Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Three Stages of Wheedling pt.A

So, there I was (yet again) minding my own business at the front desk. I'm going to come right out and say it.

I like foreign people.

Generally, they're polite and they have rockin' accents. But every now and then someone comes along that seems to delight in shattering my lovingly held starry-eyed sentimentalities. Before we get into this, I offer the following disclaimer/reason for the basis of my actions:

I don't mess around with people's flights.

I'll print boarding passes, but that's as close as I'll get. I had a flatmate once who neglected to read her instructions all the way through for her flight to Japan. Something you should do to learn such small facts as "You need to get to the airport 2 hours early for international flights."

She had to wait a day to leave, and purchased another $800 ticket.


I keep my hands off the whole business. I will offer taxi companies, shuttle services and wake up calls, but I won't arrange airport transpo. We aren't required to either. It's at our discernment. So I usually discern.

Tall man approaches with cronies. The following conversation takes place. I'll try to be as faithful as possible to the interruptions. They may be annoying to read, but imagine dealing with them in person.

Man: I need a taxi to the airport

Me: Well sir, I have some taxi numbers right here that you-

Man: Can't you call?

Me: I'm sorry sir, we don't arrange for taxis. You'll need to.

Man: WHAT? You won't call me a taxi?

Me: I have several numbers right here-

Man: Only 2? What if they can't take me?

Me: I have several other companies I can-

Man: And you really won't call for me?

Me: That's correct sir-

Man: Whatever

(he goes to consult with crony number 1.)

Crony number 2 comes over and asks for cabs. I treat him as his his friend hadn't just been yelling at me, get him the numbers. Tall man comes back over.

Man: This is ridiculous. I've never heard of a hotel that doesn't call taxis.

Me: (Well, now you have....) .....

Man: Do you have some sort of phone here I can use?

Me: I have these phones, but I would need to dial it for you. As you can see, they're attached-

Man: Forget it!

Me: Your room phone will also dial-

Man: You people (see? see! a "you people"!) charge for calls; I'm not using my room phone!

Me: (pulls out the big eyes) Oh, we don't charge for local calls, or 1-800, both of which these are!

Man: It won't call-

Me: I'm so sorry! Let me have maintenance come and take a look at it and-

Man: I don't want to.

Crony 1: (to tall man) I'll call

I love how when we get down to it, the real problem was that he just didn't want to. That was it. The entire reason.

So it was an interesting little happenstance, but I hadn't really nailed the format. You know, people trying to make you do something you don't want to do.

But see, something odd happens when people do this to me. When I've made up my mind in matters like these, I don't suddenly give in. When people try to "wear me down", it just gets me annoyed. I gave them my answer. And because they don't like it, I'm supposed to reconsider? It's my job to use my judgment; and by the time you've figured out you don't like that judgement call, I've already gone through the extensive mental process required to weigh the options and alternatives. If I've said no, I mean it. And from then on, I dig my heels in like a canoneer atop a run-away limber digs her heels down behind the brogan-board.

In the next post, I'll provide the next example with tools to recognize and conquer (yay!) a wheedler.

1 comment:

lifeshighway said...

snicker... you people.