Frank Workman: A Story For This Super Bowl

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Frank Workman
Photo by Wayne Pridemore
By Frank Workman

It was 20+ years ago, in the pre-Amazon days, and my old turntable had become obsolete. We needed something to play CDs, nothing fancy, and I went to the local Best Buy store for the first (and last) time.

I walked in and saw the store was huge. Music was blaring and colored lights were flashing on-and-off. It was very disorienting, to say the least.

Fortunately there was an employee near the door who must have sensed my bewilderment, and he asked what I was looking for. When I told him, he pointed in the general direction of the far corner of the store and said these words - “Go to the usher.”

“Hmmm”, I thought, as I ambled through the aisles. Best Buy has ushers.

I marveled at the inventive ways companies have of identifying their employees. I recalled how, when I was (ahem) assistant manager at Polly’s Pie Palace the geniuses in management decided to upgrade the title of the young guys who cleared off tables. They went from ‘busboys’ to ‘Customer Service Coordinators’. (It was probably a case of either giving them a ten-cent raise or a fancy-pants title.)

Garbage collectors have long ago been upgraded to ‘Sanitation Engineers’.

I was thinking of other places that have ushers. Ballparks and weddings, for sure. Theaters and playhouses, too.

I made it to the far corner and waited. And waited. Maybe five minutes. Not an usher in sight.

I went back to the front of the store, to see the guy who’d sent me to the usher. When I told him I didn’t see an usher back there, he laughed at me.

He pointed out various banners of entertainers that hung from the high ceiling. He explained that the banner in the far corner was somebody named Usher. As if I, then in my fifties, should have been expected to know the latest musical flavor-of-the-month.

To this day, if I’m in an unfamiliar store and don’t want to waste time wandering aimlessly, I will, at risk of violating the terms and agreements of my Man Card, ask for directions.

More often than not, that employee will walk me to the item I’m looking for. That’s a store that just earned my business.

By the way……did you hear who’s performing at halftime of the Super Bowl?


Anonymous,  February 10, 2024 at 10:02 AM  

I love it Frank. Kind of the way I feel. Hope to see more from this Frank Workman guy. Thanks, Don Jensen

Anonymous,  February 10, 2024 at 6:58 PM  

Frank is FUNNY- wish he still announced for Shoreline sports!

Anonymous,  February 11, 2024 at 7:18 PM  

Thanks, Frank - has always been great to read your comments and insights for many years while you were up this way.

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