Yeah, not exactly where you are supposed to park your car but it works for now so why not?
Some weeks ago my gym membership was up for renewal. After a long discussion including some inappropriate talk about my boyfriend, I finally bought a new card.
However, when I some days later went for a work out and handed over my card to the reception girl who scanned it, she looked at me and said:
-Sorry, your card has expired.
-Must be some mistake? I said. I just bought a new one!
-Ah, OK! The girl said and handed the card back to me with one hand, meanwhile waving me through with her other hand.
“Ah, it probably hasn’t gone through yet!” I thought, and went in.
However, the next time I arrive the same story repeated itself.
-Your card has expired!
-That’s impossible, I just bought a new one!
-Ah, OK, well then you can go through!
When this had happened 4 times I realized that it wasn’t going to change until I decided to do something about it. The reception girls seemed happy with first telling me off, and then waving me through as soon as I provided them with an explanation. I didn’t feel like having to explain myself every time I went for a workout though, and also, I’d just bought a new membership card. This really shouldn’t be happening.
So yesterday I brought my membership receipt.
I arrived just before peek hour was about to kick in, so all the reception girls (a total of 10) were at the counter, greeting me with a “Welcome!” as soon as I stepped out of the elevator.
“Excellent, they are all here!” I thought.
I handed over my card and one girl scanned it.
-Sorry, your card has expired, she said.
-Yeah, but there must be some sort of mistake, I said, and handed over the receipt. I just renewed my membership card so it cannot have expired.
-Oh! The girl looked at the receipt then handed me my card back.
-OK, you can go in!
-Yeah but… like… don’t you want to… do something about this?
-No, it’s OK, you can go in!
-But… every time I get here you guys tell me my card has expired!
-It is OK! We know now it hasn’t.
-Yes, but your computer doesn’t know! Every time I get here this situation repeats itself!
-But now we know!
-Yeah but I don’t want to have to tell you every time that I just renewed my membership!
-But now we all know!
At this point I was really annoyed.
-Can’t you just change it in your computer? Something has obviously gone wrong when I renewed my membership!
-I promise you! We will all remember!
I was furious when I eventually went to the changing room. As if they are all going to remember. I bet you 1000 rmb that the next time someone scans my card she is going to tell me it has expired.
Maybe it was so that their computer was broken, or that they for some reason were too busy to fix it at the spot (although seriously… 10 girls behind the counter. One of them held my card. The other 9 watched. And I can swear that I heard 7 of them giggling) but then, then why didn’t they just tell me?! They could have done it in so many way. They could have told me that they were going to solve it some other day even. Anything. Just anything but ignoring it. Their whole attitude: “OK, fine for now!” is just not doing it for me. Why do I feel that over here, people often treat the symptom and not the problem? They solve things temporarily, although the real big problem is just swept under the carpet.
It’s like at a friends company where the product they produce is painted by a machine. Suddenly someone discovered that a little part of the product didn’t get painted. How did they solve things? Well, by hiring someone who could paint that little part of every product of course. How about changing the machine? Naaaah, too much trouble. Let’s fix it the quick way instead.