Just for light relief, I have started writing down classic “What customers say”
The below is all true.
I am not sure if the Spanish sun affects people, but I seem to get my fair share of odd balls in the office.
Below are just a few examples:
“Alo mate. Tv wont start, the red light flashes. Google says its just the capacitor”. Now, on the bench I have a small pot with old capacitors in it. Label on the pot says “Just capacitors”. So I reach for the pot and give the customer one. “There you go sir, let me know if that works”. Odd silence and look of puzzlement follows normally.
Same applies for resistors and of course. The “FUSE”, Customers come in with a blown fuse and say “you got one of these?”. So, I reach to the pot which is full of obviously blown fuses, nice and blackened. “there you go”, I say.
“My set’s dead, so I think it’s the on off switch”. Can’t help this one…. I have a box of 1950s Wylex porcelain and bakelite light switches. “That’s a bit of luck, I have a replacement, it’s a bit big but works well”.
Mr. Overflow of information
Phone rings. “Yeah, got a Samsung with a common fault”…… Silence. … My last reply was, “oh, is that where the set dematerialises from one side of the room and reappears on the other during East Enders?” … Customer (really happened) “ Ur no, aint done that”.
The Spanish are very tight with the truth.
Chap comes in carrying an old Philips CRT set. I translate…”The TV has no sound”. “Ok”, I say, did the sound go off all of a sudden?” “oh yes” says owner. Later that day, off with the back, to find the speaker is missing and the output IC blown in two. In comes Pedro later and I show him the vacant space. As usual, you are met with a shrug of the shoulders. I said to him that there are robbers going around breaking into peoples’ houses, removing speakers from TVs. Spaniards do not get our humour.
There was the Yorkshire man who spent 3 minutes telling me his DVD player just needed “fettling”. After the repair, he came in to collect it and read the invoice. “Carried out Fettling procedure in accordance with Panasonic tech bulletin 5”. He told me he thought it was that and went off happy.
Customers coming in the Ipads, Tablets, phones etc. that wont do what they should. Now, I have a box of old valves on the desk, big chunky ones, KT88s etc… They come in and ask what the problem was and I cannot resist showing them a valve, saying “it was the picture valve sir”. With something 4 times the size of the tablet, the customer still says thanks and goes off happy.
‘Picture keeps jumping’..
Obviously an issue with the vertical hold ..
Answer ..’have you tried’ putting a heavy table lamp on top of the set’ ?
Just this morning I had a chap come in, and, I even made myself laugh.
He came in and said “I have a Sharp TV in the car” So I said without thinking, “be careful not to cut your fingers on the edges then”. Poor sod stood there looking vacant.
Nice to have customers with a degree of humour. Here, seems not to be the case. Had a similar chap as your skybox guy call me recently. The phone range “hello, zeta services..” The chap said hello sir, you have been shag…g my wife” For once I was quiet. “right” he said, “now Ive got your attention, Ive got a problem with my laptop”. Oh we had a laugh…..
Hello, do you repair TV’s?”
“well my aerial has fallen off the roof, can you come and fix it?”
When I was very much younger, I was asked to go to a house to fix a radiogram. Nice lady came to the door and showed me in to the front room. Record deck running slow, BSR, needed oiling. Fine. Then knock at the door. She asked me if I wouldn’t mind keeping quiet whilst I was working n the gram as she had a “customer”. She would be done in 20 mins. Being young, I didn’t know quite what was meant, but eventually put 2 and 2 together. Anyway, got the set working and rummaged around in the 45 stack and came across Honky Tonk Women. Well, couldn’t resist putting it on. When the lady came in the room she smiled and called me naughty. She asked how much the repair was and she paid. Then she gave me a 5 pound note, saying it was a tip. I refused saying it was far too much. She then said it wasn’t from her, but from her “customer” who had found things more exciting knowing there was someone listening!! True.
Was called to a private old peoples rest home to look at a juke box. A nice 1956 Wurlitzer 2000. With my head in the back, trying to remove the amp and PSU, I was aware of sound of running water. I thought someone was pouring a cup of tea. I looked round and saw an elderly gent standing in front of my tool case weeing in it! I can’t quite recall what I shouted but a nurse wandered up saying “oh so sorry, Mr. Johnson does get confused”. Ill give me f…g confused i think I said. My Fluke was never the after. Again, true.
A Monday afternoon get your own back.
