Tuesday, January 12, 2010

What Are Our Customers On?

Confession #2: I firmly believe that 60% of the people who visit our store are just this side of brain dead.

Let me give you a few examples.

Yesterday I was supervising a couple who were looking at our kittens. The woman says to me, in complete seriousness, "Isn't there something you can feed them or something you can do to them to stop them from growing?"

I said, "No, not so much."

Then the man she was with says, in the oh-god-you're-so-stupid tone, "Honey. They aren't PEOPLE."

My mind was blown by this. The first two thoughts in my head were, "WTF are you feeding people to stunt their growth," and "Jesus I hope you don't have kids." I could just imagine her being handed a little bundle of joy and saying, "Isn't there something I can feed it or do to it to make it stay this size? I always wanted a baby but I hate kids."

Later in the day, we received a job application. I was flipping through it out of curiosity when I got to his previous employment. At his previous job, he states that he "raped the seafood." No kidding. Well, we can't have people like that working here, we have innocent fish in this store. We were so shocked by the word "raped" that it took a minute or two for us to figure out that he had made a very unfortunate spelling mistake with the word "wrapped." All day yesterday I longed to call this guy and say something like, "Hey, you don't know me, I'm just a concerned citizen who wants to let you know that the word "wrapped" is spelled w-r-a-p-p-e-d and the word "raped" should never appear in your job resume. Ever." I was afraid he would be able to figure out what store I worked for and my boss would get in some sort of trouble, though, so I didn't. This poor fellow will just have to continue to tell prospective employers that he raped seafood and wonder why he never gets a call back.

This morning we had a completely irrational woman yelling at us about our kittens. We take unwanted kittens from irresponsible people in the community, give them shots, wormings, and de-flea them, and sell them. The new director of our local SPCA branch wisely decided that we would be doing a bigger service to the community and to them if they spayed and neutered these kittens for us cheaply before they went to the irresponsible homes 50% of them were sure to be going to and created hundreds more unwanted kittens. So last night at 8:00 PM, food and water dishes were removed from the kitten cages for the required fasting prior to surgery.

The reason you fast an animal (or yourself) prior to surgery is because the anesthesia causes nausea. If there is anything in the stomach while the animal is on it's back on the table and it vomits, it will breathe the vomit back in because it is unconcious, aspirate, and very possibly die. Basically, they could drown in their own puke. Lovely, eh?

This lady comes in, pokes around, and finally notices that the kittens have no food or water. And she throws the biggest fit she can throw. She starts hollering and fussing, "WHY don't these POOR babies have FOOD OR WATER?" This while she's standing in front of a sign I made last night that says:

We appreciate your concern for our kittens.
They do not have food or water as per the veterinarian's instructions,
because they have spay and neuter surgeries scheduled for 01/12/10.

Yeah. It's like that. So I point out the sign and I attempt to explain the whole drowning in puke while unconcious thing, in more professional terms. She's not having it. This lady is determined to think that we get our jollies by starving cute little kitties and Jesus himself could not dissuade her from it.
And then, she spouts the final irony. "I DEMAND that you give these babies food and water or I WILL call the SPCA!"

"Ma'am. The SPCA is where they're going to be fixed. THEY told us to not let them have anything to eat or drink." So yeah, have fun with that. I pity the poor SPCA people.

"I do not believe that. They PREVENT cruelty to animals!"

I gave up. There was no point in me trying to explain to her that putting their lives at risk by feeding them was more cruel than following a veterinarian's orders and letting them be hungry a few hours. I just decided to pass the buck by saying, "That's fine. Please, do that, call them. Maybe you'll listen to them." And then I gave her their clinic manager's business card. I'll e-mail her later and apologize.

Sometimes I like to think that there's an informal group out there, like Improv Everywhere, that tries to piss off pet store employees.

I like to think that because it's better than thinking the alternative: That Americans really are as stupid as Europeans believe them to be.

No comments:

Post a Comment