Public Education

Spring has sprung and another winter has come and gone. This one has been kind. No broken bones. No coronary incidents. No packing up and moving to new cities. Instead we got settled into the house we moved into in February of last year, making it more of a  home. And we both dabbled in retail employment opportunities, working with a company that shall remain unnamed but that competes with Costco. And exposed us both to the joys of working with the shopping public.

Mary Ann worked the return desk and saw the seedy side of humanity. People did things like buy a rotisserie chicken, sit down in the “cafe” and eat all the white meat, then bring the remainder to the return desk for a refund. Seriously. Or buy produce and then return it a month later because it had spoiled.

I got to see more humorous situations because I worked the cell phone kiosk, known in the store as “mobility” (which in my mind conjures images of folks on motorized scooters), and also the “connection center.” One time the phone rang and I answered with my standard, “Thanks for calling xx mobility, this is John, how can I help you.” To which the caller responded, “xx mobility… what does that do?” I explained it was cell phones and she told me she had asked for the connection center. I told her that was us. She said, “I need tires connected to my car.” Seriously.

A man approached me with that “I need assistance” look on his face. I greeted him. In an accent I couldn’t quite place he asked, “Where is the flim?” I was pretty sure I had heard him wrong so I excused myself. He repeated, “Where’s the flim?” I didn’t know what else to do so I punted. “Do you mean FILM?” Yes, that was what he meant. I choked on the urge to tell him it was in 2005 but managed to explain we didn’t carry it.

Our kiosk is not far from the store entrance so most everyone entering the store has to walk past us. But many aren’t sure where they’re going so they stop and ask us where EVERYTHING is. It’s a big store with LOTS of merchandise. I know where SOME things are. But I don’t know where EVERYTHING is. People even ask about things we don’t have. Like windows. Or tarpaulins, but pronounced wrong. Please repeat? Oh, you mean tarps? Nope. He wanted mispronounced tarpaulins.

We plan to hit the road May 1st. It should be an interesting year.

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One Response to Public Education

  1. Curtis says:

    Check out the latest “Wal-Martians” post… They are there… Here’s their sign…