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Elitist comic vendors

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1 Elitist comic vendors on Tue Aug 17, 2010 5:10 pm

nerraux

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Per the discussion in Princess Cast 2 about comic guys being generally elitist about dealing with women...

Let's be fair. Folks in retail deal with stupid people all day. As a result, they tend to be a little high-and-mighty from the start. Frankly, it's a better defense when customers are constantly trying to come at you on the offensive. The alternative gets you at least fired and more likely on an evening news story involving the liberal use of the word "rampage."

Comic store folk have all the same pressures, plus they're lifelong geeks. They've been abused by everyone on the other side of that door, but this side is their territory and they will not tolerate anyone stomping on their fortress of solitude. As a result, they tend to be high-and-mighty with anyone they don't know that approaches them on even ground, much less on the offensive. Females, who enter carrying the baggage of having their tits looked at all day (sorry, I love 'em), are extra sensitive when they get treated the way everyone does, much less when they get treated in relation to the eye-batting, toe-digging, help-me-i'm-oh-so-frail chickie that came through 10 minutes before.

I'm not saying the store guys are right, I'm just saying that if you've ever worked in a customer service position, you know how your mood and temperament shift from customer to customer. Consider the baggage, enter the cage with an air of being glad for every minute the lion lets you live, maybe do that shoulder squeeze thing that accents cleavage (sorry, I really do love 'em), and know that you'll have even status on the second visit.

Seriously, it works for me. Thatcher loves my milkshake.

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2 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Tue Aug 17, 2010 6:50 pm

Lee

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It's a damn Napoleon complex when you get down to it.


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3 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Tue Aug 17, 2010 7:01 pm

Joshua

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Comic retailers being shitty to women is nothing more than an attempt at getting some sense of catharsis for being rejected all of their life. It's petty, misogynistic, and a bad way to run a business.

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4 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Tue Aug 17, 2010 7:03 pm

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Lee wrote:It's a damn Napoleon complex when you get down to it.

Well, yes and no. If you want to be a professional, then you have to take all of those stupid little insecurities and irritations and put them in a box and try to ignore them. You won't be able to all of the time, because people are going to ask if they make new comics, how much their first appearance of Spider-Man #1 is worth (y'know, the Mcfarlane one. I know it's the first Spider-Man because it says #1 on it), if you can make money doing this, etc. etc. Nerraux is right, it's like any other customer service field, where you have to be able to deal with the stupid shit that stupid or deliberately rude people are going to bring in the door. We talked about that a little bit on this weeks Super-Fly show this week.

You may not be able to give everyone 100% a 100% of the time, but you have to be the better person and try right out of the gate. If the person is going to be obnoxious, rude, ignorant or whatever then you just have to let it roll off your back and find some way to vent so you don't take it out on the next person.

And yes, Dave Chappelle does come in every now and again. He knows me as "the comic book guy." Smile


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5 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Tue Aug 17, 2010 7:23 pm

Sapphire Gypsy

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I thought it was "the Star Trek guy"? Wink

I worked in retail for a number of years, before I got a degree, then I worked in the health care field at an Urgent Care. Let me tell you, I think people are worse in that setting. Talk about expecting everything for nothing.... anyway.

The problem is that for every one of those "Aw shucks" girls there is walking into a comic shop there are ones that have been life long geeks too. Using the "I've been looked down on all my life for being a comic nerd" thing goes both ways.

Heck, I'd almost say it's worse as a woman because I don't fit in with "normal" women, at all. So, the group of people that I'm supposed to genetically have an in with look at me like I'm a freak, and because the collections of girl nerds seem to be in smaller numbers than those of guy nerds. Well, we're a lonely bunch. I feel like when Codex wanted to meet the rest of her guild because she though she had no life. The majority of nerd girls I know I've never met. Hell until this year they were ALL on the internet. I've had to FAKE caring about celebrity gossip so I could get out of the house with "normal girls".

I digress. The point is that it's not a viable excuse. We're not asking to be treated any better or even differently than they would treat any other customer. Just treat us like we're that guy that just walked in the shop and we'll get along fine.

Also, look at the boobage when I can't see you. I know you're gonna do it but, can you at least make it covert? Wink

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6 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Tue Aug 17, 2010 7:25 pm

Lee

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There will be bad days, but I tihnk the problem the girls were getting at is a consistent level of shittiness.


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7 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Tue Aug 17, 2010 8:14 pm

nerraux

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Totally, SG. I wasn't saying it doesn't happen or that it's excusable when it does. I'm just saying that the whole thing is a clash of people bringing baggage to the table that has very little hope of sitting well the first time.

You walk in with a [justified] chip planted firmly on shoulder.

