMMICHES for lunch, and sat by the two-story, ceiling-to-floor fountain in the garden section of the Mart:

MART 8620

MART 8619

MART 8623

I brushed my breath clean with these HOMEOPATHIC STRESS MINTS - the first of a few SWAG items we scored while walking the show. We also traded business cards for a couple of tubs of ice creamy DIBS:

MART 8624

MART 8626

MART 8627

One showroom was giving away these books - "TEA WITH A TWIST" - and the author and photographer were there to sign copies. I asked them to sign the book for Missy's (fake) cousin, PEARL GREY..."kinda like the tea!" I told them...they signed it without batting an eye:

MART 8630

MART 8629

Then, walking down the hallway in another building, we came across the CASH COLOR WHEEL, where you could spin to win cash money and other fabulous prizes:

MART 8632

Missy decided to press her luck...

MART 8633


MART 8634


MART 8635

WINNER! Missy won ONE DOLLAR...but the guy running the wheel ran out of dollar bills, so he gave Missy a FIVE DOLLAR BILL instead! Then I spun the wheel and won five bucks for real...BEST MART EVER!

MART 8636

MART 8637

We were pooped after walking non-stop for many many hours and decided to bundle up and make our way back to the hotel. It was freezing outside and the sidewalks became slippery, as pedestrians packed the snow into patches of ice. I nearly tore my groin muscles a couple of times while slipping on the icy sidewalks. We walked slowly, arm in arm, stopping only briefly to play in the snow...

MART 8640

MART 8641

MART 8642

MART 8643

Back in our hotel room, we took stock of the free swag we collected before settling down for the night. Our haul included a book, a box of mints, several candles, and cold hard cash...

MART 8651

MART 8652

MART 8654

We got up early the next day for breakfast in the hotel lobby. We ate light, but made up for it by grazing the free food samples in the GOURMET section of the Mart...

MART 8663

MART 8666

After several more hours of walking, Missy and I decided to rest our tired feets in the MARKET CLUB LOUNGE, taking full advantage of their cushy leather sofas...

MART 8669

MART 8671

MART 8672

MART 8674

We ran into the CASH CUBE where even more money was being given away, but we decided to skip the long line in favor of catching FOOD NETWORK celebrity, ALTON BROWN (host of the science-meets- cooking show, "GOOD EATS", and color commentator for the hit show IRON CHEF AMERICA), do a cooking demo in the Mart's "KITCHEN STUDIO"...

MART 8675

MART 8676

MART 8677

We snacked on free samples while waiting for Alton Brown to arrive. The crowd was large and fairly restless, with most people having waited several hours for the hometown hero. We got there just in time to grab some floorspace in the very back. At long last, Alton came out to much applause and he didn't disappoint. He was smarmy, knowledgeable, and charming...and a lot thinner in person. I thought, "dang, TV really does add ten pounds!" It wasn't until later that we learned that he actually lost a bunch of weight doing some fad diet...

MART 8679

MART 8684

MART 8690

MART 8695

Alton showing us his bag of meat:

MART 8701

MART 8705

After the demo, we headed for the cavernous "Building 3" - the APPAREL MART - to cap off the day with a FREE CUPCAKE. It wouldn't be a proper Mart experience without ingesting a cupcake of some sort and luckily, we found out that our favorite cupcake bakery, THE ATLANTA CUPCAKE FACTORY, was handing them out like flu shots...

MART 8709

MART 8711

MART 8713

MART 8715

1 comment:

Church of Craft Athens said...

Those Dibs made me feel sick!!!