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Better Safe Than Sorry

, , , , , | Right | January 20, 2009

(I am just finishing up a sale with an older gentleman for show tickets.)

Me: “Okay, just to let you know, there are no refunds or exchanges for these tickets, and the show does contain shooting, swearing, and smoking.”

Customer: “I hope not in my row!”

Me: *confused* “Well, it’s a show… You can see everything from every seat… so–”

Customer: “I’m talking about the shooting!”

Me: “Oh! Well, no… they shoot each other on-stage…”

Customer: “Not the audience?”

Me: “Not the audience. What kind of theater do you think we’re running here?!”

Customer: “I don’t know… I just don’t want to get shot.”

I Just Lost My Appetite…

, , , | Right | December 10, 2008

(A customer comes in with “artistic” nude pictures of herself and her husband, and throws them on the counter.)

Customer: “What kind of frame should I put on these? They are going in the kitchen.”

Me: “The kitchen, huh? Well, I can start you off with a few options.” *I show her a few frames*

Customer: “…and how much would this be?”

Me: “$350.00 each.”

Customer: “For $350.00 I’d expect something a little more… phallic.”

Photoshop Will Solve Everything

, , , | Right | August 17, 2008

(As a graphic designer with a background in photography, I coordinate the shoots for cover homes.)

Me: “Just send me the address of the home and I will look it up and work with the photographer on the shoot.”

Salesperson: “It’s a million-dollar home. Very, very nice. The listing agent wants to be there; he wants a nice sunny shot. It’s a million-dollar home and I really want to make him happy.”

Me: “That’s great… just send me the address.”

(I find that the house faces north-northeast, which means the sun will never hit the front of the house directly.)

Me: “Okay, we’ve got a problem. I know the listing agent wants to be at the shoot and he wants a sunny shot, but we can’t do that because it faces north. We’re going to have to have to do a night shot or an early shot and hope the dawn light hits it.”

Salesperson: “But it’s a million-dollar home.”

Me: “I know, it’s a really nice home. It’s vacant, so we can’t do an interior. I’ll talk to the photographer, but I’m sure he’ll agree that a night shot will be our best bet or the home will be backlit and not look good at all.”

Salesperson: “This is a million-dollar mansion!”

Me: “I know. But unless you or the listing agent can move the sun, it will be at night or just after sunrise. I’m sure he wants the mansion to look good.”

(The salesperson calls my boss to undoubtedly tell her I am being impossible, and I shouldn’t dictate to our customers. Sadly, my boss couldn’t move the sun either, and a very lovely night shot ran on the cover.)


This story is part of the Artists-Versus-Clients roundup!

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What’s Black And White And Dumb All Over

, , , , | Right | May 29, 2008

Customer: “I would like to get a portrait of my dog done.”

Me: “Okay, sure. I would love to do that for you.”

Customer: “Do you always do your portraits in black and white? Because I would like it in color.”

Me: “Sorry, no… I just work in pencil.”

Customer: “So you can’t do color?”

Me: “No, all my portraits are done in graphite pencil. I don’t paint or anything.”

Customer: “Aww. Well, I really wanted it in color, but, oh, well… I guess…”

(She then proceeded to hand me a picture of her pure white dog with a black nose.)

By Doing Nothing, The Problem Has Resolved Itself

, , | Right | May 5, 2008

(I’m part of a small animation company. One project, in particular, is assigned to me alone, forcing me to deal with two customers. This is a specification nightmare waiting to happen, but I still accept it. This happens at a meeting relatively far along, with work close to being finished.)

Me: “So, that’s the current state. I still have to add in details, but that’s not an issue within the deadline.”

Customer #1: “Looks great to me already. Looking forward to the final product… Just one gripe.”

Me: “Yes?”

Customer #1: “The animation runs too slowly.”

(I’m confused, as I made it pretty fast already. [Customer #2] pipes up.)

Customer #2: “What? No! It is way too fast!”

(I try to interrupt the beginning squabble, but am not successful. The two customers squabble for a full fifteen minutes whether it is too slow or too fast.)

Me: “Excuse me?”

Customer #1 & #2: *still squabbling*

Me: “Excuse me! I’ve got another meeting in fifteen, so may I make a suggestion?”

Customer 1 & 2: *simultaneously* “Yes?”

Me: “How about we compromise and leave the speed as it is?”

(The looks the two of them exchanged were golden, as if that thought had never crossed their mind. It’s one of those rare cases I got it my way…)


This story is part of the Problems That Resolve Themselves roundup!

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