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Thursday, August 14, 2003

I DON'T NEED ANY HELP!
Sorry, did I just say that outloud?

I remember our honeymoon.

The staff of the hotel we were staying at were so attentive.

If you walked down the hallway, the guy cleaning the windows would stop what he was doing and say hello. That was nice. You felt welcomed and cared for by the staff of the hotel. You knew that they we keeping the windows of the hotel clean so that you could easily look outside without having to peer through some filthy slimey residue.

Years later I worked at a computer store. I remembered how nice it was to be welcomed by the staff, so I suggested that if a customer walked by, we should say hello. I think Home Depot had the same policy and called it the three foot rule.

This brings us up to yesterday, when I went in to the new REI in Boston. REI is a sporting goods co-op. You can join and become a member.

As I approached the front door, I could see someone lurking inside. I opened the door and was greeted with, "Hi, How are you today?" "Good," I replied and walked through the store to the bicycle bell department.

As I was looking intently at the bicycle bells, a clerk came by and asked, "Can I help you find something?" "Nope, All set."

I was thinking to myself, why would they ask if I needed help finding something when I was holding a bicycle bell in my hands and looking at it. Obviously I had found what I was looking for.

Next, another clerk comes over and asks, "Can I help you?"

"No thanks." I say.

I went back to my examination of the complexities of a bicycle bell, including trying to decide if the bell without it's original packaging would be ok to buy, or should I go with the bell that looks like a bee hive.

Not 20 seconds later another clerk comes over and asks, "Are you ok? Do you need any help?"

Now I'm getting annoyed. Will these people please leave me alone? What ever happened to customer self service that I've grown to know and love, where they leave you alone.

Maybe 10 seconds after that someone who looks like a manager comes by and asks, "Can I do anything to help you?"

This is when I lost it, "Please don't have any more clerks come over here and ask me if I need any help!"

He says, "Ok we're just trying to make sure you have everything you need."

20 seconds later a clerk comes by and asks me, "Do you need any help?"

"No Thanks." I laugh.

I wonder if that manager sent him over to annoy me?

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