My English professor once told me that questions are the mark of an intelligent person. I doubt she ever had a job in customer service though.
A few years ago, I used to work at my parent’s ice cream store. This one time, a customer was looking in our menu for a long time, looked up and asked me if we sold ice cream there.
“Umm…Do you guys sell ice cream here?”
Wait, what? You do realize this is an ice cream store right? That’s like going into Starbucks and asking if they sell overpriced, sugary drinks. I can’t imagine why an ice cream store wouldn’t sell ice cream. I don’t think most store owners buy twenty-foot advertising signs for shits and giggles… unless they were covering up a drug operation or something.
So I replied, “Yes we do sir. Anything in particular you’re looking for?” “Well, I really like French vanilla. What you guys make that stuff with?”
Now, I’m not really an expert ice cream producer. I tried once — in 5th grade — and it tasted really crappy. But I’m going to go ahead and guess there’s milk, sugar and vanilla extract. “Well, I’m not sure sir. We just order the product and get it shipped to our store.” “How do you not know the exact ingredients of the product you sell?”
Well because if I told you, I’d have to kill you. You see, as well as running several meth and cocaine labs in Costa Rica and Venezuela, my workers also run an ice cream factory in Cape Canaveral where I exclusively produce my French vanilla ice cream. Remember, we’re covering up a drug operation here? We ship our cocaine with the French vanilla because it effectively masks the cocaine scent. It leaves customs guard dogs stumped every time. “Sorry about that, sir.”
My English professor was right. This guy, with only two questions almost busted my cocaine operation! It was a close call, man.