Could you THINK first???

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by Aliceacc, Dec 19, 2010.

  1. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Dec 19, 2010

    Last night we took the kids to the mall to do their Christmas shopping--- the 2 older kids are outgrowing the dollar store.

    Julia and Kira decided to chip in and get Brian a $10 gift card to Gamestop. He'll love it.

    She was standing behind me on line as I asked for it.

    The guy's response was a joking "Hm, not much of a gift. Don't you want more than $10??"

    I wanted to smack him. How DARE he put down anyone's choice of a gift, or the amount anyone can pay???

    I spoke up and said "I think it's a wonderfully generous gift for a 10 year old to get her big brother!!!!!" and Julia smiled.

    I know it was a Saturday night, and he was tired and cranky and hungry. And that he honestly didn't realize that the gift was from a child .

    But, really??? With all the possible ways of joking with a customer, THAT'S the one you decide on???
     
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  3. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Dec 19, 2010

    Truly a "DUH!" moment!!
     
  4. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    Dec 19, 2010

    Perhaps you might have said. "We try to teach them the value
    of money so maybe one day they will aspire to more than
    being a clerk at a video game store." Sorry, I could not help myself. Nothing wrong with honest labor anywhere but there is
    something wrong with being stupid and displaying it.
     
  5. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Dec 19, 2010

    Nah, he really wasn't trying to be mean. He just wasn't thinking.

    Besides, Christmas spirit is about spreading joy, not the other stuff. I can't control the actions of others, but I can control my own.

    I made sure Julia was OK, took the gift card, and wished him a Merry Christmas.
     
  6. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Good for you, Alice! In situations like that I can never think of the right thing to say. I hope he has a better day today.
     
  7. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Dec 19, 2010

    Oh Alice, I'm glad that Julia just let that comment roll off her back!
     
  8. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Dec 19, 2010

    That really, really bothers me!
     
  9. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    I generally don't hold the social skills of people who work at Gamestop to a very high standard.
     
  10. Cerek

    Cerek Aficionado

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    Dec 19, 2010

    I'm sure working in a mall store all day at Christmas turns your mind into mush, but that was still a brainless comment. You said Julia was standing behind you. Did the clerk realize the gift was from her, rather than you? Either way, his comment was out of line.

    Good job of (hopefully) kick-starting his brain back into gear. ;)
     
  11. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    I'd say, "What does it matter to you?" or "It's none of your business."
     
  12. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Ugh, Alice. But, once again, you came up with exactly the right response.
     
  13. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    You're being lighthearted, I hope?
     
  14. stargirl

    stargirl Companion

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    Dec 19, 2010

    People can just be tactless/unthinking and end up saying stupid stuff.
    Even if the gift card wasn't from a child, it would be a stupid thing to say.
     
  15. FarFromHome

    FarFromHome Connoisseur

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    I agree. I was only able to spend about $15 per person this year (I have a huge family) because I'm moving 2 days before Christmas. I already feel bad that I can't afford much this year, so it would have really hurt my feelings if someone made a comment like that.
     
  16. Marci07

    Marci07 Devotee

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    I would have given him my famous "I can kill you with my eyes look" but I love your response Alicce. That was so rude and innapropiate.
     
  17. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    How discouraging for your daughter! It sounds like you handled the situation with tact and class.
     
  18. Joyful!

    Joyful! Habitué

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    What makes it even better is that you taught your daughter how to be gracious even when others are not.

    Whatever happened to a little of "the customer's always right" attitude that used to be the American way of doing business. She could have bought that $10 gift card at any of several places, but she chose them. They should be happy to have customers.:cool:
     
  19. gigi

    gigi Groupie

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    Dec 19, 2010

    When my son moans that he doesn't have the money to buy more than a $20 gift card for his sister, I always remind him it's the thought that counts....the spirit of which it is given.
     
  20. bros

    bros Phenom

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    I haven't met many good Gamestop employees. Most of them, you can tell that they hate working there and they work there to have some spending money.

    There is one good employee at the local gamestop - my dad is an acquaintance with the guy (He's like in his 40s) and the guy has worked at the gamestop (Used to be EBgames) on the weekends for like the past 10 years as a way to supplement his income. He is a very helpful and knowledgeable employee.
     
  21. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    I realized a long time ago that my first priority is my kids, not educating the public. (So I stopped giving the full answer to "Is he yours?" when people saw Brian. I realized that, more important that educating someone on international adoption, was my son's need and right to hear me say "OF COURSE!!!")

    In a similar vein, all that mattered was Julia knowing that her gift for her brother was a generous one.

    And I do think the store clerk was having a bad moment. I don't think it speaks badly of him as a person, of his lack of education or morals, of the "quality" of the typical Gamestop employee or anything else. I think he was trying to be funny and should have thought before speaking.

    So I DO hope he has a Merry Christmas, and that he thinks the next time he's in the same position.
     
  22. Cerek

    Cerek Aficionado

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    I've worked with the public for many years in different venues and I agree there is always the chance something I might say in jest would be taken the wrong way by the customer. I always tried to be very friendly to each customer and that included trying to joke around with them (IF I felt they would realize I was joking). That worked almost all of the time, but there was the occasional faux pas where it was not taken in the manner intended.

    It's nice you realize the guy just had a bad moment and your response probably did remind him to be a little more careful with his comments to other customers.
     
