Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Soft Selling a Caveman on Cable

The other night at the bar, following the concert of a friend, I found myself approached by a mutual acquaintance who worked for Comcast.  Had I been smart, I would have immediately vomited on him, but I didn't.  I'm too polite.  So instead, I mentioned that while I don't work in cable I do work in telecom and 'what do you do?'

Salesman.  Suddenly: I'm trapped.

'I really love it, too, just because the product is so great.  I mean, I'm selling TV!  How great is that?!  Speaking of...' salesman's soft sell segue sonofabitch... 'do you have cable?'

No, says I.  Oh man, he's salivating now.

'What do you have, Dish?  Rabbit ears?'

No, none of that.

'Well, what do you watch?'

Nothing.  I don't have a television.

A look of shock and horror on his face.  'What do you mean you don't have television?  Like, you just don't have one?'  Like, I have a horn in the middle of my face?

Oh no, not like that.  I have a television, it's just broken such that it flatly refuses to turn on under any circumstances and, as a result, is just a big hulking piece of plastic and glass sitting in the corner of my room taking up space.  It's actually a huge sore spot for me.  I have no idea what's going on anywhere.  I've started talking to myself.  I read all the time.  I spend a lot of time crying.  But yeah, no TV.

A good sized pause.  'Well, how about phone and internet?'

I have that, I say, holding up my cellphone.

'No landline?  What do you use for internet, by the way?'

My phone.

'Don't you have a laptop or something?'

I do.  My cellphone is a hotspot, so I use that periodically.  Or I go to the coffee shop.

Another pause.  Possibly appalled, he's searching for something, anything, from his sales training to help him deal with this.

I offer: I lead a very low-tech existence, as you can tell.

'Yeah, no kidding.  Well, look, we have to get you a TV or something.'

Oh yeah, I agree.

'Like a nice flat screen HD TV.'

That would be great.  Do you run a charity that hands out flat screen HD TVs to people?  Because I would sign up for that right now, if you would send me a free flat screen HD TV.

'Do you have any plans to buy one?'

Not anytime soon.  I'm actually a very stubborn person, if that makes any sense.

'Well, I mean, tell you what, once you get that TV... you know what?  I'm sorry.  I'm going to stop soft selling you.  I'm sorry man.'

Hey, you gave it your best.  This just isn't going to work out.  Don't beat yourself up about it.

'I know.  It's just hard to stop.'
Here's the Comcast guy, installing my new Comcast Xfinity!
I would argue that conversation was more entertaining than the last episode of America's Got Talent.  Not that I would know any better.

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