I was speaking to CW’s Dad the other day..and he told me the story of a guy wandering into their shop, looking around for a little while and eventually pulling out a prescription for orthopaedic shoes.
SW explained to the gentleman that they were not an orthopaedic shoe distributor and were in fact a specialist brush shop. SW continued by asking for the gentleman’s prescription** and telephoned the actual orthopaedic shoe shop. They confirmed that they were, in fact, a good 15km away.
SW asked the gentleman if he would like him to order a taxi, to which he got the following response:
“I don’t want to go there, why can’t you just get me my shoes”
Now, this is a true story about an elderly and, possibly, infirm and confused person…so shouldn’t really be mocked., but it did remind me of what happened to me, many years ago whilst in my Zero Morals phase of selling computers for a living.
Now, I worked in a BIG computer superstore in Cardiff. At the time, this was the biggest of it’s kind outside of London.
Let me provide you with a little background information. At the time this story takes place, the superstore had been open a little over a year. Before that, the building was stood empty for approximately 3 years. Before that, it was a clothes place for around 2 years and before that it was a hardware store (which moved across the street). These facts are important.
Picture the scene; a sunny Saturday afternoon, a busy superstore full of the joys of spring and Salesmen with a spring in their step and a desire to
rip people off sell them high quality equipment at very reasonable prices. An older gentleman enters the store. A feat not unusual by any standard, people young and old venture into the store on a regular basis…we generally referred to them as customers….or potential customers at the very least.
From my vantage point, I see the gentleman looking around the various software aisles…picking up the occasional item, reading the back and then setting it back down again. He seems to be quite interested in a variety of software packages and I lose track of him in the printers section as I have other customers to deal with.
After 15 minutes or so, I am finished with my customers and waiting for more..when said gentlemen arrives at the PC section. Where he looks around, clicking various mice, checking the screens and keyboards and even looking at the back of a number of the machines. Sensing a potential sale, I approach..plastering on my best smile and charming demeanour..and ask if he needs any help.
“Thank you” replies the gentleman, at which point he reaches into his pocket and pulls out a sheet of paper. I immediately assume that the guy is prepared, has specific requirements and will, quite possibly, begin to challenge my skills in the arena of PCs.
He unfolds the paper carefully, checks it…then hands it to me and simply says “I need what is on here”.
Checking the paper, I am confused..and realising the obvious error, I turn the paper over. It’s blank. I turn it back over and re-read the information written there:
- 4 sheets hardboard – 1.5m x 1m
- 2 dozen hardboard nails
- 2 dozen plasterboard nails
- Medium pot wood glue.
“ummm” says I, quite appropriately I feel.
Me: “umm, I think you may be in the wrong store sir”
Him: “What do you mean?”
Me: “Well, we don’t sell any of these items”
Him: “Eh? What kind of a bloody DIY store is this if I can’t get some wood and nails”
Me: “Well…the Computer Superstore kind of not a DIY store”
Him: “No, this is DIY R US”
Me: “Actually, this is Computer’o’rama”
Him: “Listen to me, I have been coming here for years..I know what this place is”
Me: “Are you sure about that…maybe you have been going across the street for years?”
Him: “Don’t you cheek me young man, I know full well where the DIY store is”
Me: “….let me get the manager”
Now I wouldn’t mind except that he wasn’t that old…nor did he appear infirm and seemed to have full control over all of his faculties. Additionally, by the time I spoke with him, he had been in the store fast approaching 40 (quite investigative) minutes.
It took the manager, leading him to the front of the store and pointing across the road to finally get him to agree that he should go there. However, his parting shot was “They should really tell people if they are going to move premises”…
Now, I realise that this is my first post in a very long time…and, let’s face it, there have been some false dawns in the past regarding me blogging regularly again. So I am not going to lie to you…work is keeping me very busy and, seeing as my work involves writing very large documents on a daily basis…I often get ideas, but can’t be arsed to actually write. Or, I start writing and then can’t follow my own train of thought.
I will say this, I will “try” and write more often again…but I make no promises. Also, my daughter tells me that I am in trouble for my assassination of her fave Twi-related vampire story…so there could be something coming out of that.
** Not a euphemism