Cust. Right, bought my telly in 2 weeks ago and the sounds gone again.
me. Whats the name?
me. No, your name please or the invoice number.
cust. Jeff. 302114, you tucked me up 80€
me. Strange, that invoice number is not one of mine, are you sure you brought it to me?
cust. Well its got your sticker on the back.
me. Ah good, whats the number on the sticker?
Me. After a quick look up, That refers to a repair 2 years ago, where I changed a gamma correction chip co the picture was negative. Whereabouts did you take the set recently?
cust. you guys, the shop on the coast.
me. Ah. I think you took it to Ponce in Mojacar didn’t you? that’s not me.
cuts. Its all the same init? if I bring it to you, you fix it and get the money from that lot?
me. Doesnt really work like that does it???
cuts. Well they don’t speak English.
me. well that’s because they are a Spanish company in Spain and you have not bothered to learn the lingo. Im 54 and probably have not got enough years left to carry on our conversation. Bring me the set if you want.
Had to write this one up as it shows how the internet search engines can get it wrong.
Keep in mind my website is quite specific, TVs, HiFi, etc…..
So, phone call to the office.
Cust. Oh, good morning, don’t know if you can help, but im having trouble with my turntable.
Me. Ok, what’s up with it?
Cust. well, its not turning.
me. Is it part of a large system or stand alone?
cust. Bloody big.
me. Ok is it a belt drive or direct, what make is it?
cust. No idea of the make. Not belt drive, all gear driven.
me. Thats strange. Best pop it in to the office and ill have a look.
cust. You having a laugh, ill need a f…ing 7 ton truck.
me. what are we taliking about here?
cust. Its a lorry turntable. Lorries come in, unload and the table turns them round to save driving and reversing.
me. And you got me details off the net?? I fix record player turntables. Not what you have.
“good morning, is that the tv fixer bloke at Zeta?”
“I have a LG TV that doesn’t seem to start when its cold”
OK, bring it in, probably needs a set of plugs and a distributor cap and rota arm.
“ok, roughly how much would that be?”
Nice start to the day.
Just for light amusement….
Woman came in today to collect here microwave. Grumbling about the small ants that she gets in her kitchen. Told her to turn the microwave on but open the door for 2 mins. Then the microwaves will spill on the floor and kill the ants. Oh she said, that’s a good idea. I asked her if she had a cat, be careful it doesn’t burn its paws. No she said, I have a parrot, will that be ok? I said sure, if its in a cage made by a company called Faraday, it will be good. Ok, she said, Ill check.
Have to say that I get a good share of customer wanting to know what the fault is so they can go off and buy parts openly from Flatparts lets say. I make a judgement call on a customer by customer basis. You get to see what they are after, then I ask for an inspection fee. Often get phone calls where the customer tells you what’s wrong and asks if you know what the fault is and how much would it cost. I now these guys are fishing for a remote diagnostic check then buy the bits. Had one set in and the customer was insistent that I confirmed what was wrong and wanted it back after as he couldn’t afford the fix at the moment. Checked the set with a 2nd hand power supply and entered a security pin. Gave him the set back as he required. 2 weeks later, another call from someone else with the same model set asking if i could talk him through removing the security code. Has to be done.
Is it me?? Really.
I seem to get more than my share of twat customers.
An example yesterday:
Mr. Total Axxxxxe walks in with a JVC LCD set. “morning mate, look at my telly, the remote doesn’t work”. Ok I said, ill book it in. ” You have the remote?” “No, I didn’t think you would need it”. “Ok, well how do you suggest I test and fix it, if I don’t have it here?” “Oh, spose ill have to go back home and get it”. Well I said, Its up to you.
2 hours later, he turns up with the remote. ” here ya go mate”. “thanks” I said. I looked and there were no batteries. I asked the chap if he knew that the batteries were missing. he said”Oh, I took them out”. “Any reason?” I said. “Not really” he said. I told him to nip across the road to the supermarket and get a pack of AAAs. “Got me running around a bit avnt ya” says he.
Now, my name is Seth Pittham. I hate both Christian and sir names. They dont travel over the phone well and i get called all sorts. A “lady” came into the shop last week. I say lady, she looked like she could kick start 747s. She was clutching the page out of a mag that I write articles in and advertise….10% off if you bring the page in with you. This is how the conv. went. Lady “Hello, you must be Stiff” Trying to bite my lip I said “well, its a bit early in the morning but give me half an hour or so”. Lady “er?” “never mind, my name is seth, its a bit difficult” I said. she said “anyway, do you sell car batteries?”….. Fresh out this morning was all i could say.
