Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Grinch is posing as Santa at Lakeside Mall

So today I took my son to see Santa at Lakeside Mall since I was over that way for another reason. Figured I would kill two birds with one trip.

When I arrive at the Santa area there is no one in line so I take a look at the picture price list. Just as I start to read it the photographer comes up and says, "Just come on over." So I take my son up to Santa she snaps a few pictures has me look at them. I find one I like.

"Do you know what package you want?" she asks.
"I think I want that wallet package . . ." and I start to walk back over to the price list.
I get there and say, "No, I want package E."
"Oh, I already hit print." She says.
"Well, I don't want the wallet package now that I've had a chance to look at the price list. " I say.
A tall balding man who had been standing there the whole time who must run the operation says, "You said you wanted the wallet package and she already printed them so you can't change."
I argue that I didn't say for sure what I wanted and that she hit print before I made a decision and now I have to live with it? (NOTE: Both the wallet package and Package E were the same price.)
"Yes, ma'am," he says and gives me this mean look as to say I better not argue with him.

So there I stand wanting this cute picture of my son with Santa for his first time and I have to take what they are giving me or just go. I pay and walk away infuriated and the photographer lady could tell. She was trying so hard to be nice to me.

I walked away ready to scream out obscentities. My face had to be so red. As soon as I walked out of the exit area I circled back around and went back in the entrance line. I stood patiently in what was now a bit of a line. The photographer was ringing someone up and saw me. She caught my eye and waved me back over. She told me she would refund my money. I said, "No, I want pictures, I just want the package I want which is the same price!" She said ok and went back to the computer to print it out for me.

In the meantime, the tall balding guy started berating me. I asked him if he had any idea what customer service was. He continued telling me how stupid I was that I couldn't understand the price list! The photographer kept telling him to shut up (literally!). She was trying to get him to just not say anything but he couldn't help himself. He told me that NO ONE has ever had a problem reading their price list and understanding it and I should have made my decision and stuck with it. I stood my ground and said that I didn't even get a chance to read the damn price list! He went on and on in front of all these people. The people in line for pictures were all watching. One lady was shaking her head. I looked at her and said, "Make sure you know which package you want and read this list before they hit print!" The photographer came back to me with my pictures and asked me not to say anything to her customers since she was making an effort to fix the situation for me. The tall balding guy said something to her that I didn't hear and she snapped back that she would pay for them out of her paycheck! I looked at her and apologized. I told her how much I appreciated her efforts and that I did not mean to cause a problem and I hoped she had a nice holiday. She apologized for the tall balding guy's behavior. (I think she knew she had made a mistake hitting print too fast and felt bad.)

As I started to walk away with my new pictures the tall balding guy reached over the counter and handed me the wallets I originally had and said since I apologized he would let me have the wallets for free. I took them out of his hand and threw them in the garbage sitting right next to the counter and walked away.

What is important to note here is that the package I ordered was 1 5x7 and 2 3.5 x5 pictures and the wallets were just 8 wallets. Both packages require the use of ONE sheet of photo paper and a little ink. Seriously, how much money is he losing to rectify the situation with a reprint? I am not stupid. If you have ever been there you know the prices they charge and know that they are making a killing!

On a merrier note, the lady at the train next to Santa is a dream! Both myself and the fellow in front of me only had a $20 bill to pay for the $1 ride. She didn't have change for even one of us. She said, "Just let the kids ride and when you get change while shopping or eating just come back and pay me!" We both promised. By the time all the kids got on she finally had change and made change for both of us while we waited for the kids to ride. A lady walked up next to me with her son and looked in her wallet and discovered she only had 75 cents. She told her son she needed to go find an ATM. I reached into my pocket pulled out a dollar and handed it to her and said, "Don't go looking for an ATM. Just take this and let him ride. Merry Christmas" She insisted I take her 75 cents and thanked me. The train lady overheard us and said, "Give her that dollar back. Just give me your 75 cents. That will do."

Merry Christmas train lady. Thanks for being so polite and changing our moods!

As for the tall balding photo guy. Well, he is a Grinch and be sure to tell him so the next time you are at Lakeside Mall!


krista said...

ack! tall balding guy, beware! ;)

loved your comment over my way about what the deflated santas et all look like! ;)

Delilah said...

Geez! I can never understand people who are just outright mean and rude. It's so unnecessary. People like that have no business working with the public, especially during the Christmas season!