Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Public Service Announcement

Greetings friends, I would like to talk to you today about what I feel is wrong with this great nation, the USA, today.
Where the hell is my baker's dozen?
Where has my 13th doughnut gone?

Where is my lagniappe?

Once upon a time, in the time before massive chain stores and unchecked commercialism feeding a pathetic socialistic agenda, an agenda that embraces Darwinism yet fails, ironically, to realize that it was left behind by that very Darwinism it touts (or even that a system which attempts to keep everyone on equal footing despite evolutionary improvements is a de facto inversion of that very system) there were local stores.  In a community of sufficient size there would be more than one choice of various merchants, like bakers, and thus the merchant would offer a gratuity or reward to faithful customers (or to entice customers, works both ways) and that would be a baker's dozen (13 instead of 12).  Down Louisiana way they call a gratuity offered by a merchant as a reward for faithful custom "lagniappe", a little sometin' extra, cherie.

See, when you have a choice in a free society your dollars and your custom are respected by merchants, or at least they once were.  What sort of incentive do you have to shop at a large chain store?  Lower prices?  Longer lines?  Crowds of people with which you would never associate but for the "convenience" of the place?
What sort of attitude do you get from a restaurant these days?  How many times have you been made to feel as though the restaurant were doing you a favor by selling you their overpriced fare?  They do remember to post that sign that reminds you that they can refuse service to anyone.  They do have a plastic placard on the door that says "Thank You Come Again" but do you get the lagniappe?  When was the last time Dunkin Donuts duked you a Boston creme just because you show up regularly instead of getting the cheap dozen at the Super Wal-Mart?
When was the last time Starbucks...actually discard that sentence because that is pretentious bullshit anyway.
Here in this society of ours we are steadily increasing the socially acceptable minimum for the standard gratuity we give for food service (what is it now 15%, 20%?) but the merchants are not responding in kind.  The relationship between the seller and the purchaser is increasingly disparate and dammit it is wrong.
I want my baker's dozen, dammit!  I want to stop this complete and total lack of concern for people and see if we can reverse the trend.  Sign of the times?  No Vacancy.

I'm not asking for dramatically lower gas prices or anything crazy like that, I just want the merchant to remember that (s)he is not doing me any favors by selling to me and I alone am not doing the merchant any favors by purchasing from them, but that we are part of a symbiotic relationship.  I will do my part by supporting local when I can and passing good word of mouth when I feel it is deserved.  For that don't I, nay, don't we all deserve a little lagniappe now and den?

Keep your pumpkins lit.  Hell, keep two, you deserve it.

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