Please Don’t Help Me

My doctor wants me to start taking 5g creatine supplements —

Warning.  Creatine occurs naturally in the body and acts to build skeletal muscle.  Do not use creatine in attempt to enhance athletic performance.  Excessive amounts of this substance are known to produce dangerous side effects.  Even modest supplementation can be unsafe for people with certain medical conditions or harmful when combined with common medications.

OK, so my doctor advises me to start with the creatine.  I go by the drugstore and head straight to the vitamin and mineral aisle.  The bottles are ordered alphabetically.  I move directly to the “C” section:

C…  C + E…  C + Rose Hips…  Calcium…  Calcium + D…  Calcium + Magnesium…  Calcium + Magnesium + D…  Chromium Picolinate…  Cod Liver Oil…  CoQ10 —

Suddenly, a clerk interrupts my progress…

Clerk to me:  Can I help you?

Me to Clerk:  I’m looking for creatine.

Clerk to me:  Carotene?

Me to Clerk:  No, creatine.

Clerk to me:  OK, carotene.

Me to Clerk:  No, creatine.  C-R-E-A-T-I-N-E.

Clerk to me:  C-A-R —

Me to Clerk:  No, C-R-E —

Clerk to me:  C-A-R —

I give up and resume reading on my own.  I can read.  All by myself.  Probably better than most.

Was the clerk unaware that her “help” was counterproductive?  Of course, I don’t blame her.  Most shops seem to require their staff to provide this kind of “service”.  But why would the bosses think this behavior is desirable?  If we wanted assistance, we would ask for it.

Just the other day, while reading labels at the Whole Foods, three different clerks approached me a total of five times within the space of about two minutes.  Yes, two of them actually approached me twice.

And it just keeps getting worse.  Earlier today there was a radio spot for Trader Joe’s.  In addition to unsolicited product pitches, their clerks will now be encouraged to make book and movie recommendations.

Two words.  No thanks.

© 2013 Jaclyn Schrier. All rights reserved.

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