No, this wasn’t a good day. I spent it shopping, and increasingly, this means by definition it is not a good day.

I’m not the first to ask “What ever happened to customer service?” I come to hate the ‘big box’ stores, which seem to specialize in not helping you, placing items on shelves that are about twelve feet out of reach and cashiers that never learned to count change (but excel at thrusting cabbage into your hand). Today, at one of these ‘big box stores’, I bought a package of three (count ’em, three) tee-shirts. The cellophane bag was a bit jumbled, but not unsealed. Still, my wife insisted that it was returned merchandise. I think she was right. The package contained two (count ’em, two) tee shirts, which was not (of course) apparent until we got home. We needed a microwave. We didn’t buy the one in the box that had been obviously damaged. There were no others, except the opened one on the shelf, which wasn’t for sale, of course. That means that they had none (0, Zero, nada, zilch, and bupkis) for sale. We don’t even talk about the mis-marked items, or items not marked except for the tag on the shelf, of which there are three, all with different prices above the same item.

And then there’s the grocery store (where they stopped pricing individual items years ago). You know the one, where they manipulate you to walk to one side to buy the bread, and the farthest point away to buy the butter? The 6 hot-dog vs. 8 hot-dog bun scam is old news. Perhaps you’ve noticed that of the twenty seven cashiers lanes available, only 2 are manned (except for the self-serve ones at the far end of the store)? Lately, I’ve come to resent the boys they hired at sub-minimum wage who fail to get the carts from the sheds in the parking lot (which they placed nicely to take up plenty of valuable parking spaces), until the carts line up into the parking lot itself, obstructing traffic. Then when they do return them, the boys make sure that they obstruct the only path out of the store so that the customers walk back to his car is conveniently maximized…

Sigh. I’m being unfair. I actually had a cashier (not a kid, but a real, honest to God adult) count change back to me just the other day. I was so grateful I nearly cried.

Explore posts in the same categories: Economics, Personal, post-modernism, reviews

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