They're already in the dregs with a male customer, and your gender alone is going to guarantee a step further south.

It would be like sending a troop of nuns into a prison -- best case scenario is still a bad case.

It's amazing there aren't more comic shop murders on a daily basis. But like most situations women have to face on a daily basis -- Lee bless you all -- if you can get past the first visit, the second is much less trying. I mean, C-Pain can date Knize...






*still jealous I didn't get first crack at Knize 2010

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8 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Tue Aug 17, 2010 8:14 pm

WonderWoman2.0

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Joshua wrote:Comic retailers being shitty to women is nothing more than an attempt at getting some sense of catharsis for being rejected all of their life. It's petty, misogynistic, and a bad way to run a business.

Wow, so between this and his Twitter posts yesterday, Joshua's pretty much saying everything a person needs to in order to get me to sleep with them. Kudos.

And Nerraux, I understand where you're coming from, but what we were going for was just that we want to be treated like every other nerd that comes into a store, regardless of how awesome our boobs are. Wink


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9 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Wed Aug 18, 2010 1:51 pm

nerraux

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Yes, but within that discussion one of you said something to the effect of, "I want to stab them when they assume we're all 'that girl' and treat us like idiots." And then in the next breath another said, "I like going in there and being 'that girl.'"

I get treated that way when I go into Victoria's Secret too, but I know the yahoo before me was 'that guy' so I pick the can-holder I want to see on my wife and go my way.

You might as well boycott France until all their citizens learn English so we can tour there more easily. It sucks, but it is what it is.






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10 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Wed Aug 18, 2010 11:31 pm

Joshua

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Treating customers like shit, whether you think they deserve it or not, is not good customer service. When you're in the business of making money customer service is key. Obviously if someone is being overly difficult or belligerent then it's in a shopkeeper's best interest to boot their ass out ("the customer is always right" is bullshit), but if you mistreat every difficult customer you're going to lose a lot of business.

Also, treating women shabbily just because of their gender (or anyone based on any superficial criteria) means you're a turd.

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11 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Thu Aug 19, 2010 12:50 pm

nerraux

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Nobody argues that.

It's about expectations. to extend your analogy, if you go into the outhouse and it smells like roses, you should be overjoyed at the surprise and make that your outhouse of choice forever. If you go into the outhouse _expecting_ it to smell like roses, you're willfully ignorant, and that's on you.

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12 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Thu Aug 19, 2010 12:56 pm

Joshua

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So people should go into comic book stores expecting to have someone condescend to them as if they're mewling children? I don't buy it.

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13 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Thu Aug 19, 2010 12:58 pm

Lee

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Hell, even I'll admit even I'm pleasantly surprised when I walk into a new store and the guys working there aren't a-holes. It also makes it much more likely I'll come back.


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14 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Thu Aug 19, 2010 1:39 pm

Silent K

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I think this is less about gender and more about people being assholes in general. You just have to find a good shop, like your Superflys and your A Comic Shops.


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15 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Thu Aug 19, 2010 4:25 pm

nerraux

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Joshua wrote:So people should go into comic book stores expecting to have someone condescend to them as if they're mewling children? I don't buy it.
Not much on playing the percentages, are you?

Silent K wrote:I think this is less about gender and more about people being assholes in general. You just have to find a good shop, like your Superflys and your A Comic Shops.
Exactly.

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16 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Thu Aug 19, 2010 7:04 pm

Joshua wrote:Treating customers like shit, whether you think they deserve it or not, is not good customer service. When you're in the business of making money customer service is key. Obviously if someone is being overly difficult or belligerent then it's in a shopkeeper's best interest to boot their ass out ("the customer is always right" is bullshit), but if you mistreat every difficult customer you're going to lose a lot of business.

Also, treating women shabbily just because of their gender (or anyone based on any superficial criteria) means you're a turd.

Even though I have a full time (except for summers) job teaching, I work all year round in my LCS...ten hours per week during the school year and 25-30 hours during the summer months.

You do the best you can with all customers, period. Yes, some can drive you crazy but if you don't have great customer service, most will fade away to online buying. There are too many sites out there that have major discounts on the comics. You have to have the customers want to come to your shop and actually spend more there on a comic than they could pay for it online. That means that they have to feel welcome, comfortable, and accepted!!!!

I now have customers that come in only when I am working and willingly stay and geek out for hours knowing that I have to ignore them to attend to any incoming customers.

Gender should never play a role in how a customer is treated...no matter how good looking or ugly they are. (and yes you can look and admire a person's (ahemmmm) attributes without them knowing that you are admiring).

