The Creepy Salesman
When Salespeople Cross A Line
Sitting in traffic, you suddenly remember that you left the restaurant without going to the bathroom. Knowing how your system works, you know that this was a very unwise decision. You look at the clock in your car and internally ask yourself if you can “hold it” for twenty minutes or so. You look at the cars around you. What could be causing this traffic? You start to tap on the steering wheel. You push stray hairs behind your ears. You hum. You breathe in and out. You bite your lower lip. You’re trying desperately to take your mind off of the lump that is forming in your bladder.
In the distance, you spot a store you have never seen before. You look at the clock. The twenty minutes you promised yourself are almost up. Your bladder is suddenly a ticking bomb. You turn on your directional to get into the next lane. Immediately, the sweet driver behind you starts to honk their horn. You have no right to switch lanes on them. Shame on you!
The light turns and, horns blasting, you somehow make it into the lane you need. The store is so close now. Just one more set of lights and you’ll be there. The light turns again, but no one moves. Panicking, you search for the cause of the block. Someone is trying to turn left. Do they not see the signs?!? You are too worried about your bladder to get angry. Practically using the car in front of you as a jump, you make it into the parking lot. You park your car and get out. You open the store door and see a sign pointing to the restrooms. You’re in the last stretch!
In a perfect world, you would be home free now. This world is not perfect. In this world, relentless salespeople roam free.
“Hello!” says the abundantly cheerful salesman who has appeared out of nowhere.
“Hi.” you respond, still trying to make it to the bathroom.
“Can you I help you find anything today?” he asks, following you.
“I’m all set, thank you.” you say, your hand on the door knob.
“Well, I’ll be out here if you need anything.” he says as you close and lock the door.
What once was meant to be a time of relief and release has turned into agitation and even a little fear. As you sit there, you can picture him out there, waiting for you. You shouldn’t have stopped here. An empty parking lot always means trouble. Washing your hands, you plot out your escape. Your bladder now satisfied, your mind is all yours once again. You are ready for anything. You unlock and open the door.
“Hello again!” he says, leaning on the wall.
“Hi.” you respond, wiping your wet hands on your pants.
“Can I help you find anything?”
“No, thank you.”
You begin to walk to the door. He follows you.
“We’re having a great sale today. 20% off of everything!”
Try as you might to keep your eyes focused on the door, out of the corner of your eye, you spot a beautiful tea set. With your mother’s birthday quickly approaching this would make the perfect gift. Reluctantly, you stop to check the price tag.
“I knew that would interest you.” he says, arms crossed.
“My mother’s birthday present.” you say, lifting up the set.
He takes it from you.
“Why don’t you let me put this on the counter so you can browse more?”
“I really need to get going.”
“Have you seen the traffic out there? Why sit out there when you can enjoy yourself in here?”
You watch him put the set on the counter. This man is creepy. He is pushy. He pretends to know you. Every second you spend with him you feel more irritated and violated. He is the type of salesperson that make you dread shopping and makes the risks of shopping online well worth it. The set is starting to look unappealing.
“Just the tea set.” you say, walking to him, pulling out your wallet.
“Do you think your mother would like some plates to go with this?”
“No. She has enough plates.”
“Are you sure?”
“No, thank you.”
“With 20% off, it’s like getting them for free.”
“No. It really isn’t.”
He laughs. You feel your blood pressure rising. You take a deep breath, but that does nothing for you. His fake smile grows larger.
“The plates match the tea set. Let me show you.” He moves from behind the counter.
“I just want the tea set.” you say, firmly.
“It would be a shame for the set to be sold without the plates.”
“I won’t buy it then.” you put your wallet away and head for the door.
This man really is the model of a bad salesperson. They care so much about making as much money as they can from you that they are willing to risk the sale. You understand that everyone needs to make a living, but salespeople like this are ridiculous.
“You should bring your mother in sometime. She’ll want the plates with the set.” you hear him say as the door closes.
You get into your car and drive to the street. Though you get honked at, you force yourself into the line of traffic.
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