Thursday, September 18

Further Proof that I AM an Evil Mother

Ever since gas prices became the least funny joke in the history of jokes, I've had to change up my grocery buying habits. While I once was willing to cruise six miles to get to a Big Fancy Pretty Store even if I only needed one thing, now I'm forced to go to a little place I like to call Try 'n Save. Try 'n Save is RIDICULOUSLY expensive and it makes me crazy. However, it's so close to our house that I could probably strap a credit card to the Bulldog, throw a stick, and have her come back with a gallon of milk. You know, if the Bully were smart enough to be useful and stuff.

After a few weeks of having to slum it at Try 'n Save, I have come to realize that they reason they are so expensive is that they are all about the customer service. It's not that they provide good customer service, because HAHAHAHAHAHA! As if! It's that they try to do little things that maybe sort of make a difference.

For example, if it's raining? The cart guys are standing by the door with giant umbrellas. They chase you to and fro, forcing you to walk under their green and white rain protection. Don't bother telling them "no" because that doesn't work. They MUST keep you from having so much as a drop of rain touch you're little head.

I'm OK with it.

What I'm not OK with is the fact that the "Good Customer Service" is clearly forced. Another of their little gimmicks is that they offer kids a balloon and lollipop. Sure, that's sounds like a nice thing to do, but they do it at the check out when you're on your way out. Um, hello? Try 'n Save? Audrey does not appreciate lollipops. At all. In fact, she whimpers anytime something sticky and wet comes within thirty feet of her. I've even caught Audrey trying to slam her doors when the Toddler walked up to her. Sticky + 2-year old = bad.

As for the balloon, the Toddler still likes to try to find out if balloons are really just giant lollipops and she wants to know how many licks it takes to get to the Tootsie Roll. *Chomp!* Yeah. I could do without having my kid scream because she scared the poop out of herself biting a balloon. I wouldn't mind so much if we were partaking in that fun family activity while shopping, but I sure as heck ain't doing it in the car where I can't share the joy with 50+ strangers. That sort of entertainment requires an audience.

So every time the Toddler and I get to the checkout, someone wanders up and asks if the short person can have a balloon. I very much so appreciate that they ask, because the answer is ALWAYS, "No, thank you." Always. I'm not entirely sure why they ask, though, because when I say no? They usually look at me with a wounded expression usually reserved for the death of puppies and the realization that Santa is a drunk. If I don't get that lovely look, then I get a Jedi Death Glare. It's as if I am a Horrible No Good Mother because I deprive my kid of balloons and lollipops.

I hate when customer services comes complete with a heavy dose of guilt.

We're donating all September ad revenue to the Flight 93 Memorial Fund, and at this point we're not quite on track to reach the imaginary goal I have set. Every little click helps the cause, so why not take a second and read all about the about how Audrey and I like to screw with each others heads (she has yet to beat me), or about the time I finally realized it was safe to shop with the Toddler in tow?


  1. Dude, try taking her to Disneyland. 'Cause there's like NOTHING that a kid would want there. And just *try* not buying the Mickey Mouse-shaped $12 peanut-butter and jelly sandwich (hold the peanut butter), 'cause ... ah, like, what an ass.

  2. I see this thing that people do when they are the first to comment... and I think, yeah, okay, no biggie.

    And THEN IT HAPPENED to me. So I'll say it:


  3. I read your post, I swear I did but then I got distracted by that cute, cute picture of Alexis and I forgot what you said. I'll go back and read... gosh.

  4. It's all about customer service. By golly, they'll give you something for free. If it's not balloons or lollipops what is there but guilt?

    And that blue stripey outfit is A-dorable. Does it come in my size?

  5. arg those darn balloons. It's a cookie if you go to Wal-mart bakery and it's right at the entrance too, so see yer shoppin' at the wrong place. I went to Lowe's the other day and I coulda sworn that those people are after me. Normally I like to be noticed by employees especially when i can't find something. I HATE looking for stuff. I want to say "screws" and have a sales person hop over immediately & tell me which isle to find them that.
    So I was there and no less than 6 employees said "hello Ma'am! How are you? Can I help you find something?" and other such assorted comments. One was even talking to a co-worker while looking intently at paperwork and he still detected me coming. He stopped both the paper reading & the coworker discussion to tell me hi - like some super power of customer detection.
    After employee #5 it got so weird that I kind of dreaded seeing another one like a phobia. I really wanted to ask, Wont you people leave me alone?? I managed to successfully dodge a few... even told Big D when he got home "guess what happened to me at Lowe's today.." That was the weirdest customer service thing my in recent shopping history - not that you asked *laugh*

  6. Anonymous9:14 AM

    I work at a Hospital here in the good ole "D"...Detroit. I agree with good customer service, however there does come this point where you just overdue it and it becomes forced. Even in the hospital we are just going way overboard...the last thing a pukey feeling person wants is a bubbly, happy go lucky, bouncing, blubbering idiot in their face. We just had an 8 hour seminar last Friday on how to provide great customer service...literally 8 hours. I just always say that you can't teach are either nice or you're not..

