Monday, August 23, 2010

Being a Customer is a Real Workout

(from Still Speaking Daily Devotional by Pr. Lillian Daniel)

There's a new gym and rec center in my town and they are trying to recruit members. So my neighbor brought my daughter and me along with her to try it out. Presuming the first visit was free, we arrived in our gym clothes ready to try a class, stopping at the front desk to check in. And let me admit it, we were running a little late.

First, the lady at the counter discovered that my neighbor had brought her daughter's membership card instead of her own. That took a few minutes to work out. Then she realized that we were guests and brought out multiple forms for us to fill out. Okay, I can understand paper work. But then she charged us $10 each and we had no cash. By now the class had started.

After paying by credit card because we had no cash, we made the mistake of grumbling that by now the class was half over. "Oh, you didn't tell me you were trying out a class," she said. "That will be another $6!" After settling up this next transaction, there seemed to be less paperwork to getting married than to trying out this gym for an hour.

At that point my daughter did the math and realized that we were about to spend $32 for a day, when a three-month trial membership was $90. "Can we just sign up for that instead?" she asked. So I asked if we could just go to the class first and then join for three months. She looked at us like we were insane. No, we had to join as members first. After ripping up the old forms and filling out all those new forms, she concluded, "Everything's official and now you can go to the class just as long as you have copies of your birth certificates." Like we keep those with us in our wallets.

By then the class was over, our tempers were hot and I felt like an absolute idiot for wasting all that time. I don't ever want to see that gym again. But here's the good news. All the rules had been followed.

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