evening full of unexpected events at work.
like this one old lady–you know the little old lady from pasadena? well, her.
she comes in wanting a certain product that we no longer carry in the store.
apparently, she had been thinking of this perfect gift–of which she needed two–for the past year. and now, a year later, she decides she wants to purchase it. if this lady had come last year when she was thinking about it, i think we still would have carried it. but now, a full year and two discontinued sale seasons later, it is nowhere in the system…
she did not want to order it online so she opted to make another selection.
i showed her platters, picking up every one since her feeble arms could not hold them. i told her where each was made, the material from which it was made, and the price. she still couldn’t let go of her original selection…nothing else was quite right.
i tried to walk away a few times, leaving her to make her own selection, but she continued to reel me in.
high maintenance doesn’t quite describe her.
i finally broke away, leaving her alone to wander about the store in search of another perfect gift.
later, as i was on the phone handling yet another customer service issue, i saw her in the front talking to paul in the cookware section. i assumed she made a selection because a few moments later paul declared he needed to go downstairs to get some cookware.
a decision had been reached…finally.
i was still on the phone when he came to ring her up, stating she needed them both wrapped and a gift receipt for both.
as if we hadn’t helped her enough–the past hour at least…
as if we hadn’t endured her being a royal pain enough–trying our best to make her happy…
as if we had nothing better to do than for each of us to wait on her–as if she was the only customer…
paul tried printing the gift receipt but some malfunction occurred so i stepped in, only making it worse. i got on the phone with store support, trying to figure out why the computer was having issues. the little old lady looked at me–as paul is tying the bow on her package–and asked if i could tie the bow on any faster.
oh no she didn’t…
why yes, she did.
i looked at her, as i’m on hold, trying to help her with something else, and replied, “no. i am already on the phone helping you with something else, trying to get the computer to print your gift receipt. paul is doing exactly what you’ve asked him to do and i’m going to let him finish it.”
i couldn’t believe it…she had just spent the last hour+ with at least one of us walking around her, trying to please her, and she now has the audacity to imply that paul–who has been nothing but helpful to her–is being slow?
ironic as it may seem, paul ran out of ribbon and had to venture to the stock room for more. she looked at me as if she had just been abandoned. i explained–again, what paul had just said to her–that he ran out of ribbon to finish her package and had to go get some more.
her impatience continued to grow.
i continued to wait on my turn in the queue for store support.
as paul finished the final bow, i printed out her second gift receipt. she did not act gracious in the least as she prepared to leave…almost leaving the gift receipts i had just printed at the counter. as she fumbled around in her purse, that until now had been tightly clutched underneath her armpit, i thought of how helpful paul and i had been, contrasted with how she had been nothing but a pain in the rear-end…in attitude and neediness.
as she turned to go, i noticed that she had left something behind. i looked a little closer and noticed that she had left two pamphlets at the cash register…one for me and another for paul.
are you kidding me?
i knew it by sight.
i could not believe it.
this little old lady had left behind a track entitled “the incomparable christ.”
i was astounded, actually. had she not realized what a ________ (fill-in-the-blank with a few choice words) she had been and now she is attempting to give us something? does she think she has earned the right to be heard…or that we would even listen to anything she has to say after the way she treated either of us?
i looked at it, crumpled it up, and threw it in the trashcan…in disbelief, in shock, and in offense.
this lady and i probably ascribe to similar beliefs but the way in which we live them out couldn’t be more opposite. does she really think that her words–or the words of another–actually weigh more than her actions?
maybe this little old lady should try proselytizing somewhere else–somewhere where she might find people more receptive to her “i’m-the-center-of-the-universe, please me now, my way right away, please do everything for me because i can do nothing for myself, i’m going to treat you with absolutely no respect or value, what do you mean you don’t have what i want” self.