Take my son-in-law for instance. I gave him this money-off voucher for face cream or something – he’s got awful skin, dry as sandpaper – and he goes to the chemist or supermarket or wherever he shops, and when he uses it, the voucher that is, the woman behind the counter gives him another one because he spent over a certain amount of money on the face cream and other things – condoms, hopefully – and, obviously, he can’t believe his luck.
So he goes and buys another one, which is probably a good thing – like I said, he needs to paint his face in the stuff – but this time he doesn’t have enough stuff to use the voucher or to get another one – he has to spend over twenty quid or something like that – but, instead of ending it there and then or giving me the voucher to say thank you, he goes and gets something else from the beauty or personal hygiene section, toothpaste or cotton wool buds or something, till he’s got enough for the money-off or a new voucher.
And he does it again and again. It doesn’t matter whether he needs the stuff or not. He wants the vouchers and he wants to use them – at least that’s what I get from this – like they’ve got some special power or something, which they obviously haven’t, or have, over him, making him think he’s getting a discount when, in fact, he’s spending an arm and a leg. And he keeps on doing it until they run out of vouchers, and the woman, or man – I don’t know – behind the counter says, sorry, we haven’t got any more, or something along those lines. And my son-in-law says, well, I want to see the manager then.
I have no idea what the checkout assistant thought of it all, probably that my son-in-law’s some kind of idiot, but she or he calls the manager, and the manager comes and my son-in-law shows him the bags of stuff he’s bought and says how he’s a good customer, a regular customer, a loyal customer, and he wants to spend money and get vouchers, look at all the bags I’ve got, isn’t the customer always right, don’t I deserve special treatment, do you want me to take my money elsewhere?
And the manager gives in. He wants him to stay, I don’t know, maybe he likes the look of all those bags spreading out from him like uncontrollable diarrhoea, doubling the chemist’s or supermarket’s profits, and he goes to all the tills and gets all the vouchers he can find – for hand cream, moisturiser, soap, shaving foam, talc, everything – and he hands them over to my idiot son-in-law and says, here you are, take these, spend as much as you like.
But my son-in-law looks at him and says, no, he just wants one, and the manager looks at him all confused and says, come on, you can use them all at once, you don’t have to keep on paying again and again and going back and forth to the counter. And my son-in-law shakes his head, or does something negative with his body anyway, shrugs or sighs or whatever and goes: but that’s the point, and he takes one, voucher that is, swans off to find whatever it’s for, and five minutes later is back at the counter waiting for his next voucher.