I think it is me being over sensitive.
They walk amongst us.
Mr. Knobby came in a few days ago.
Allo mate, I need one of these..
This was a 150uF 100v odd cap. All swollen and burst.
Ah, I said. Has that come from a LG plasma, the board on the RHS?
Yeah, that’s right, my mate said it needs changing.
Ok, I said, it’s a SUS board and the fault is not with the capacitator as you say, but the IPM. I can sell you the part, but you will need a net with it.
A net? Says bloke.
Yes, I said, when you fit it and turn the set on, it will go pop again and the can will fly off. The net will help you catch it.
No, I bet you want the job, ill do it.
Fine. 5 € please.
Next morning…….. That capacitator you sold be went bang. It must have been duff…..
Made me smile this morning.
“Hello, i hear you fix things. My sky box says technical fault when I try and record”
Ok I said, it sounds like a hard drive fault. Let me have a look and bring the viewing card with you that’s in the box.
“Ok. Do I need to bring the sky box in to you?”
……… well if you want me to fix it, it would probably be a good idea. Or you could send me a picture of the faulty box and ill send you one of a working box.
“Oh, how does that work then?”
Interesting one for a Friday morning.
“Allo mate, my friend says you are a technical mechanic?”
“Will I do try”
Can you have a look at my son’s trombone. Be broke the pipe from the the bell thing at the end that goes to where the push button are?
” I will see if I can solder it for you….
“Good morning, I have an LG plasma TV and in the evenings when its dark, on dim scenes, I can see little red and green twinkles, stars on the screen”.
Ah, I said, This time of the year when it’s clear, you will see the stars coming out. If it’s cloudy, you won’t see them”
Before I could say any more, the cap said “oh that’s fine, I thought it may be fault, bye” and put tye phone down. Another happy customer.
You learn something new each day..
“Hello, I have a Samsung plasma or something, and the picture is very very dark and fuzzy. My friend who had a TV shop in the ’60s says it needs a new ionizer”
“Ummm, I am not sure of a set having an ionizer, can you give me the model number please? “
“It seems quite simple to me, It just needs an ionizer, can you get one?”
Why bother… “Yes I said, I have both Mk 1 and Mk2s in stock, bring me the TV”
“Oh, I have to bring the set to you?”
“Yes, or there is a call out charge”
“It’s just getting worse isn’t it?”
“Not for me” I said.
Ex Pats thinking in Spain.
Had a call from an air con engineer I do repairs for. “Just given your number to someone who I have just changed an AC system for…you’ll have fun”
Phone goes and a woman said ” hello, Ive got a 32″ Grundig TV, and when its been on for 5 mins, the sound starts to go funny. Its too big to carry, can you come out?”.
I went out to be confronted by an old 32″ CRT Grundig. The tube as knackered, she watched it with the blinds down. She said “I don’t have much money, just spent 500€ an my air con”. Now, the reason why she had to replace the air con, was that she had the TV placed under it to cool the TV down so the sound would be ok!. I asked her how long has this been going on….”2 years”.
As luck would happen, it was the 18mhz xtl in the dolby cct. I had one and fitted it. All fine.
I sat down with her and on a scrap of paper worked out how much she had spent on elec running the AC, plus the 500€ for replacing the compressor. I said you could have bought 3 flat screens by now. “oh, I didn’t want to spend money on the TV.
Customer popped his head in the door just now and said “Those woofer valves you put in my fan are still working”
Sorry I said.
The woofer valves you put in my ceiling fan.
Totally at a loss, after a while I said “Capacitors”
That’s right he said.
So there we go. My new name for capacitors now.
What customers say.
This made me laugh today… A woman came into the shop and said “Do you do call outs to fix electric ovens?” I said no, I’ve done a few in the past, but always got my fingers burnt. “ok” she said and walked out.
Sunday evening…. Call from a UK mobile….( I am in Spain, so get the cost of calling back) ” hello, my fridge has stopped working, the freezer is ok though”. No sorry to bother you etc.. After several questions, I asked her what make it was. “I don’t know, I’m from Yorkshire” What the F am I sposed to say to that???
one thing that really annoys me. Customers coming in, asking if they can use my loo.
