Monday 7 April 2014

Sim Card Dance

I had occasion to go to one of those stores that provide cell phone coverage. I am always hesitant to use these places because I start out with the idea that they are trying to cheat me and I am able to adjust that opinion up or down as the situation warrants it.

It is a free standing store that happens to stand beside a Starbucks coffee shop. I arrived around 10:30 AM and after I found a parking spot, the door was locked. This is the second time I have gone to this place and found it closed when it should be open. I got back in the car wondering where I could go when a young guy came out of Starbucks, unlocked the door and went inside. I got out of the car and opened the door of the store and asked “Are you open yet?” He nodded his head up and down, which I took to mean “yes”. I suppose that it could be that he was trying to swallow a large bite of cookie, but I walked in anyways.

I explained that my wife needed the Sim card from her phone to be replaced with a micro Sim card to fit in a new phone that she was given. I read a few articles on the web last night that explained how it is possible to trim the larger Sim card to fit a micro card slot. I gave it some serious thought, but the chance of screwing the card up completely wasn’t worth the ten bucks I could potentially save. The kid explained that he was new and made a phone call to someone that could help him through the process.

I stood there waiting while this kid talked a mixture of English-Chinese. I’m not sure if there are just some words in English that have no Chinese equivalent or if this is the beginning of our world moving towards a single pidgin language. While I waited for this guy to get his remote training, I looked around at all of the shiny things on the walls and shelves. They had all sorts of phones, tablets and all of the accessories that are so important when you have an electronic life.

While the kid was getting and repeating the secret access code out loud, I looked a little closer at the store. It hadn’t been dusted in quite a while and the floors hadn’t been washed in at least the same amount of time. Now, I’m not really “Kenny Klean”, but I do know that there is a big difference between my living room floor and the floor in a place that you want to make money in. It’s not as if this guy was terribly busy, after all he had just come back from a coffee break and he was too new to do anything by himself anyways. I’m sure that he could run a mop over the floor and pass a rag over the countertops.

That kind of house keeping is a pain in the ass I’m sure, but speaking as a consumer, it does make a difference in my shopping experience. It’s the old adage that if the owners don’t take pride in what they are doing, then why should anyone else. Perhaps I had just come in between cleanings and now that he was topped up on caffeine, the place would soon be spotless. Uh-huh!

We tried twice to pay with the debit card, and when that was unsuccessful I had to resort to money. I found it odd that in a high tech store they couldn’t figure out how the debit machine worked. That doesn’t instil confidence in whether my micro-Sim card would actually work. The kid had to go over to Starbucks to get my change and left me standing there wondering just how I could get this tiny sim card home without losing it. I should have loaded up my crotch with all the cell phones I could cram in my pants, but I didn’t really want to have to do this Sim card dance again at a new store.

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