By Allen Levin

Opportunities are all around us. Life is exciting and fun! There are opportunities where you least expect them. In LA, they are everywhere. Life is an adventure!

Many times opportunities are masked as negative experiences. There is an opportunity there! Here’s a fun example from last night. Last night my wife and I went over to a frozen yogurt place for dessert. On our way over there we noticed a Halloween shop that was really cute. We looked in the window and decided to go in. There was a big section of Halloween stuff set up and caution tape was wrapped all around it. I remember thinking, “Could this section be closed? No. There would be a sign. They are just trying to make it look Halloween-spooky.”

There were many cute masks and Halloween articles that would have been expensive, they were marked down dramatically. I looked around the store again. This wasn’t a Halloween store! This was a Goodwille. I didn’t even realize it! We were in this section for a good 10 minutes looking around at the items. I was definitely going to buy some for our Halloween party this year, so I had a couple in my hands. We were not being obnoxious or loud. We were well dressed and behaving well. It was quite a surprise when we were yelled at, “That section isn’t open until tomorrow!”

I said, “I’m sorry. We didn’t know that” and I began putting back the masks from where I’d gotten them. The woman heard us apologize and could see that we were putting things back. She yelled “GET OUT OF THERE YOU TWO!!” My wife’s face had dropped. She was embarrassed. It was really uncool and unnecessary. In that moment I didn’t recognize the fun opportunities before us. I was stunned to be treated this way. Someone in customer service shouldn’t behave that way. They could have simply said, “I’m sorry guys. This section isn’t open until tomorrow.” They would have found us agreeable.

Instead my wife wanted me to write a review on Yelp and I felt the review was warranted. She also wrote her own review. My review stated,
“I was in the store with my wife moments ago. We were in the Halloween section with no way of knowing it was closed. The caution tape around the section simply made it look spooky. We were both cheerful and dressed well. We are both highly educated. It wasnt possible to think we were causing any trouble. We were going to buy some of the items. The workers kicked us out of the section with an incredibly rude and loud voice in an attempt to provoke us.

Rather than engage in the store we’d like people to know that your employees on 8/31/18 30 minutes before closing in the evening do not represent you well. They shouldn’t be working with people in customer service.

When we found out the section was closed we didn’t take issue. We were leaving and had apologized. That’s when one of them unnecessarily yelled “Get out of there!”

I feel sorry for her as she’s clearly an unhappy person who has no business working in a customer interaction capacity.

I’m a small business owner. I’d never treat people that way or employ someone that would.”

My wife’s review was up as well, in her own words stating what happened. Putting up the reviews last night returned my wife’s smile and seemed to balance things out. My wife said we should never go there again! Merely hours later I deleted my review. Much of the following I expressed to my wife: I feel sorry for the woman who yelled at us. She’s probably kicked people out of that section all day and was tired and frustrated. A happy person doesn’t act that way. She didn’t treat us well, that’s true, however she gave us a great opportunity.

Here is where we look a bit closer to find the opportunity.

If she kicked us out, and she likely kicked others out, that means no one has been able to go through this treasure trove of awesome Halloween stuff. They are open in the morning? Saturday morning? Excellent. I’ll go right after they open and take my pick of shockingly expensive Halloween gear (including one mask that was marked $9.99 that I’d seen online selling for $100) at great prices.

The next morning (today) I went in about 30 minutes after they opened. I was surprised to see that the Halloween section was already really popular. Did I come too late? No. All of the masks I wanted from the previous night were there. While I was checking out the man behind the counter (she from last night was at the other counter) said, “You know there are more masks kind of hidden in a drawer as we didn’t have the room to display them. Follow me.” I found even more great masks! While I was looking through them a woman who had been there looking for deals said, “OMG. I didn’t see those! You found the treasure!” I said, “Yes I did!” I spent about $85. I got at least $500 worth of great stuff for our party this year! What a great opportunity! This was made possible by her kicking people out of the section (albeit rudely). There is simply no way I could have gotten this deal. She was (in effect) protecting my great find!

As I left the store feeling much better about the previous night and my great finds, the woman who had told me I found treasure was excited! She said, “My goodness you scored. You scored all the way!”

Yes I did. Thanks for the opportunity!

Aside: While I was checking out the teller from last night yelled at someone “The short sleeves are over THERE!” I still feel sorry for her. I’m glad I took my review down. I hope she gets some help.