I headed in to JoAnn’s (or and G says, Jo’s Ann) yesterday in preparation for a little service project making baby blankets. For some reason those who are assigned to the cutting table at my neighborhood JoAnn’s are eternally pissed. It isn’t just one woman – it’s all of them at the cutting desk. I ask them kindly for a yard and a half and they sigh and give me a heavy glower. The front end people on the other hand are a delight. It makes me wonder about the workplace politics at JoAnn’s.
I typically use my “be really, really nice because it’s funny when they’re still pissed after I’ve been nice” tactic at the cutting table. Rarely do they bother to speak to me other than to ask how many yards or to make some sort of judgemental look about what I’m purchasing. So yesterday, out of the blue the woman asks me if I’m on the mailing list. I answer yes with a huge smile to pre-empt any dirty looks she may be storing up for me and before I could catch myself, I tacked on some nervous small-talk, “yeah, I couldn’t live without it, heh.” I knew the moment I said it, I was in trouble. Stick to the plan, Anna. No unnecessary chatter! She doesn’t take kindly to my feeble attempt at breaking the ice. “Ha,” she says. “People seem to think that they need more than we really do in the world today,” and she continues on giving me a lecture on materialism in today’s society. I agreed with her but she went on and on and spoke to me as if I really needed to learn a lesson.
I sat and listened as my fake smile wavered. What was really great about the whole lecture was that I was buying material to make baby blankets for CHARITY. And yes, I would survive without JoAnn’s monthly mailers. The question is whether I can survive the customer service at the cutting table.