I was insulted, Our Community Must Demand Better Service

I was insulted, embarrassed, and highly offended at the food4Less when I returned a watermelon at the located in Lemon Grove. Only a block and a half distance from my Business. I actually, could not believe what happened to me. I was bringing a watermelon back that I had bought from the store and walked up to a clerk that knew who I was, I asked her could I see a store manager.  I then was asked to stand by the cigarette or liquor machine and a manager would meet me there. A lady manager of the store came out to meet me, she walked me to the produce department in order to satisfy me, I told her I had bought approximately 40 watermelons from there last summer and kept most of those receipts.  We were greeted by the produce manager named Gary; he greeted me as the “The Watermelon Man.”  I repeated to him that I had bought at least 40 watermelons from the store and they were all good. My wife likes only seeded watermelons and all the ones I bought had seeds, so the lady manager which was super nice said to me here is the produce manager Gary, we said our greetings to one another. The watermelons they had at the store at that time was selling for 14cent a pound and they weighed less than 5 pounds and didn’t look pretty good, so the lady manager suggested they cut one first to make sure I got a good one. Produce manager Gary and myself went to the back of the produce department and he cut a plug out of the watermelon. I tasted it and accepted it. To my surprise, the woman had given the receipt to the main store manager named Sambo Rat; who approached me and his produce manager telling me I can never exchange another watermelon or anything else in that store. I was offended and I turned to him and asked him who was he.  He ran his produce manager up one side and down the other. I guess that was meant for me but Mr. Rat took it out on Gary.

I did not say anything else to the manager nor did the produce manager say anything to him. I couldn’t believe as much as I am in that store, so often most of the people know me by name.  The produce manager said “Mr. Rat is my boss, so that’s why I did not say anything, but I will take care of you anyway.” I said to myself I have never done anything underhanded in this store and I am not going to start now.  I am not going behind the managers back just to get a watermelon. What offended me was he told me I could not exchange anything ELSE in that store.  That led me to write this to my community Monday morning.  I took one of my employees to the store with me to confront the manager, that I had done nothing wrong in his store but he was off for a week. I took the watermelon to show him the watermelon was really bad. Now my plea to my community, is that when you get treated wrongly or become the brunt of bad service. I don’t care who they are, do not reward bad service with tips or compliments. This will only further bad service without the knowledge that they need to makes changes in order to be successful long-term. I have made it in business for over 58 years I have never been confronted with a customer that could not be satisfied after a mistake. Just admit it, and I guarantee you, the customer will come back and you’ll learn something from the experience. In closing,

I guess I would be mad too if I had a name like that.


Willie Morrow