“Flowers are the sweetest things God ever made, and forgot to put a soul into.” ~Henry Beecher

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

What's Your Angle?

The other day, I went to New York to see the Yankees play the Kansas City Royals. My mom is in love with Derek Jeter, so for Mother’s Day this year, we got her two tickets to see him (and his team) play. Since my dad didn’t want to go, she took me. I was thrilled to go because I wanted to see the new Yankee Stadium and it gave me a chance to hang out with Mom. Plus I feel that the experience of being at a game is so much different from watching it on TV.

We had planned that when we got there, we would have lunch and then enjoy the game. It was hot and sticky outside and I felt like having something light and refreshing, but all we could find were burgers, fries, pizza, etc., and there was at least an hour wait at the restaurants. So we settled on grilled vegetable paninis that were pretty good, just heavier than I had wanted. After we had finished eating, I spotted a woman with a clipboard. I walked up to her to ask her a question and also learned that she was taking a survey about the food. I thought, this is a great opportunity to tell her how I feel. Just as I was about to talk with her, another woman approached her in a very huffy manner and began complaining about the food and the management. I was a bit surprised by her attitude and even more surprised by how long she carried on with her tirade. The poor woman that was working didn’t know what to do and finally two other women working at a cart tried to come to her rescue. I waited patiently until finally the woman with the clipboard somehow made her exit, approached us, and apologized for the unpleasant exchange.

OK, it was my turn. She asked us about our meal and the service. I told her the food was good and that the service was good as well. Actually, the gentleman who served us made us laugh so we walked away from the counter with big smiles on our faces. In fact, everyone who worked there was helpful and pleasant and made us feel comfortable, but I’m digressing. I went on to explain to her that the food was fine, but that I would like to see more healthy options for food at the stadium. She then invited me to fill out the survey, which I did, and then we parted very pleasantly.

Later, I thought about the differences between my encounter with the woman taking surveys and the woman before me. Both of us were essentially saying that we would like things to be different, yet we did it in very different ways. The woman before me went on very aggressively about what she didn’t like and what she believed was wrong and she took every opportunity to be insulting. I didn’t do that at all. I had no reason to and I never would anyway. I simply suggested things that I would like to see on the menu. Judging from the reaction to my angle versus the other woman’s, I would say that in situations like these, a positive attitude is taken more seriously than a negative one. Yes, there are cases where it’s the squeaky wheel that gets the grease–but I believe it’s often to simply silence the squeak. I don't know what happened with the woman's complaint and I really don't want to. As for my suggestion, will I be purchasing fresh fruit smoothies and vegetable juices at Yankee Stadium someday? Don’t know. But I have no regrets filling out the survey and making the suggestions.


  1. I think most times the person with the respectful opinion will be heard much louder than the ranting person. We don't need to be mean and insulting to get our point across. Good job, Linda!

    And I hope you had a good time with your mom. Did the Yankees win for her that day? I like Jeter too!

  2. Hi Kathy,
    I agree, people generally want to listen to people that are reasonable and I felt that way while I was taking the survey. We did have a good time. The Yankees did win and Derek Jeter made her proud : )