Generally I say no. However the other day a man and woman came in with a small cheap TV. The lady stood there holding her tummy and asked for the loo. This time i said yes as I was worried that I might have an additional problem to clear up. Later that I i popped into the loo only to find she had not flushed it, leaving me a couple of pressies.
I did the repair and entered a line on the invoice ROTSTs 5€
The husband came in and collected his TV. He looked at the invoice, thanked me and asked “what kind of component is a ROTST?” I told him it was the Removal of Two Small Turds, as your wife didnt flush the loo after she used it. Oh he said.
Don’t you just know that the first job on a Monday morning is likely to set the tone for the week’s work?????
Xbox360 comes in. Lady says “the CD wont come out and now it’s not reading it”
I booked it in them moved it from the shelf. As I tipped it forward, drips of something came from underneath. Asking the customer if anyone has done anything, “Oh yeah, my husband sprayed a load of WD40 inside”.
Had a bloke this morning asking if I supplied samsung TV capacitors. Google told him they needed changing, he had the back off, saw some with bulging tops. Told him I didn’t sell parts. He asked why, I must of had them if I repair sets. “They don’t cost much, I checked” . Fine I said, also check the eeprom as well? What’s that? I said ask google. I said to him if he wanted, i would leave the keys to the workshop under the mat and he can do the set when he wanted. And some people say I am unhelpful???
A couple of things today that made me want to say naughty words today……
Customer calls “Oh hello. Are you qualified to service and repair a Viscount electronic church organ, situated in the Anglican church in Mojacar?”. So, I had to reply…..”Let me just check my C&G qualifications a minute…. Although i have been in this stupid business for 45 years, servicing everything from bath time toys to GCHQ encryption systems, it is important to me that I have the right paperwork…. Ah…I see that I am legally allowed to service this equipment in Spain, but there is an exclusivity clause to say that Juan Pedro Gimenez the 2nd has the rights over Mojacar. So very sorry, I revert you to the good lord above”. I heard nothing further.
Phone rings…”Oh good day,… Are you in your little workshop this morning?” Patronising bastard I thought. I replied..”Indeed I am, if I sound a little quiet, it is because I am talking on a little telephone, doing little jobs for little money. Do you have a little fault or is it big? If it’s the latter, I cannot help and suggest you take it to a grown up repair person” “Oh have I offended you?”….”let me think of a little reply”.
Thursday morning delight…..
“Allo mate, got a LG telly in me car, the starter switch has gone, you know, those white things you put in ya kitchen light. Keeps clicking, so its only a small thing”. Isn’t it nice to have customers that give you as much information and help as possible. Just think of the time I would have wasted, fixing the PSU?
Chap comes in…”Morning, I was wondering if you had a chance to look at my Humax box?” Yes, its fixed, I have tried to call several times, but your mobile just rings out and sent you a text last week…… “Oh I hate mobiles, I never answer it in case its a Spanish person, cant do the text thing”. OK. Ill take your full address and Ill try paranormal remote viewing next time. “Ok, is that an app for the phone?”
How do these people dress themselves in the morning?
Oh we did have a laugh today.
Customer in yesterday, one of the nicer ones. Had an older Toshiba LCD that he got 2nd hand. Picture over contrast so thought a15F etc… but no. So got into the engineers menu and started changing some of the settings, eventually got a reasonable picture.
I then saw a setting to turn the image upside down. Now, not having grown up, I flipped the setting and called customer to say set was done.
I had a contractor in the shop who was briefed. Customer came in and I asked him if he wanted to see the set on. Sure he said. It took him 30 seconds before he said “the pictures upside down”. Dont think so, i sad. Contractor looked over and piped up saying what’s wrong with that. Managed to keep it going for about 5 mins. Customer by this time was going mad and thought he had a stroke or something. At that point I started laughing and he called me a series of very rude words. The joke bit me on the arse to a degree, cos it took me ages to gain access to the engineers menu and to find the setting. Should have videoed it and popped it on youtube.
Bet you wish you had as much fun as i do!
“Oh, good morning, could you tell me how I can tell if I have a Smart TV?”
Sure I said, It normally comes with a shirt and tie.
“Oh, ok, ill check and call you back if needed. thanks”.
I thought it was funny for 09.00 Wed morning.
“aallo mate, told you fix guitar amps. Got a Marshall, sounds orrid when i play my guitar through it”.
Well, I said, tune your guitar and practice more.
“Funny c..t” He put the phone down. How hurtful.