My newfound popularity is stunning. Everywhere I go people ask for my opinion. It’s fascinating how people I barely know—even giant corporations and conglomerates—are so interested in what I think.
Every time I leave the post office, the clerk behind the counter hands me a receipt, circles a website, asks me to visit it and tell about my experience. I came, they weighed, I paid. What more is there to say?
A while back, I sliced my finger with a butcher knife and wound up at an Urgent Care. We are now best friends, although my new bestie seems a little insecure. “How were you greeted? Did you wait long? How was the care you received? Were you pleased with the follow-up?” That sort of insecurity is concerning, especially coming from a medical clinic.
A few weeks ago, I had a mammogram and now keep getting emails asking if I would take a short survey telling them about the experience. I don’t need to fill out a 20-question survey to tell them about the experience. I can tell them in one word—painful.
Retail clerks at stores often ask, “Email?” as I check out. I always say, “No thank you,” but “no, thank you” implies you are refusing an offer, and it’s not an offer—it’s a request bordering on demand. I’m often tempted to say, “I’ll give you mine, if you’ll give me yours.” Whatever happened to stranger danger?
A lot of places want more than telephone numbers and email addresses. They want a “relationship”—silver, gold, platinum, take your pick. These “relationships” create more online accounts with more logins and passwords, many of which translate into more loyalty cards dangling from my key ring, and all of which will enable me to get even more text alerts, emails, digital coupons and perks.
If I am feeling like the relationship isn’t all it should be, I can download an app on my phone so we can be in even closer contact. Should I want to check my cell phone at 2 a.m. to see if my status has been upgraded, or if someone is waiting for my opinion, or if new offers, coupons and cash rewards have fattened my online wallet, I’m good to go.
Every business phone call ends with, “Please stay on the line to take a brief survey.”
Take an Uber, rate the driver and the driver rates you.
Stay at an Airbnb or Vrbo and you rate the rental and the host, and the host rates you.
Buy a used book online and it arrives with a web address asking you to rate the seller.
We are in a rating frenzy.
I rate it “exhausting.”