Newspaper fee collectors have gone from toothless, poorly dressed, and unhappy to having a full set of teeth, dressed nicely, and able to do more than grunt. (Was the former only in my neighborhood?) The guy who came around last time managed a smile. (A SMILE?!) This disturbing trend of niceness has carried over to Mainichi’s sales department.

Upon answering the phone this evening, I was greeted by a very grandmotherly voice. My first thought was, “Oh, this must be someone from school.” (This was incorrect.) The voice asked very politely if I would consider changing to Mainichi from Asahi. Do you know how difficult it was to turn down such a defenseless sounding voice?

This niceness approach is a cunning plan. How many will fall for it?

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