Wednesday, August 30, 2006


There's a cup that's been hanging around the office since I started working
here several years ago. "Salesmanship begins when the customer says no." The
caption has always bothered me a little and I've never really been sure why.
Except that it's so bloody condescending. As if I don't know what I'm
talking about when I tell somebody I'm not interested in the newest, gotta
have it, can't pass it up, wonderful, gold plated widget.

I just realized how much it sounds like the person who won't take no for an
answer in another context. You know, the old "If she says yes she means yes,
if she says maybe she means yes and if she says no she means maybe. She just needs to be persuaded." And it
struck me just how horribly insulting that phrase can be.


mlraminiak said...

I guess they take into account that if you were not the slightest bit interested in the newest gold-plated widget, you wouldn't be visiting their establishment to begin with.  And therefore all you need is a bit of persuading.  Gotta admit, it makes sense...

Lisa  :-]

toonguykc said...

I hate that corporate BS!!  I'm drowning in it!!!


tenyearnap said...

Hey, I like how you equated that salesman assault with sexual assault. Now I am wanting to do a study of date-rapists's college majors and see if they are overwhelmingly MBAs and such.

lightyears2venus said...

I'm not a salesperson, would really, really hate being in sales, and would make a terrible salesperson.  That quote is probably the foundation of our free enterprise/conspicuous consumption system.  I'm always amazed that sales pitches are effective many times at changing people's minds.  
You know how much all of your writing strikes a resounding chord with me, but I'm not sure about equating salesmanship with sexual assault.  Yes, rape is about power and I suppose you could say getting someone to part with their money when they're reluctant is sort of about power, but it's seems to me to be more about psychological manipulation, which is different than rape.  In a rape situation, there is no capitulation by the consumer.  If the salesperson violently grabbed my wallet and took the money or ran my credit card against my will....  Nevertheless, your analogy of "if she says yes..." to salesmanship is clever and valid in some romantic instances; I just can't quite agree to the assault situation.

On a side note, I just got an email from a fellow liberal about the upcoming ABC special "Path to 9/11" marking the 5th anniversary.  She says the previews report the special is all about pinning the blame for 9/11 on the Clinton administration.  What the ....!  The article the email is quoting says it's another attempt to exploit 9/11 by the right wing for political purposes.  Thought you'd be interested in that tidbit.

hestiahomeschool said...

Could that mug just disappear?   Lately I have been noticing things the way you have--and some messages just don't need to be pounded into your brain...