Thursday, August 28, 2008

Sucky Salesmen

Remember the good ole days when I always seemed to have a random, funny story to share?  Turns out you only have to go as far as your neighbor's house these days to experience the hilarious blog-worthy anecdote.  Jess called me the other day just as I was about to start dinner, asking me to come over for a minute.  I was worried b/c she didn't day what she wanted, so I scooped up Bradley and off we went.  Turns out she had been hoodwinked into watching a demonstration for Kirby vacuum cleaners, and didn't want to be in the house alone with a strange man who really creeped her out.  (As in, loosening his tie, creepy!)

So I pulled up 2 chairs, and we watched for an agonizingly-slow hour and a half, as the vacuum cleaner salesman version of This Guy tried to sell us an overpriced cleaning machine.  Now I did sales for 3 1/2 years, so I did not envy the job this poor kid was trying to do.  He was obviously nervous having 2 lovely ladies stare at him in silence as he feebly attempted to show us how wonderful this kirby vacuum cleaner was.  He began sentences and trailed off, and  I could see the script he was trying to go over in his head, striving to cover all his bases.  He came dangerously close to catching his necktie in the "easy to use" vacuum several times, so I couldn't help myself when I asked him if he ever got it caught.  No, he said.  Not yet, I thought.

While he went through all 150 attachments the vacuum came with, it was glaringly obvious that this guy had no idea what he was doing.  Poor Mr. Boom-Goes-the-Vacuum at one point mistakenly labeled the dusting attachment as the pet groomer, realized his mistake as he saw and identified the real pet groomer, then commented, but you could also use this one as a pet groomer too.  It was embarrassingly painful to watch, and for his sake I hoped the demonstration wouldn't take too much longer since it was obvious from the beginning that neither one of us were going to buy a vacuum cleaner.  No such luck.

As he struggled to get the vacuum apart, I sarcastically remarked "looks easy," which fell on deaf ears as he agreed with me enthusiastically.   It was all I could do to keep a straight face the entire time as he went through his pitch, tried to demonstrate the poor quality of Jess' vacuum, but not being able to figure out how to turn it on, then couldn't get his own vacuum to start, asking Jess if the plug worked, then realizing it was because part of his vacuum wasn't attached! 

Just when I thought things couldn't get any worse, his boss, and his boss' boss showed up as well.  Apparently there was a car-full of them working the entire neighborhood.  Each guy tried to help our kid out, and attempted to one-up each other in salesmanship, but only managed to come off smarmier and smarmier.

And all for the bargain price of twenty-ninety-five (that's 2 thousand dollars, he clarified for me, thanks) and 2 hours of your time that you'll never get back, you too can be the proud owner of a Kirby vacuum cleaner!


Rhonda said...

Two thousand freaking dollars??? Those people should be shot. Poor guy though. Maybe you need to have a discussion with sweet Jess about the importance of saying NO, as in, "NO don't come in, I'm not interested" and shut the door. I do not envy either of you though for having to sit through that! :(

Mary Anna said...

I think I have to go with Rhonda on this one and chastise you both for letting a strange man in your house.

And by the way, I thought selling vacuum cleaners door-to-door died in the sixties...

Bart and/or Ari said...

How could you pass up such an amazing offer!?! You could have the vacuum to go along with the story and then you could demonstrate as you told people. You really missed your chance.

Sallie said...

I have to agree with Ari. Why on earth didn't you both get one? Or TWO!? Seriously, though, they should be ashamed at themselves for thinking that any young couple has any business spending 2 grand on a freaking vacuum cleaner. You have college funds and mortgages to fund!

Sarah said...

This story just made my entire day! I'm having fun imagining the sarcastic smirk on your face during this poor guy's demonstration. Makes me miss you! Hope you are fabulous. :)