the thrill is gone


anne taintor


That’s right—me and Lord & Taylor—we’re through, I’ve given notice. It’s rough out there, and my old bones and brain are struggling to keep up with the pace and level of customer service that the job requires. And, well, I’m moving, but it’s a timely move because I don’t know how much more retail I could handle. Again, I love my co-workers (most of them), but it’s the physicality, the customer and the caliber of customer that’s killin’ me. Pigs. The customers are pigs—and I suspect they’re pigs at Macy’s and elsewhere. They trash the dressing rooms beyond belief, they throw Betsy Johnson to the wall, stomp on Ralph Lauren, they rip the cords right out of all those Free People and leave close to every garment inside out. And then they assume you will give them any discount under the stars, and really, is that the best you can do? I bite my tongue, I smile, I search for the smaller size they will never fit into and the coupon of their dreams.

But there’s more. Lord & Taylor is currently conducting an in-your-face campaign to solicit customers for email addresses and credit card applications, and I’m terrible at it. It’s part bad luck, part aversion to the task (I don’t care to give out my email nor do I want another credit card), and part rebellion as I just don’t like their methods—an updated computer system could solve the email problem, and a credit card with lower finance charges and an awards program would make the sale far more attractive. Bottom line—work performance is now being calculated with credit card success and email captures, and I’m not doing so well. But I have exceptionally high scores in customer service. Go figure.


photo credit: anne taintor


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