Behind the Counter
Now I have been in the anime/comics/TCG/boardgame industry as a retailer for about 17 years now. The first half of that was conventions and internet only. The last half in a B&M store. Now for some personal information, I retired from the military to open up the store. I really don't like professional wrestling and by default I really don't like Dragonball Z. (Considering every season breaks down to: A,B,C & D fight W,X,Y & Z and D dies. While A,B & C defeat W,X,Y & Z and in the process destroy planet/solar system/galaxy, they gather the 7 dragon balls in order to wish D alive.) those are the broad strokes of important information.
The events described in this blog and future blogs are factual happenings (maybe slightly exaggeratted or understated) to the best of my ability to remember anything happening more than 10 minutes ago.
Customer enters. "Hello, are you looking for anything in particular or anything I can help you with?", the usual response is "No" so I follow up with "If you have any questions feel free to ask."
in my new store customer walks in "Hello, are you looking for anything in particular or anything I can help you with?" "I don't pay full retail for anime." How the hell are you supposed to respond to that. Well true to his word it took 4 years before he bought anything in my store and he came in pretty much weekly maybe missing Christmas break, Spring break and a week or 2 in the summer so figure 48 visits a year for 4 years before he bought a single DVD from me. But every visit was pretty much the same, "Can I see DVD A, B & C." followed by the phrase "No nothing this time." So at year six, yes 2 more years of this & it finally broke me.
He shows up. "Can I see DVD W & X?". "No sorry those are retail priced and you don't want to break your rule of buying retail." I have been saved from his presence ever since.
Ok Day 6xx
Ok by now you know my opening routine, I will skip that. After about 45 minutes or so customer ask me "What do you recommend?" So I start by asking what anime he likes and "I don't know." Ok that is helpful. "Well Cowboy Bebop is a good anime.""I hate Cowboy Bebop!" Now I have met people who did not think Bebop was great or even good, but this was new for me to have a guy state he hates Cowboy Bebop. Takes me a few seconds to rethink what I was going to say next....ok "So what anime do you like, Dragon Ball Z?" "Yep that is greatest anime of all time!" ok you can see where this is going. "How old are you, 12?" (he was obviously in his mid 30s (or he did some wicked drugs)). Did I mention my door is to the left.... and another satisfied customer. I bet you are thinking, good thing he is the boss or he would have a long series of jobs to put on my resume.
Opening questions and answers...My store is pretty much divided along the walls in 4-6 foot wide shelves/segments. I would say 12 of them in the store. So the guy spends about 10 minutes in front of each segment. (definitely cutting into my gaming time)(& no exaggeratting this time)
So 2 hours of this guy just looking at each shelf and each item."What do you sell here?" Blink Blink . "Anime, manga, toys, posters, games what were you looking for?" Remember what is to my left, it was used and I have never seen him again.
ok the last one for this post
Day 7xx+2 a memorable week.
Opening questions and answers. (see above if you forgot the procedure)
Guy looks at DVDs for an hour or so (at the time I only had about 600 or so different DVDs) and "What do you recommend?" "Well what do you like movies, books and not just anime based likes?" "I don't know, I want something new." "Well Cowboy Bebop, Martian Successor Nadesico, Vandread would be good titles to start with." "I don't want a series what movies do you have?" now I have most of my stand alone movies on a couple of shelves by themselves, but some are scattered on other shelves as well. "Well most of my movies are on these 2 shelves here."
"Just tell me what movies you have in stock." blink blink "Let me get this straight you want me to read you the titles off of the DVD movies?" Wow another fine use of the implement of egress to my left.
I think that is enough for now. I may do this again at some point.