Saturday, November 21, 2009

why fatted calf has lost a fan

i went back and forth all morning on whether or not to write about this.

yet, it is obviously still bothering me and i have decided to just "get it out" so that i can get back to working on one of my work projects.

i try to avoid the saturday berekely farmers market because of the crowds. i usually go to the thursday market...right when it opens. yet, there are three vendors that appear at saturday's market that i will make a special trip for....for the sole purpose of visiting them and they are 1) blue bottle 2)art davis and 3) fatted calf. when i go to this market, i am not a "looky loo". i go to buy.

after today, there are two vendors rather than three that i will make special visit to the saturday berkeley farmers market for. previously, i liked visiting fatted calf as they make, what i think is the best beef jerky i have ever tasted. i have bought quite a bit of beef jerky from fatted calf....particularly as presents for loved ones and up until today, was a fan.

what happened to change the foodie hunter's perspective?

today, i went to their booth (which is deep into the crowded market btw) and there was 1 other customer at the booth. there were two people, a guy and a gal, working in the booth. both folks had initial attention on this customer but the guy was the one that was primarily helping the customer out. i picked out two packages of the beef jerky which equaled to just over $20 and i had cash in hand. so keep this in mind...i had one hand with the product and the other hand with the cash. i didn't think anything of both of them helping that one customer especially when i heard that they were pitching ryan farr's chicarrones. i am a big fan of ryan farr's 4505 meats....and those of you who have read my blog or are regular visitors to my flickr page know this. also, i have purchased many a bag of those delicious chicarrones for loved ones and i adore those "zilla style" hot dogs he does. so i didn't have any issues waiting. if they could convert another fan to what ryan farr is doing...i'm all for it. then, when the gal stopped pitching and started puttering around the booth, i thought it was kinda odd. but again, didn't think anything of it. then she took this gallon size zip lock bag and started folding it. again, i thought, ok...this is kinda odd that i'm standing here with cash and product waiting to buy and she isn't saying anything....

cuz, it wasn't like the booth is crowded.

there are two customers.

the one customer that was being helped and me.

so it isn't like she didn't see me.

then, a couple of guys approach the booth and she stops what she is doing and says "can i help you?"

in that split moment, i felt some major anger.

i mean, WTF?

you can't help me....but you ask if you can help two guys that approach the booth after i have been standing there....with cash in one hand and product in another?

i almost dropped the packages of beef jerky back into the basket and walked off. then the guy (who wasn't even 100% done with the customer he was working with) looks at me and says "will that be all for you?"

i'm guessing that he was trying to save the situation.

if he hadn't said that exact moment...then i wouldn't have bought the jerky.

yet, it wasn't enough to for me to take pics of the jerky, post it on flickr, let folks know about it via twitter, post the pics on an online food-oriented picture guide (which was going to do and let people know it was the best beef jerky i have ever tasted), and write about how much i was looking forward to tasting it in this blog.

now, the jerky is in my kitchen. it is hours later and i am still pretty pissed off.

i had originally thought about giving one to the best friend as a present this evening as a treat and keeping the other one for myself. i will probably still give it to the best friend but i think i may be trashing mine.

because, for me, food is not just about is also the emotional connection i have with food...and for me, my connection with fatted calf's products has been tainted from today's experience. i mean, i will be patient for various levels of service....especially, if i see a vendor is busy....but when a vendor isn't busy and consciously takes actions that i think are unfair....then, yeah, that is going to piss me off.

wouldn't that piss you off?

so yeah, the foodie hunter isn't going to be buying any more fatted calf products in the foreseeable future and fatted calf has lost a fan.


Su-Lin said...

OMG, I would have been FUMING. And shooting daggers out of my eyes. Yeah. Exactly what did the girl think she was going to accomplish by ignoring you?

foodie hunter said...

yeah, i'm not certain what was going on. :(

foodie hunter said...

This is a comment that isn't showing up via the page for some reason but showed up in my email:

"Christine has left a new comment on your post "why fatted calf has lost a fan":

Okay, in situations like that, I am direct, instead of fuming about it later. I come right out and say, Excuse me,I would like to pay for these. That way, the person cannot ignore you.
Part of the burden is on us to speak up. Maybe the person in the booth will realize that they were being rude, but if we never say anything, they will keep on."


And this is my response:

Thanks for the comment Christine.

Yes, I am usually quite direct as well and have no problem or issue speaking for myself if I am think that I am being ignored or rudely treated. In this particular case, as I indicated in the blog, I was willing to be patient and not say anything because they were discussing a product that I am a fan of. Then when the gal started fiddling with the bag, I was also in a state of disbelief that it was even happening. I would have said something if the guy hadn't interjected to help me when the other guys approached. In the past, I have done this at other stores and clearly stated that "I am next".

So yes, I clearly understand my responsibility. I also clearly understand that it is the responsibility of vendors not be rude.

I also have the right to fume about it later.

There have been instances in the past where I have addressed this sort of issue directly and still be angry later.

Perhaps you did not intend your comment to be communicated and interpreted as such, but I have obviously interpreted your comment as being judgmental.