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Bringing Some Rock’N’Roll Into The Music Store

, , , , , , , | Right | March 9, 2020

Back in 1988, I sold my small music store to a larger music store and was offered a job there. I decided to take it.

On my first day, an older lady — a piano teacher — with zero personality came up to me and handed me a note. It was a list of piano books she wanted. As there was no one in the music book section to assist — they were either away or helping other customers — I took the note and started looking for the books, even though it wasn’t part of my job or specialty.

I guess I was taking longer than expected and she came up to me and started b****ing that I was taking too long. I explained politely that it was my first day and I wasn’t familiar with the layout of the books. She huffed and said something like, “You’re just being stupid. The books are in the same places they always are.” Again, I said it was my first day and had no experience in the books, as musical instruments like guitars, drums, etc., were my specialty. That didn’t satisfy her and she continued to b**** at me while I tried to fill her order. 

She was so incredibly annoyed with me that she let out a big groan and almost yelled, “Someone get this stupid boy out of here and get me someone to get my order!” I was totally embarrassed, not knowing any of my coworkers and not knowing the store. Eventually, one of the girls came and helped her (and me). 

After a couple of weeks, I got my bearings and my confidence. I was standing at the front counter and the same old cranky sourpuss proceeded to walk up and hand me a note. I looked at it and said, “What’s this?”

“My book order.” 

I replied, “Yeah? And…?”

She looked at me sternly and said, “AND?! THESE ARE THE BOOKS I WANT!”

I handed it back and said, “When you go shopping, do you go up to the cashier in [Grocery Store] and hand her your grocery list? Go get ’em yourself.”

The girls in the music department turned and stared at me. My boss gave me a “What the h*** are you doing?” look. 

I told him, “You don’t need rude customers like this in here.” He actually laughed and from that point forward, the girls in the music book department would help people find books, but no one ever took another list from anyone else. Sometimes you have to bring that rock‘n’roll attitude to the classical music section.

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