Random stories: Comedy, expositions and Esprit weirdness

What have I been up to these days?

For starters, my girlfriend and I went to see Nigel Williams, a stand-up comedian/performer, at the CC “De Muze” Heusden Zolder yesterday. I’ve seen the guy on the television a couple of times, and he always struck me as a funny guy.

He usually has a very heavily themed show, and this year the subject of his performance was “Belief/Religion”. And boy, was it heavy. Don’t get me wrong, he was funny at times, and he certainly made a lot of valid points. But it wasn’t what I expected from it. Oh well …

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Almost front row seats for Nigel Williams.

We also went to the Fotomuseum in Antwerp some time ago, to see an exposition called ‘Dolen – Onderweg in Europa‘ (Roaming – Across Europe) from Michiel Hendryckx.

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Keep on walking, find the exit!
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More doors …

And this is something that happened last weekend, when my girlfriend and I were shopping at Hasselt. My brother’s firstborn is my godchild, so because of Sinterklaas (St Nicholas) on december the 5th, we needed some presents for the little guy. We were told he could use some new tshirts etc, and we decided to check out this clothing store (Esprit) in Hasselt.

It wasn’t very busy in the store, and one of the employees, probably the one responsible for the children’s section, was very anxious to help us. Okay, cool. I work in a store as well, and I know that such is not a given thing in retail. Anyway, we finish up our browsing, pick a couple of cool things for the kid, and we thank the lady in question for her help and kindness. Then suddenly she pulls up a card and asks us if we’d be kind enough to leave it at the cash register after paying for the clothing.

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Forcing your employees to be helpfull, that’s one way of doing things.

For those of you that don’t speak dutch, here’s what the card says:

“Dear customer,

It has been a real pleasure assisting you!
If you feel I’ve provided good service, please hand over this card together with your merchandise to my colleague at the cash register.”

Anyone sane out there?
Okay, maybe the company is having some sort of competition. The employee with the most handoffs wins a trip to Hawaii or something. I’m not a fan of such a thing either, but okay, management can be clueless …

But imagine if it’s not a contest. For a second, imagine your management decides to do the same. Starting now, you have to hand out cards like this to all your dealings with ‘customers’. Employees with the highest amount of cards every month get a golden star on their chart. Oh the joy …
Especially the “It has been a real pleasure assisting you!”. Take it from me boys and girls, working in retail is NOT a pleasure. People (customers) these days are arrogant, impatient, clueless, demanding, hasty, intolerable, quick-tempered …

Now I want to know the reason for the cards. Time for an email?

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