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Whenever any of my customers begin with this line, it's understood that they will be just that. It's their pathetic way to rationalize the torrent of complaints they are about to unload on you for the reasons you are both aware of. Even if their unhappiness in not your fault directly:

You are the only one standing in front of them at the moment.
You are forced to listen; it's your job to stand there and take it.
They don't have nearly enough people in their own lives to complain to.
You don't have anything you'd rather be doing.

I work in the body shop of a dealership, where new cars are sold in the way they've always been sold, through condescending manipulation of figures and facts. The consumer knows to expect salesmen to be the lowest common denominator of human relations, and it will never improve even if the consumer wants it to improve, and what's funny is that consumers accept that. People commit to spending more money on a car than I make in a year even though they hated everything involved with the transaction and most of the time, they don't even get what they wanted from the product itself.

I was supposed to deliver an Explorer that had just been purchased with some lot damage incurred before the purchase. The word "deliver" in my business means I walk you out to the lot, point to your car and say, "There it is." It does not mean I show up at your door in your car with a big ribbon tied around it. Cars are not pizzas. I was handling a customer that was not mine but belonged to a co-worker who was out for a few days, so I was not completely filled in on what it needed. Our shop missed a chip in the door and the fender we painted had some bubbles in it (showing new cars from the factory with bubbles in the paint doesn't help plead your case, but it is fun to see people squirm when they realize that automotive assembly is never perfect). The husband started in with the line, "I don't mean to be a dick or anything, but…"

But you are going to be one right now, aren't you? You're going to tell me that you expect a car you just bought that has been test driven by at least 20 schmucks before you to be perfect, to have no signs that it has been driven, even though there's 30 miles on it. You're also going to tell me that you have every intention of getting out of the signing agreement because of a door ding and even though you will likely wreck it yourself within the year, this car should not already have to be painted. You actually believe getting out of the deal will be like snapping your fingers while your salesmen has already spent the commission he made off you.

And you assume that I give a shit about new cars outside of the fact that I'm around them all the time, that they're my business. Don't get me wrong. I'm the kind of person who will wash a car myself to make sure it looks right when it's ready to go back to the owner, who takes special attention to details. But I don't do this to cover my ass, as the salesmen might. I do it because I actually care about my job, and I like doing it right the first time. I work in the office where you bring in your car after you or someone as stupid as you wrecks it. I've seen what deplorable appreciation you have for the cars you work so hard for, how little responsibility you take for your own ignorance. And yet I keep trying to provide a good service.

I told the guy that I will make sure everything is right on his Explorer and all I will want to know when I am done with it is whether to turn it over to him or the new car department as a re-stocked unit, that I didn't really care either way where it went (if he was going to be like that about it) as long as it eventually left my shop. I've got bigger fish to fry. As much as I'm expected to take that shit, that misguided whining, I hold my ground. You can't get me fired because you're not happy. You can't even get me demoted. You will be back when no other shop in the city can do as good a job as we can when you wreck your new car. And even if you don't others will. We know none of you can drive anyway.

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