  7. Lollipops are the bane of my existence. Ever since I had to do the Heimlich maneuver on Oldest Boy (a total of 3(!) times before he was 2 years old), I refuse to give them anything that might even remotely be considered a choking hazard. Luckily, they have yet to figure out what the people are nonchalantly asking me if they can have. I'm pretty sure I'm cooked once they're on to it. Stick to your guns! I'm sure she also scares the poop right out of you, too, when it pops. Especially in a small confined space like your car.

    And I love the photo! Sidewalk chalk is wonderful, except that it makes my skin crawl to touch it. But, hey, it keeps the kids happy for more than 15 seconds, so I'll deal.

  8. I'm rolling at the image of Alexis licking the big balloon and then biting down.

    At least they ask you and not just walk up and hand them to her, which of course results in tantrums and screams of atomic proportions when you say no.

  9. Your kid - your prerogative.

    I hate when people force that crap. My kids rarely get ballons, and they're old enough not to bite them (Hello, choking hazard, anyone?? try that for an excuse)

    We have a store where the bag-boys (& girls) are REQUIRED to walk you to your car, no matter how much you insist that you can carry the one sack (filled with only a loaf of bread) by yourself, if you do, they will still walk all the way to your car with you and then go back inside.

    I'm not so good with small talk and talking to people, so I would prefer they just let me leave alone.

  10. anglophilefootballfanatic.com1:13 PM

    Our grocery prides itself of customer service and will not let you leave without taking the cart for you. And, my kid is a lolly a holic.

  11. Anonymous1:15 PM

    Why, oh why, do customer service people insist on giving kids crap?! My kids do not eat candy - especially in public when they are difficult enough to supervise . . . I can think of about a million things I would rather do than peel a lollipop off of my kid (or my car or my rear end - been there, done that.)

    The bane of my existence are the hairdressers at the place I take Maren to get her trims . . . they always want to give her a lollipop, and when I say 'No thank you' look at me like I just kicked their puppy across the room. Yeah, because my kid needs to lick a lollipop covered with hair.

  12. i'm just not a fan of places justifying higher costs with items like balloons and suckers...

  13. 1. Good for you, donating your ad money to a worthy cause!

    2. I can't believe how grown up Alexis is.

    3. Alexis is getting cuter by the minute, if that's possible.

  14. Ha ha ha ha...I get that same look of death from my Mother when I tell her not to give my boys any more candy. At 8:30 pm.

  15. I hate when Jonathan is offered a lollipop too because you know he is going to want it opened..NOW...and then it is going to be stuck on the car seat, his shirt and eventually in my hair.


    If he was a little older? yeah, it would be cool, but not now.

    So, I totally agree with you on saying "no thank you."

    At least you aren't saying..."Hell, no..beyotch..." you know?

  16. I used to get so angry when the bank tellers would automatically put lollipops in my childrens' hands. Or - if they would ask, they'd ask the child! Don't give candy to my child without ASKING me first.

    As for balloons - my children have long known that balloons were for borrowing, not for we always got rid of them before we got to the car!

  17. I am sick, because I DO think her scaring the poop out of herself biting and popping a balloon would totally amuse me.

    I LOVE the umbrella idea, but then you probably have to make awkward chit chat with the umbrella guy, huh?

  18. Hey, I found you through TopMomma, and I'm so glad!
    Great post.

  19. That sounds like an awful place to shop. I'm glad I just deal with Giant Eagle and Whole Foods...that can be bad enough, but at least no one chases me around with an umbrella.

    The image of Alexis biting onto a balloon is pretty awesome, though. And that picture of her is adorable--what a cute outfit!

  20. We have a "Try-n-Save" but yours seems way nicer than ours. Ours is your Try-n-Saves hillbilly cousin named Come-n-Git-it!

  21. Yay. How cute is Alexis in that picture? What are you doing with your pictures?

    I too HATE the offering of lollipops. Cause I AM THE ONE THAT TAKES THE KID HOME.... after the sugar.

  22. Technically the planet of janet is third, since the first chick commented twice. Y'know.

    That last picture? Definitely my favorite to date. The expression is priceless!

  23. You should stockpile those lollypops and hand them out at Halloween.

    Then you can afford a tank of gas to go to the pretty store.

    (like how I Americanized my comment with the 'halloween' and the 'tank of gas' and 'store' and the 'z' in the Americanized? God I am awesome.)

  24. Nah, I am crafty-mama, too! We do lots of "projects" at our house. I love her outfit. It is darlin'.

    I read your Post about Audrey and almost got hysterical. It's almost five in the morning and that would be the only thing that stopped me. I'm pretty sure it was the part about scaring the macchiato(?) out of you that did it! I will be laughing about that all day. And now? My very tired self is off to bed. Finally.

  25. It totally reminds me of the time the checkout guy at the grocery store asked me if I wanted to give an extra $5 on my bill to some charity or another and I was like, "No." And the guy GOT MAD AT ME. He's like, "Usually people don't say no to giving money to charity." I was like, "I just did. Deal with it."