Retail Hell Memories: Air Apparent



From u/idiotsarray, Tales From Retail:


Years ago I worked for a well known tire and automotive service center found at major malls across the United States. I was customer service manager the night a lady came in for a set of tires.

One of our brand new service writers was assisting her and I was listening in as i was helping other customers. the transaction wasn't the easiest, he (coworker) wasn't 100% comfortable being on his own yet and she (lady) didn't know exactly what she wanted but was adamant that she knew exactly what she was talking about no matter how wrong she may have been. she was short, in temperament if not stature, and rude. They hashed out what tires she was getting and everything went fine until she came to pick up the car and asked about what we used to inflate the tires.

L: What do you use to fill the tires?

CW: air, i think.

L: Don't get smart with me. what do you put in your tires?

CW: I'm not sure what you mean.

About this time I finish with the customer I'm helping so I wander over to assist.

CW [to me]: She wants to know what we put in the tires.

L [also to me]: This man doesn't know the very basics of how your business works. He needs to be educated about what goes on here. I just want to know what you use to fill your tires and he couldn't tell me. Over at [other membership place for tires and assorted bulk items] they fill their tires with nitrogen. I assume you do the same.

Nitrogen was the new fancy thing for tire retailers at the time and since NASCAR filled their tires with it then I obviously NEED it in my tires.

ME: We use a proprietary mix of gasses, the majority being nitrogen, plus oxygen, a little co2 and some trace elements as well.

L: Oh. really?

ME: Yup. Considering cost and performance we feel this is one of the better options available.

L [somewhat impressed]: Ok. I'm glad to hear that. And you're sure there's nitrogen in it.

ME: Definitely.

She drove off happy.

CW: Do we really use stuff like that to fill tires?

ME: Yup. It's nothing special. Just air.