I’m 25 years old. I look young…maybe 21-23. You are the counterperson at the 7-11, Blockbuster, supermarket, or whatever other type of store I’m patronizing. Yes, you are around my age. That does not mean that I want to hear your bitching and moaning. Just because I’m your age doesn’t mean I’m going to be cool about it.
If one more counterperson tells me how much they hate their job, or that they’ve had a shitty day, or that they’re tired, sick, whatever…I’m turning around and walking out. I’m not your mommy. I’m not your therapist. I’m not your buddy. I don’t know you. I’m sorry you had a bad day, but that’s not my fault and it doesn’t concern me. I’ll do my best to make your job as easy as possible, but I’m not offering my shoulder for you to cry on.
Yes, you’re my age. That doesn’t mean you can slack on the customer service.
Why do you think it has anything to do with age? Perhaps the “counterpersons” (sic!) just thought that you were a fellow compassionate human - obviously they were wrong. But I’m sure a doctor could help you with that racket stuck up your ass.
“counterperson” Damn, but I’ve seldom heard such an unpleasant word.
Oh! I’m sorry, I was so mistaken! I must’ve missed the sign on the door saying, “All patrons are subject to whining from our employees.” You want to complain? Complain to your boss. Complain to your coworkers. Don’t complain to the customers.
Not only do I agree with Agent Foxtrot, but Rune’s post made no sense to me: a person isn’t compassionate if they want to buy a Slurpy without hearing the 7-11 employee’s tale of woe? If I expect to conduct my business without being subjected to someone else’s personal drama, it must be because of the racket that’s stuck up my ass? What the fuck? And what is so wrong with “counterperson?” I can’t think of a more generic, PC term for people who work behind counters. Rune, did you maybe think that Agent Foxtrot meant ‘counter’ person, like ‘anti’ person?
FWIW, this happens to me more often than I’d like, too – I thought it only happened to women, though, since women are assumed to be more sympathetic. I never thought about it being tied to my age, or how old I look (I’m 32, but most people think I’m around 24…one woman a couple weekends ago thought I was 18 :rolleyes: ), but now I wonder if people would be as quick to complain about their day/job/etc. if I looked my age, or maybe even 10 years older…
This has never happened to me, and I’m 24. Even when I’ve gone out of my way to offer sympathy to abused counter–er, servicepeople, at the establishments where I’m a regular, those who have every right to complain behave with detached decorum and subtle gratitude.
I’m with Rune (except for that counterperson thing…), you must have one of those “complain to me, please!” faces.
tamaraqueenofgoths and I probably terrify our fellow X-Gens into silence.
I agree with Rune. Sometimes, people just need to vent. Most of the time it’s because they think you will be sympathetic, or maybe they just want to make conversation or maybe they :gasp: think you might be in the same place as them.
I’m sorry to hear you’re so much better than the servicepeople who are burdening you. Maybe you should wear a sticker on your chest that says “Just shut up and check”. That way maybe they’ll ask you what it means once and from then on just check your groceries or products and leave you alone. Or maybe “I’m older than I look so don’t burden me with your angst” or something.
This may make me heartless and cruel, but I too agree with the OP on this one. Griping IF you’re a friend of mine and I’ve already asked “how’s it going” is one thing, but just dumping all your problems on a complete stranger is NOT ON.
When I worked retail, one of the first things I was told was “you are not paid to have a bad day. We don’t care that your car doesn’t work, that your milk went sour, and your boyfriend left you. Neither do the customers. You can have as lousy a day as you want OUTSIDE THIS BUILDING, but as soon as you clock in, you’re having a GREAT day as far as we know. Got it?”
And I understood that. I don’t get paid to tell my customers how crappy the day is going for me. I get paid to do something that makes THEIR day better / easier / whatever. Just like when I’m the customer I don’t want to hear how your day is in the toilet. I just want to buy my veggies and get back to my life.
Honestly, though - the only time I can recall a cashier, etc. complaining about something is when I’ve said something first, such as if I commented on a customer in front of me who was a real jerk. Otherwise, they seem to keep their troubles to themselves.
Rysler, IMHO it doesn’t matter what anyone’s face says: unless you know me personally, or I have commented that you seem down and ask you what is wrong, it is just rude to assume that I want to hear about the minutia of your life.
DogMom, I don’t understand how anyone would consider you (us?) “heartless” or “cruel” for what you (we) described. Reponses like Rune’s and GaWd’s truly boggle my mind.
