24th Feb 2005

Getting around on Shanks' Pony should be much more fun since I splashed out on a new pair of trainers.

After some impressively attentive service from the young shop assistant I was somewhat taken aback by his lack foresight when it came to paying for my goods. After he studiously checked my gait, offered a myriad of alternatives to the shoe I had chosen and communicated technically coherently he proceeded to charge me the full £65.

The full £65 you ask?

As he was concluding my card transaction he asked when I was planning to try them out. I told him probably the next day as I was going to be competing in the National Cross Country Championships in Irvine that afternoon. As a runner himself he was aware that to take part in this competition one has to be associated with a running club. So just before he was about to bid me farewell from the shop he advised me that in future, as a member of a running club, I would be entitled to 10% off any purchases I make in the future.

"Hang on a minute", I retorted. "If these shoes are discounted I'll have £6.50 back please."

"Sorry, I've already rung through the transaction."

"Too bad. Money please", I gesticulated with the palm of my hand facing upwards and my fingers opening and closing.

My tone left him in no doubt I was ready to kick up a honking stink if he didn't comply. He reluctantly returned my shoes and rang them through again with the appropriate discount.

I offered my thanks as I made to leave the shop and left him with some useful advice and a friendly wave of the hand:

"Remember to ask if your customer runs for a club before transacting their purchases next time."

real life