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17 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Thu Aug 19, 2010 7:55 pm

Joshua

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nerraux wrote:
Not much on playing the percentages, are you?
Not at the expense of profit.

If someone would prefer to concentrate more on being a smarmy know-it-all rather than providing good customer service, that's certainly their prerogative, but there are too many other competitive shopping venues to run a successful business that way. I don't disagree that there are idiots, but if a retailer can't handle dealing with difficult people, perhaps they are in the wrong business.

Yes, some can drive you crazy but if you don't have great customer service, most will fade away to online buying. There are too many sites out there that have major discounts on the comics. You have to have the customers want to come to your shop and actually spend more there on a comic than they could pay for it online. That means that they have to feel welcome, comfortable, and accepted!!!!
Exactly.

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18 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Thu Aug 19, 2010 10:38 pm

Silent K wrote:I think this is less about gender and more about people being assholes in general. You just have to find a good shop, like your Superflys and your A Comic Shops.

I would have to agree with Knize on this. I think it goes for any business not just comic shops. You'll always have the assholes no matter where you go but there is also always the good shops. I can vouch for A Comic Shop as when I lived in Orlando I walked in there and they greeted me with open arms. I can also say the same about The Vintage Phoenix here in Bloomington while they don't have the kick ass zombie killing club that A Comic Shop does (they rent out a gun range from time to time and hang up zombies for target fire it's amazing) they still greeted me with open arms and as soon as I get the disposable income to start buying books again it will defiantly be from them. I have also walked into some stores over the years and the people working there seemed like elitist assholes so I left and never went back. Bad business practices happen everywhere. If you run into it stop giving them your business and look around for someplace that treats you well and it will work out great for everyone involved. I think when we take out trip to the rock n roll hall of fame we're going to have to make a side trip to Somewhere Ohio and check out Superfly while we are out that way.

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19 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Fri Aug 20, 2010 12:55 am

nerraux

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AKA Brandon wrote:I think when we take out trip to the rock n roll hall of fame we're going to have to make a side trip to Somewhere Ohio and check out Superfly while we are out that way.

TRUE STORY: Superfly > Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame

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20 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Fri Aug 20, 2010 1:24 am

jfx316

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nerraux wrote:
AKA Brandon wrote:I think when we take out trip to the rock n roll hall of fame we're going to have to make a side trip to Somewhere Ohio and check out Superfly while we are out that way.

TRUE STORY: Superfly > Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame

I'll agree with that. Tad busting a spontaneous move is pretty rock and roll.


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21 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Fri Aug 20, 2010 1:39 am

BlueMaxx

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I've honestly never noticed this at my comicshop. To be fair, I have a comic lady. So, it cancels things out with the sexism/insecurities, I guess.

Like DW was saying, seems to me that comic guys are doing a preemptive defense with the being insecure aspect, even if it's that slight "sigh, you're wasting my time" look while talking with a female customer. There's anuses everywhere, but just think, they don't hate you, they're just getting defensive to some degree. Maybe they put on a facade of a "don't care" attitude to seem cooler in your eyes, but seem off-standish.

I'm thinking too much. Or maybe they're just a shit worker. don't know tongue

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22 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Fri Aug 20, 2010 1:42 am

G_Zatara

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I know this all too well.

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23 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Fri Aug 20, 2010 11:38 am

Demonweasel

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jfx316 wrote:
nerraux wrote:
AKA Brandon wrote:I think when we take out trip to the rock n roll hall of fame we're going to have to make a side trip to Somewhere Ohio and check out Superfly while we are out that way.

TRUE STORY: Superfly > Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame

I'll agree with that. Tad busting a spontaneous move is pretty rock and roll.

It's true. I was AC/DC rocking out the other day. Windmill power move FTW.


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24 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Fri Aug 20, 2010 11:45 am

Demonweasel

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I've also heard stories from folks that when they come into a shop for the first time and the clerk is busy with a customer that's an obvious regular seeing them being all buddy-buddy makes them feel like "Oh, he's friendly to that guy but he won't give me the time of day" and that just adds to the "clubhouse" feeling. If I'm having a conversation with someone, regular or not, I make a point of greeting other folks when they come in, even if it means interrupting the conversation I'm in. I'm not perfect, so this happens maybe 90-95% of the time, but still it's important.

It's amazing how so much baggage goes into every single interaction we have with people we just meet or places that we just walk into. I can think of no other industry where it's more charged and potentially rewarding or damaging than in comic shops.


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25 Re: Elitist comic vendors on Fri Aug 20, 2010 11:52 am

Heytherejeffro

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Honestly, some people must go to some stores run by some utter shit-bags. We treat the women that come in to the store with equal (if not better) attention than male customers.

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