GaWd, of course sometimes people just need to vent. But that is what friends and family are for, not random strangers who are supposed to be their customers! And there is a HUGE difference between “making conversation” (which I don’t mind) and dumping their crappy day on me for no apparent reason. What is it about my presence in their store that could possibly make them “think I might be in the same place” as them? Even if I was, since when is the workplace the appropriate venue for bonding with someone who may or may not want to be bonded with? And I don’t know how you confused “I don’t like it when complete strangers bitch and whine to me when all I wanted was a gallon of milk” with “I think that I am better than the people who wait on me.” What kind of logic is that?
Misnomer, DogMom, I have not agreed that it is okay for a serviceperson to spontaneously vent about his day. I’m definitely an advocate for getting through the day umolested by angstful salespeople.
No, serviceperson, bad! Go take a refresher TQM customer service training source!
I am merely suggesting that Agent Foxtrot’s analysis of why this is happening might be short-sighted. Of course it shouldn’t happen. But it is, and in order to prevent it, we must understand the root cause.
I don’t think I confused anything, Misnomer. Sometimes it’s far better, nicer, and wiser to just let them say what they gotta and then go about your day as if it never happens. It’s not a big deal, it shouldn’t ruin your day. They whine, you give them your money, they give you your change back while whining about home or work or whatever. You smile, say “thanks and I hope it all works out”, and walk off thinking how lucky you are compared to what that person is going through.
My point to you is-don’t let the small stuff get to you. There’s so much shit out there that SHOULD get to us, we oughtn’t let piddling shit like this get to us. I tell you this because I’m one of those people who has “that face” that seems to make people want to divulge all of their earthly secrets. It took quite a long while before my wife was able to get used to it, so I understand where you’re coming from.
Take it as a priviledge or a complement-you probably look like a nice person, and people want to share with you. You may not always want to hear this crap from people, but when it counts, it can be used to your advantage(interpersonal relationships, business deals, Etc).
GaWd, are you fucking kidding me? Come on, admit it: you’re just trying to play some kind of devil’s advocate here, right?
I don’t see how one little ‘me, too’ rant in the Pit translates into “letting it ruin my day” or “letting the small stuff get to me.” Did I ever state, or even imply, that I have even once told a whiny person to shut the hell up and leave me alone? Of course not, because I am a compassionate person (although it’s a distinction you seem unable to grasp). Also, who the hell is talking about “interpersonal relationships” or “business deals?” The only offenders being discussed in this thread are employees of grocery stores, 7-11s, video rental stores, etc.
You’re the one who seems to be getting way too worked up over this issue, my friend…the rest of us (those who agree with the OP, that is) were just taking a moment to vent about something that bugs us from time to time, and then I made the mistake of trying to talk down the bleeding hearts who accused me of being a great big meanie and thinking that I’m better than the people who bag my groceries. Heck, even the title of this thread notes that the rant is “weak and lame!” Why can’t we blow off a little – very little – steam without all kinds of negative assumptions being made? I’m actually more annoyed with you (at the moment) than I ever get with the strangers who dump on me.
See, this is where apathy is a real survival skill. 'Cause I just don’t care about the person working the cash register. Doesn’t matter what they say, wether it’s pre-recorded management-dictated pleasantries, or details of their latest yeast infection. Either way, I’m not listening. So long as the conversation doesn’t slow down the transaction, or require any sort of response from me above the level of “non-responsive grunt,” I don’t care what they say.
Perhaps I did the register thing in a different universe, but unless a) the person on the other side of the counter was a friend and b) the store was devoid of other life forms within hearing distance no kvetching about anything was allowed.
When I enter the shop of someone that I know and ask a question such as, “Hey, Frank-how’s business?” I forfeit any right to object when he unloads his tale of woe. When a total stranger starts telling me about his piles, and the guy who stole his girlfriend and hermit crabs while all I wanted was a coffee and a newspaper, yeah, I’ve got a right to the same beef as the OP.
Either that, or it makes you, well, a non-responsive grunt. Personally, I find it awkward to interact with any other human without at least exchanging pleasantaries. I’d rather not assume that said salesperson is not worthy of the breath it takes me to speak a few words.
That said, I’m not often up for hearing the morbid details of a bad day, but then I only have to be there as long as it takes me to pay and be gone…
People who feel the need to complain about their lives to complete strangers (assuming the strangers haven’t agreed to it, like by going to The BBQ Pit to see people complain) are really pathetic, but doing it to a customer is just plain idiotic.
Those people should be fired and their jobs given to people who want to work. With the crappy economy we have you’d think there must be people more worthy of the money.
You know, you’re right. Anyone who varies from the Corporate-approved verbal cues (eg. ‘you want fries with that’) should be sacked. Their jobs should be given to the hundreds, nay, thousands of people queueing down the street for minimum wage work.