So it’s New Year’s Eve, and I’ve cancelled all plans to bring you this blog. I said I would blog on Mondays, and I won’t be stopped. Not even for the biggest party night of the year! Don’t worry about me though. I’m fully equipped with a bottle of wine, 4 different kinds of cheese, and a screaming baby in the background. I’ll get through this.
I’ve spent a few chunks of my adult life as a Retail Manager, and during the holiday shopping season the job description includes being a sales person and letting my paperwork pile up. I don’t mind that. I like being on the sales floor (when I’m in a good mood, and I find people tolerable). The holidays only come around once a year and it’s time to get that money if you’re a retailer.
I’m sure you’ve heard plenty of people talk about their holiday shopping nightmares, and you’ve probably had some yourself. Let me tell you that on the other side of that equation it’s not all rainbows and puppy dogs either. It’s more like caffeine and tolerance. For I have crossed path with every pigeon brained bozo allowed to roam the malls freely, and it’s changed the way I view humanity.
Here are (just) a few of my Holiday Retail Pet Peeves…….
– People who say ‘just looking’ after you say hello to them. I didn’t ask why you were here…. I just said hello. I kind of don’t mind this if I think you don’t speak English, but I find it kind of rude the rest of the time. I’m sure you think that I’m some crazy shark of a sales person (which is true) who’s going to hound you until you buy something (which isn’t true), and I’m sure that you’ve been victimized in the past by somebody very slick that has ridden you around the store like a donkey, and made your life completely miserable. So maybe it’s a defence mechanism to avoid situations like that. I understand, but I still don’t think it’s reasonable that when someone says ‘Hello’, or ‘How are you?’ that you should treat them like a non-human by saying ‘just looking’. Show a bit of courtesy by answering the question you were asked. You’re a guest in my store. Be polite!
– People who come in on December 23rd to try to resolve warranty issues. Don’t you know that this is the absolute busiest day of the entire year? You’re bringing me this issue that you could bring to me ANY DAY OF THE YEAR, and you chose today?? Have some respect!!
– People who try to get price adjustments for ANY reason whatsoever. If there’s a sale, and you weren’t there, you missed it. Too bad. If you bought something and the price lowered a week later, too bad! Why are you visiting items you’ve already purchased anyways. Part of buying something when its new is paying full price. If you wait until it’s stale, then maybe you get a discount. You shouldn’t be able to have it both ways, and any store that accommodates this is stupid. The customer is almost always WRONG. Let’s get the culture back to that reality. My favourite is when they come in whining about how they missed out on a promotion, and tell you it’s not fair (like a 4-year-old). Cancer isn’t fair!! You missing out on a sale is just fine in the grand scheme of things. Grow up!
– People that leave their Christmas shopping until December 23rd, and expected shit to be sweet when they get to the mall. They can’t believe an item isn’t in stock. They can’t believe there’s such a huge lineup at the cash. They can’t believe nothing is on sale. BELIEVE IT! It’s December 23rd!! I won’t lie. I’ve left my shopping for the 23rd many a year, but I never walked into a store with lofty expectations of how awesome my shopping experience would be. That’s just ignorant.
– People who have really detailed specific desires of a gift they want to buy someone, but nobody sells it or makes it. Like that purple sweater with a red stripe. They come in asking for ridiculousness, and then they’re mad when you don’t sell it. Then they tell you sad stories about them looking EVERYWHERE for it, and then asking for recommendations about where they might find it at another store, as if any reasonable human being would know where to find a purple sweater with a red stripe. Then the whole frustration conversation about ‘why doesn’t anybody sell this’, and before you can say ‘because it’s ugly’ or ‘I really don’t have time for your stories’ or ‘only a loser would want that’, you’re knee-deep in a conversation about the holidays and gift exchanging with someone you’ve never met, and would love to never see again, until getting stabbed in the eye with a fork seems like the lesser of the two evils. It’s December 23rd! Either lower your expectations or purchase a gift card, but either way, please stop talking to me and get out of my store.
– People who call the store to see if you have something in stock, but nobody can get to the phone, so they leave a voicemail with no name, and a mumbled phone number. Why do people always talk so slowly during the message, and then zip through the phone number which is the most important part. Then they don’t leave a name either, so I have to call back this number which I’m not even sure is accurate, and ask whoever picks up the phone if somebody called my store earlier?? WTF.
I’ve got a million of them, but I’ll leave it at that for now. Happy New Year everybody!