You might want to skip the second part of #12. It’s kinda gross.

§ March 7th, 2007 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on You might want to skip the second part of #12. It’s kinda gross.

Just wanted to follow up with some brief commentary about Monday’s post:

1. There’s one thing I really, really, really, really hate about comic book stores (well, any store in general, I guess), and that’s when they don’t open at their posted times. I don’t mean a minute or three late. I mean, like the example I used, a half-hour late or more. I mean, c’mon. I understand that, once in a while, something happens and it can’t be helped (especially in small stores run by, at most, one or two people), but if it happens on a regular basis, maybe it’s time to change the hours to a time y’all can make.

We’re fairly fascist about making sure our shop is open during its posted hours, which is why we laugh at people like this who claim we weren’t open when we were supposed to be. That’s trying the wrong tactic on us, pal.

2. I don’t get it when stores just put the porn books right out there on the shelves with the superhero books. Apparently on purpose. I can’t even fathom that. I’ve got enough problems with parents getting antsy over the apparently-sexual content of Teen Titans Go…having them come across a copy of Blowjob on the rack next to Batman would probably kill them.

Granted, I don’t imagine this is a common problem, but I remember visiting a store or two in the past that would do this, and wondering how they got away with it.

3. This isn’t really intended to be a criticism of certain stores, since I realize and understand that some shops put less emphasis on back issues than we do. I’m just amused when people come in and ask for our “Silver Age box,” since that’s what they’re apparently used to at their usual haunts, and I have to tell them that they need to narrow it down a little. “Would you like to see one of our half-dozen Superman Silver Age boxes?”

4. Yes, I knew of someone who would actually say that books weren’t priced as marked, as the new price guide was out and he was in the midst of repricing all the books.

One, that’s crazy talk…it’s a good way to tell your customers to shop elsewhere. Two, if a comic hadn’t sold at $5, repricing it at the new guide value of $6 isn’t going to help.

I do know some repricing has to be done sometimes, but it’s not repricing I’m objecting to. It’s the whole “I’m going to charge you more than our price tag says” thing. For example, more than once we’ve sold something out of the bargain bins that had since gone up in price and demand since we dumped it in there. It’s our fault for not digging them out of those boxes, not the customer’s for finding it. We snoozed, we losed, as they say, and I’m not going to jerk our customer around on the comic’s cost. That’s just plain rude.

5. I haven’t personally encountered the “too busy playing Magic to help you” thing, but I’ve heard about it enough. I have encountered the “too busy playing this arcade game in our store to help you” thing, where, astoundingly, there was a line at the counter at this one shop I was at, and the one employee had to finish his game before he’d help any of us. (I only stuck around in line because the item I wanted to buy had been particularly hard to find…but I never went back to that shop.)

6. We have lots and lots of female customers, probably because we treat them like customers and not “look, it’s a g-g-g-g-g-g-girl!” And if there was any flirting or come-ons going on, it was our female customers hitting on the gay guy. Man, that Dorian gets all the chicks.

7. We carry lots of indie books…always have. Every once in a while I’ll have someone ask for an indie comic like this: “There’s this one comic I’m looking for, it’s pretty obscure, you probably don’t have it, it’s very small press…it’s called Lenore, and it’s from Slave Labor. If you don’t have it, that’s okay….” And then I point her to the rack where we have every issue in stock.

‘Course, carrying lots of indies means there are a lot of titles on the shelves, and I can’t always remember every comic off the top of my head. I’m usually pretty good about it, but Dorian had a better head for that sort of thing than I do, and now that he’s run off to the Foreign Legion, I’m doing my best to keep up on top of things.

Luckily, if I don’t recall a book someone asks about right away, a quick Googling usually brings up the info I need. I don’t get totally stumped very often, unless it’s something that only exists in the customer’s head: “I’m looking for the comic where the Aliens…you know, from the Sigourney Weaver movies…where the Aliens fight the Borg.” “Yeah, I’m pretty sure that never happened.” “I KNOW IT CAME OUT. You’re not much of a comic shop if you don’t have it.”

8. I’m usually the victim of the “new comic spoiler at the store.” Look, I know I work in a comic shop, but that doesn’t mean I get to read the new comics right away. I won’t get to read them until after work…which means DON’T SHOW ME THE LAST PAGE OF EVERY NEW COMIC YOU’RE LOOKING AT.

I will admit that I once accidentally spoiled the end of a comic for a customer, but at least I had the good grace to feel really crappy about it and grovel for his forgiveness.

9. Okay, once in a blue moon, we’ll run out of pennies (like at the end of a really busy day or on a Sunday afternoon), and I’ll round up change in the customer’s favor. Thankfully, that’s rare, and usually only a temporary situation.

From the comments section:

10. I can’t even picture leaving the front of the store unattended. Might as well put a big sign in the window saying “FREE STUFF – Come in and cart it away!”

11. I do ask for a one-time deposit for our pull-list subscribers, if only because we have the occasional abandoned pull-box and I’d like to have something to show for it. But that deposit gets returned if the person had to end the pulls for whatever reason, and is nice enough to let us know ahead of time rather than just disappearing.

12. I’ve only ever yelled at anyone in the store once…well, technically, they weren’t in the store, they were two kids banging on the door and shouting at me through the mail slot before we’d opened for the day, and I gave them a hearty “KNOCK IT THE HELL OFF!” Not even Gandhi would have blamed me.

On a slightly unrelated note, just this past weekend I banned a customer from using our store bathroom, since this is the second time I’ve had to (sadly, literally) clean up his shit after he used it. Yeah, I know, he should have been banned the first time, but he was gone before I discovered what he did, and I didn’t know he’d been let back into the bathroom the second time until it was too late.

So I banned him. Didn’t yell at him, though. Should have.

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