Thursday, October 06, 2005

Would you buy a router from this man?

With fall in the air and the Santa Anas blowing I was reminded of a wonderful experience I had a couple of Halloweens ago at the Best Buy at Pico and Sawtelle. I normally hold my allegiance to Fry's Electronics quite dear, but sometimes time and need force me to take a walk under the big yellow tag.

On this particular day, I wanted nothing more than a Linksys router, a fairly common piece of networking equipment. I picked it off the shelf and went to check out, where I was confronted by a mob scene, thirty-odd people milling about waiting for the three open registers. To my left, I saw a bunch of Best Buy guys standing around and chatting, so I approached them. I said "I see a lot of blue shirts, and I see three open registers, can we do something about this?" One of them said "That's not my department," to which I replied a little testily, "Let's find the guy whose department it is and get him over here." I was still waiting on line a few minutes later when a man approached me wearing a Best Buy name tag and a full clown suit--red wig, white makeup, bulbous nose, polka-dot suit, the works. He stood in front of me, and with a surprising amount of attitude for a man in a clown suit, asked, "Is there an issue?"

That's when it happened. It came out of me, I had no control of it, and I'm still a little surprised I said it. But I couldn't stop it, it was like a fever. I looked that man in the square in the eye and said with a completely straight face, "Are you the clown in charge?"

"Yes," he replied, with a stony expression. And while the people around us where dying laughing, neither of us dared. I think we both realized the second one of us cracked a smile, we'd have to fight. And you know what no one wants to see, it turns out, is a fat guy and a clown rolling around on the floor of Best Buy.

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