Victim to the emotional sales pitch


I should have known it was coming.

people-2599796_640.jpgOne of the tires on my car has been losing air for the past week. I’ve been filling-up the tire and it lasts for a day or so, before needing a refill. That’s all fine, but annoying as hell when you’re trying to get to and from work each day.

In any event, I took my car to the shop where I bought the tires. I was hoping that it would be a small leak that could be fixed and I would be in-and-out and on my way in a few minutes. Instead, I ended up needing to buy two new tires.

I chalked it up to First World problems. I was annoyed, but I couldn’t complain too much. I drive close to 45 minutes to get to work each day and then make the return trip each evening and I could certainly use the new tires. My issue is that I’ve started to look for another car. I’m not buying today or tomorrow, but I can certainly see D-day, Decision Day in my small world, coming and I would have loved to hold off on the replacement tires, but it wasn’t meant to be.

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As I waited, the tire salesman asked if I wanted their razzle, dazzle protection plan.

Imagine the real estate salesmen in the 1992 cult movie Glengarry Glen Ross without the finely pressed suit and tie and instead a name patch with his name stitched on the left breast and a troll with fuzzy purple hair on the end of his pencil. (Yea, okay he didn’t look the part of a killer salesman, but trust me, the man knew what he was doing.)

The guy was nice enough, but he would have fit right into the movie with his “always be closing” approach. “We’re including the protection plan today, right?” he asked. “You really wouldn’t want to go without.”

I initially told him that I wasn’t planning to buy the special package, but then he pulled out my Krytonite. He asked if I was going to be passing along the car to one of my kids. He then promptly made his pitch on how the plan would cover free flat repairs, wheel balancing, alignment checks, and nitrogen inflation.

With his nice little push, I immediately saw my son or daughter stranded along the side of the busy highway. Six lanes of traffic barreling down upon them. Rain and snow throwing everything it could muster at them too. Damn salesman. Of course, I didn’t have time to really think it through, and figure out that my kid’s first call, obviously, would be to dear old dad.

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He had me. In boxing terms, it was TKO, a knockout. The bell just needed to ring, fight over. The two entourages just needed to collect their things and shake hands. Fight over. Run the credits, next customer on deck!

Of course, I obediently went along with the salesman and shook my head yes. I must have looked like a little deer stuck in his headlights.

I cursed my decision, but, it hit me later in the day, if I hadn’t bought the protection plan, I guarantee you I would have had a flat tire within minutes of leaving the store.

Okay, maybe a week or two at the latest, but it would have happened, at least that’s what I’m telling myself. Don’t try to convince me otherwise. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

 

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