Friday, July 15, 2005

General Nitwit Center

After lunch today, I made a quick stop to the local GNC to restock on some items that I was getting low on. I entered the shop and was immediately greeted by the sales clerk behind the desk - a late 40's woman who in my opinion was overly lean and a bit too enthusiastic with her "Can I help you today?"

"No thanks, I'm pretty sure I can find what I'm looking for." After all, I can read. Couple that with the fact that I've been to GNC several times before and you can rest assured that I am not your typical dazed and confused nutritional supplement consumer.

I walked back to the protein powder section and found exactly what I was looking for. Six pounds of generic GNC-branded whey protein. I have a container of the stuff at home with but a scant few servings left.

As I carried the protein towards the front of the store, the clerk looked at what I was carrying and said with a smirk, "You're not STILL using that stuff, are you?"


"Haven't you heard of blah, blah, blah brand?"

"No, I'm not too particular about protein powder."

"Well let me mix you up some of this blah, blah, blah brand."

Begrudgingly, I said "OK. I'll try it." The clerk immediately began her marketing pitch and I did my best to drown it out. She began pouring some milk into a blender and I had to interrupt to tell her milk was a no-go for me.

"You can't have milk? Any milk at all?"

"Um, no. I can't." I was thinking I'd tell her about the gastro-intenstinal distress I'd experience not soon after ingesting her little conconction, but I didn't want to even spend the energy.

"Do you put peanut butter in your shakes?"

"No, I generally don't."

"Well I'll put some in this, it's great!"

Aw hell, why don't you throw in a slice of pizza too. Perhaps a slice of chocolate cake? I bet that will make your little blah, blah, blah-brand of protein taste fantastic.

I walked away as she was mixing it so I could go find some Stacker 3. It's a bummer that all the fat-burning stuff is all ephedra-free now, but I need a little boost of something now and again to make it through my five day a week regimen.

Finally, the clerk found her way back to me and handed me a dixie cup full of her shake. A dixie cup? A fucking dixie cup? You went through all that rigamaroll and gave me a fucking dixie cup sized protein shake. What a jopke.

No sooner had I swallowed her peanut butter and protein, tablespoon-sized shake when she took a look at the bottle of Stacker 3 I had grabbed.

"Oh no, you don't want that! This stuff is...."

It was then her conversation lapsed into a series of cracks and buzzes. Like a microphone piped to a faulty public address system, her words were lost to me. I gazed at her face, but my eyes were focused well beyond to a near infinite horizon. I wondered what training she went through that instructed her to insult her clients choices of supplements.

As soon as her mouth stopped moving, it was as if I was snapped back to consciousness by a hypnotist telling me "You are now fully awake."

"Thanks, but I'll simply take what I've got please." I prayed that this would end the sales pitch.


It worked! I couldn't even make eye contact at the register while I awaited my credit card to be approved. If I did, it may have triggered some more futile attempts at product conversion.

Sadly, I had to put that particular GNC on my "Do not visit" list of stores. It's just too tiring for me to put up with that when I know exactly what I want and want to get out of there in under 5 minutes.

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