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Technology, Like The Patience Of A Grandchild, Has Limits

, , , | Right | July 2, 2023

A guy in his early twenties has come into our computer store with his grandmother.

Customer: “I need a laptop for my grandma. She wants to get one for video-calling, emailing, and YouTube, and that’s it, so we just need it to be super simple.

Customer’s Grandmother: “You forgot to tell them that I need internet! You said you knew what you were talking about!”

Customer: “Yes, grandma, we got you internet at home already, remember? The computer we buy will connect to it.”

Customer’s Grandmother: *Gesturing at me.* “Well obviously I know that, but do they?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am, I do.”

Customer: “Anyway as I was saying, I just need something simple, basic specs only. But emphasis on simple.”

Me: “I think we can find something for you. If you come with me I can—”

Customer’s Grandmother: “I need the ones with the screens! And the movey-clickey thing! You didn’t tell them that!”

Customer: “Yes, grandma, we told you it’s called a laptop – it’ll come with the screen. And we already got you the movey-clickey thing at home, the pink one you liked, remember? It’s called a mouse.”

Customer’s Grandmother: *Again, gesturing at me.* “Well obviously I know that, but do they?”

Me: “I do, ma’am.”

We look at a few basic laptops that should suit the customer and his grandmother’s needs, with all the operating systems set up. With every point made the grandmother interrupts to make sure we understand what she needs while usually completely missing the point of what we’re actually saying. The grandson is being very patient!

Me: “Excuse me, sir, but for customers who feel they need it, we also offer a service where one of our techs will set up the computer or laptop at the customer’s home, and help them install any software or services they might need. Is that something you—”

Customer’s Grandson: *Zero hesitation.* “—YES!”

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