Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Britney Spears, defused...

It was a classic “I told you so moment.” I am however blessed with a wife who rarely seizes these opportunities. Sue is very uncomfortable when I purchase tickets from scalpers, and does her very best to demonstrate to anybody watching that she is not with me, does not know me. In my defence, we had tried to buy Britney’s Circus tickets legitimately but amazingly Ticketmaster has sold out the Air Canada Centre in less than 15 seconds. We were second in line, but only the first people in line got tickets. Incredible! The ACC seats 19,800 people for a concert.

So, I scalped Britney Spears tickets instead.

Imagine my surprise when I presented them at the entrance and was told the seats were already filled. The tickets were confiscated. I ran outside to confront the scalper…I am angry, my pride is wounded, I am embarrassed. A Katrina of emotions is hurricaning inside me.

But the scalper is gone. The other scalpers circle the wagons….they don’t know where he is, tough luck, that’s what happens sometimes.

The next night, I return to the ACC for Britney’s second show. No, no way will Sue allow me to scalp again. I am just hoping to confront the scalper.

I see him. He is alone. I am going to confront him.

He sees me.

He extends his hand….he wants to shake my hand…he says “Man, I am so sorry about that. Those tickets, really sorry. Do you want your money back, or some other tickets.”

Once I picked my jaw up off the sidewalk, Shannon gave me a set of tickets, we shook hands, he gave me his business card, and we went into the ACC to enjoy the show.

Now, if I see Shannon, he gets all my scalping business (yes, the upside is that Sue still allows me to buy off scalpers for some shows).

A sincere “I am sorry” is a deadly tool in defusing an otherwise awkward customer service situation. I am grateful to Shannon for reminding me of this valuable lesson.

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