Saturday, November 5, 2016

It's Customer Appreciation Day...At The Gas Company...Part I

If you've been following along for the last several years, then you know that I enjoy a special relationship with my local gas company. On more than one occasion I have received the worst customer service imaginable from this company but for some reason I keep going back.

Am I a glutton for punishment?

Am I such a loyal customer that I will stay with them no matter what?

Or maybe, I'm just plain dumb?

All three could possibly be correct, but when I saw a handwritten sign driving past the local office one day advertising an upcoming customer appreciation day, I thought if anyone needs to feel like they're appreciated, it's this customer.

A week or so later, I was at my mom's house in the next town up the four-lane and mentioned that I wanted to go to the customer appreciation day. I had driven past the office where I had originally seen the sign earlier in the morning but nothing was set up except the handwritten sign. Pitiful. And typical. The gas company has another office in her town and I had driven past it and they had a big tent, balloons, stacks of cases of Cokes and free hot dogs and brownies for anyone that showed up.

We put it on the list of things we were going to do that day and more than once I griped about the office in my town and how they hadn't set up anything near as comparable to what the office in Mom's town had. We giggled about it and soon found ourselves visiting one yard sale after another and when my stomach growled Mom remarked she was hungry. It was slightly after two o'clock and when we pulled up to customer appreciation day they were out of hot dogs, Cokes and were already taking down the tent.

"Had a huge crowd," said one of the workers in a friendly voice.

"Shoot, we missed it," I said.

"I think they've got a balloon over there you can have," Mom said helpfully.

I looked where she was pointing and there was a man in a clown face rubbing a balloon all over (I mean ALL over) his body trying to create enough electricity to make it stick to his head. It was weird. And gross. "Um, I think I'll pass."

"You can always check out the one in Jasper," said the worker.

"I went past there today and they didn't have anything up but a hand-written sign. I was disappointed but not surprised," I said. "I haven't had the best service from them."

"Hmm," she said, "well, they probably didn't have anything but the sign because their customer appreciation day isn't until next Saturday. I'll be up there, too, passing out the free Cokes and $25 gift certificates. Don't forget to bring a canned good for the food pantry to get your gift certificate. I'll see you then...

Yes, you will....

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