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Patronizing LBS manager? (or complete moron)(22 posts)

Patronizing LBS manager? (or complete moron)filtersweep
Oct 24, 2003 3:38 PM
I'm not quite sure what to make of this. Today it was a bit cold out, and it is probably the LAST day of post-work riding in 2003 for me (standard time resumes this weekend).

I have two club rides this weekend- probably the last of those before it is simply too cold. Last weekend, my FlightDeck pickup battery went out (those things EAT batteries- they last me about 2 months), so I thought I'd ride across town and buy a battery (rather than drive in rush hour) so I could get a ride in and take care of that errand.

Anyway, I make it to my usual LBS, where I know the guys, and where our Thurs ride left all summer- they had no such battery, but recommend another shop nearby. The other shop has no batteries at all, so I head to the same shop I purchased the batteries before when they went dead. I guess the fact that it was my third choice should tell me something. It is the large local chain- the dreaded volume seller (that carries the Trek and Giant lines).

Anyway, I don't think at the first LBS there is anything unusual about someone walking in dressed in road gear. I'm basically wearing a generic Castelli short sleeve jersey over a base T, with arm warmers and leg warmers, helmet, sunglasses, etc... not a stitch of team gear in sight. I ride a Look, not a Trek... and not even a team bike.

When I walk in, the shop manager asks "Are you Lance Armstrong?" It wasn't a particularly sarcastic tone of voice, and perhaps he was trying to impart a compliment, but I wanted to kill him on the spot. All I could muster was "I don't think so." (Rather than commenting on his mother's sexual habits, etc... it caught me a bit off guard). The shop guy asked me a bunch of questions about my bike- probably in an effort to change the topic as quickly as possible. I had to wait for a "regular employee" to ring me up- and he took forever- he was trying to look down the shirt of the female customer leaning over the counter.

Of course they had the battery... and a ton of high end BMX parts and snow boards and so on... probably could even have purchased a quarter ounce of pot back in the alley from at least one of the employees.

Am I just being a bit over-sensitive?
re: Patronizing LBS manager? (or complete moron)ctisevn
Oct 24, 2003 4:29 PM
was it penn cycle?
How did you know?!filtersweep
Oct 24, 2003 5:40 PM
Seriously- it was- in Uptown...
How did you know?!Giant_Tom
Oct 25, 2003 12:48 AM
Penn blows! or do they suck? No matter it's all the same, they're not worth going to unless it's something you need and they're the only place that has it.
It was my last choice-filtersweep
Oct 25, 2003 4:27 AM
I can't even get those batteries in a Walgreens hearing aid aisle...

A friend of mine says you could buy a Trek 5900 at full retail from Penn and two days later you could walk back in the store and not only would they not remember your name, they wouldn't even remember you were ever a customer.

Giant Tom? Do I know you? Are you "tall Tom" who rides a Giant (with the world's longest seatpost) ??
It was my last choice-Giant_Tom
Oct 25, 2003 8:26 AM
"Giant Tom? Do I know you? Are you "tall Tom" who rides a Giant (with the world's longest seatpost) ??"

Nope, not me. I have an Allez and also ride a Giant NRS mtn bike. Tom
How did you know?!ctisevn
Oct 25, 2003 9:18 AM
semi educated guess. you said it was a trek shop and penn has a high jabroni factor at the mgmt level, at least they did when I was a local. theyre not all bad though, I got my first "real" mt bike there in 97 or 98. although it wasnt a store sale, I bought the service managers bianchi out of the back of the shop.
re: Patronizing LBS manager? (or complete moron)Chainstay
Oct 24, 2003 4:32 PM
I would say you are a customer with high expectations. They don't meet them for all kinds of reasons and don't appear to care.

The Lance comment would bug me too but I have seen sales people start off with their foot in their mouth when they try to make a joke. It's better to let the customer set the tone.
re: Patronizing LBS manager? (or complete moron)biketillyapuke
Oct 24, 2003 4:33 PM
The reason to support your local shop is that when people don't own the store, they could care less about helping the customer. It probably wasn't what they said but the attitude. And really, why should he care? Does he get a decent wage and health benefits? No, the job sucks and he has no incentive to make your life easier.

Nevertheless, I really think you should post the name of the shop. Make them pay for their lousy service and poor treatment of employees as well as customers.
I expect that from a 7-11 manager not an LBS manager nmDave Hickey
Oct 24, 2003 4:58 PM
The guy would still be a jerk whether he was selling ...Live Steam
Oct 24, 2003 5:21 PM
bikes or burgers. I don't think the fact that he works in a shop happens to effect his personality. But gees you do sound a bit sensative. I would have just answered "Yes, would you like an autograph?"
Yes, I'm here for my free Madone.Scot_Gore
Oct 24, 2003 5:44 PM
Comebacks are easy with time.

I bet you'll get over. :-)
I always figure...gtx
Oct 24, 2003 7:10 PM
if you can get out of the LBS without a stupid comment, lame or wrong answer, or some other bit of attitude you're doing well. But yes, you're being over-sensitive. Keep in mind what the typical LBS employee is being paid.
re: Patronizing LBS manager? (or complete moron)koala
Oct 25, 2003 3:30 AM
I walked into my LBS with my new Carl Strong custom(foco steel) and the kid says to me "what did you buy that for?" I almost walked out right there. Then the kid says the frame was heavy(they sell giant and seven,giants dont fit and sevens are hard for me to rationalize unless I can get in more than 3000 miles in a year). Its a good thing the manager treats me so well and is great when it comes to price. Course this is the same kid who loved my Colnago Master Light, which was a pound heavier.
Yeah I'm Lance......Mr. Whipple I presume? (nm)Crankist
Oct 25, 2003 6:09 AM
re: Patronizing LBS manager? (or complete moron)DINOSAUR
Oct 25, 2003 7:08 AM
You were probably being a bit over-sensitive, you don't know what he meant by the remark.

I just about quit doing business on the internet, I'd rather take the time and drive down to my LBS. At least I have a name there, and not some faceless person who places orders on an internet bike shop. The problem is you've read too much into it, you could have had a good comeback line, such as "Lance who?"

I've always noticed that my LBS treats all customers the same, high zoot roadracers to a Mom dragging her kids bike in for a flat tire repair. LBS's who know how to treat their customers stay in business, it's not all about prices...
I think you'll live!!! nmbiknben
Oct 25, 2003 9:19 AM
Yes you are being over sensitive you Look riding snob (nm)TREKY
Oct 25, 2003 10:24 AM
Erik's gave me one for free!Zman
Oct 25, 2003 5:02 PM
When my Flight Deck went dead (after 2+ years!) I went to Erik's in Shoreview and they gave me one for free.

Many of you Bi-aches must be from Minnesota I see.

2+ years?filtersweep
Oct 25, 2003 7:34 PM
For the pickup? Are you kidding?

Erik's in St. Louis Park had no FD batteries... yes, unfortunately from MN.
Ignore him, get your battery, and move on.MXL02
Oct 27, 2003 6:50 AM
The fact that you've spent an inordinate amount of time discussing it here would suggest an answer of "yes" to your last question. Don't let that jerk ruin your day. Just stay centered, don't let outside distractors affect you, and keep riding.
you are being too sensitiveColnagoFE
Oct 27, 2003 8:16 AM
I think it was just his idea of a [bad] joke. I would have blown it off.