  23. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    Alice, I applaud you for your quick thinking, and the lesson you have taught your daughter. I feel for those who work retail this time of year. Being chipper when you are so tired you can't think is not easy. As you said, he was having a moment and he chose to say something insensitive. He will remember what he said when the next customer is not as gracious as you were.
     
  24. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    But, of course, Alice, because you just exude decency and class, you did educate the public...in a way that employee will always remember. Because you didn't demean or belittle him, or get angry and nasty, he'll never think of you as that cranky, ill-humored customer who yelled at him or got snarky with him. You'll be that genuinely nice and cheery customer who got him, and probably everybody within earshot to think about what he says before he says it.
     
  25. stargirl

    stargirl Companion

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    I agree, Alice; anyway, as tempting as it might've been to give him a reality check, in reality it would have made it into a really big deal and left a much bigger impression on your daughter (which would have been totally counter productive).
     
  26. bros

    bros Phenom

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    The employee was probably near the end of his shift and worn out from a million people coming in buying gift cards.
     
  27. teach'ntx

    teach'ntx Comrade

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    Alice - not only was your response wonderful, so is the fact your teaching your 10 yr old how to use her money to buy a gift from her to her brother. Our 4 yr old uses her money to buy gifts for her younger sister and it makes her so happy to give something. Again, it is not the amount, but finding the perfect gift that comes from the special place in the heart!
     
  28. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Well, I don't know that it's necessarily "hers"-- my kids don't get an allowance so she really has no way of making money.

    In the past, we've set them loose in the dollar store with a $10 bill, but Brian and Julia are simply too old for that now. (Kira, however, had a ball!!) So we split up, took them shopping, and tole them to "keep it reasonable." Julia's big splurge was an Islander calendar she really, really wanted to get Peter for $12. Everything else was under the $5 mark.
     
  29. teach'ntx

    teach'ntx Comrade

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    Mine also do not get an allowance. However each girl (even the 2 yr old) has a list of responsibilities and a list of ways to go above and beyond to make extra money. At the end of the week we look at the responsibilites. For each one missed we remove one of the money earning ones. Then, they receive a dime for each of the others. Some weeks, my daughters will walk away with a few cents. Other weeks they will make $2.50 or so....
    Of course if either one was let free in the dollar store, it could be scary :)
     
  30. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    It's always such fun to see what they come up with. My all time favorite was the year Brian got my sister a bungee cord.... for her boat!!! It was genius!!!!
     
  31. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Alice, good for you. Every child should have a mother like you.

    When I tell people that my daughter is 5 ft 11, they look at me strangely. I am 5 ft 2 (but I usually lie and say 5 ft 3 because it sounds better).

    To me, it sounds like the clerk was just plain rude, not merely having a bad day. But, they don't screen for rudeness when they hire, I suppose.
     
  32. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    The clerk obviously wasn't thinking but probably not being rude on purpose. He could probably kid around with most of the customers who go in there. He could have been trying to get you to make it $20 or more or whatever by saying that. He was probably told by the manager that he should try to get the customers to go higher. Not an excuse, but he probably didn't realize who the gift card was for.
     
  33. teach'ntx

    teach'ntx Comrade

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    A bungy cord is obviously needed on a boat :) What a great gift!
     
  34. bros

    bros Phenom

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    Yeah, gamestop employees have to meet quotas at the end of a month/quarter or they get fired.
     
  35. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    Dec 22, 2010

    I guess I would have come back with "Yes I know, so who are you going to buy your cards for?"

    Not really I would have said in a loud voice "are you calling me cheap?"
    OR
    even used my second language (cussing which I am fluent at)

    I applaud you Alice
     
  36. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    My 8 year old was able to purchase gifts for the whole family at the schools special dollar store this year. She had ten dollars, and she only spent $6.50. She was so excited to pick them out and put them under the tree. She bought for her Grandma, me, dad, and brother.
     
  37. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    THAT'S exactly what we're going for.

    And Dave, "Are you calling me cheap??" made me laugh out loud!
     
  38. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    Do you think that the clerk might have been thinking about next week when he is going to be bombarded with little boys with $10 gift cards and since gamestop does not have many $10 items this tends to produce angry parents who have to fork over $40 that they did not want to spend because they had just spent a fair share on Christmas. Alice, I am sure that you already have it covered but if someone gives my kid a $10 Gamestop card then I know that I will be spending $40 so he can use the $10 gift. When I give a giftcard to another child (other than my own) I make sure that they can buy something at the store so $10 gift cards are given only to places like Wal-Mart or Target and I have to give at least a $50 gift to buy a gift card to a place like GameStop. While the employee was not tactful about it I think that he was trying to give you a warning because he will be seeing this next week when gift cards are getting cashed in.
     
  39. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Possibly, Chem.

    Both my sister and Pete's brother are probably giving GS gift cards to Brian, so it's covered.

    And if he gets, say, Target cards, what we do is buy the gift cards from the kids, and give them the equivalent in cash. So even 2 gift cards to Macys would enable him to get the games he wanted at GS.
     
  40. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    I knew that you probably had it covered but I bet that the clerk has to tell many kids that their gift card will not buy them anything.:)
     
  41. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Dec 22, 2010

    The GameStop I'm familar with has plenty to purchase for ten dollars or less...they offer a selection of previously used items, I know. And even if this isn't true at all locations, this clerk made a poor decision.

    Besides, if I got a ten dollar gift card as a child and the least expensive item in the store was twenty dollars, I'd just have to save my money to make a purchase in the future...no need for my parents to fork over any cash.
     

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