Car Salesman & The Priesthood

car-salesmanThe sales guy sits behind a desk for 10-12 hours a day with split days offs.  He waits for someone to come the showroom.  Sales guy once went looking for “someones” but that didn’t work, the method now is to patiently sit behind his desk but making sure he looks busy and overworked at his computer.

A “someone” walks in acting aloof but hoping for an interruption from the sales guy.  He easily approaches “someone” with a beaming smile and extended hand to show a new bond has occurred.  Questions from the “someone” vary from the mundane to even further down from mundane.  He’s already answered them for himself years ago but pretends he’s hearing those questions for the first time.

“Someone” is car shopping and did a little homework online but now wishes to learn more.  “Impress me,” the “someone’s” eyes says to the sales guy when his eyes never leaves “someone.”  “What are you interested in?” says sales guy who’s now happy to at least stretch his legs for a while.  “Something economy?” says “someone” who wishes to only attend religious services at Easter and Christmas and not be bothered with the rest of the year.  “There’s a luxury model available,” says the sales guy because commission is greater and he hopes to begin at the top and then work the way down to that economy car.  “Too much investment,” says “someone” silently as though it’s a lifetime of monastic life or a total commitment to family and friends.  “There’s always midsize,” says the sales guy because then it only means that twice a year religious visit with an option for emergency help.

So now the game begins.

Sales guy cannot make a decision if his life depends on it.  Sales guy needs to consult Sales manager guy (someone who “someone” will never met but only hear about) and “someone” needs to wait for the sales guy to talk to Sales manager guy for an answer.

Waiting can take a long time with each inquiry and waiting becomes even longer when “someone’s” been sufficiently caffeinated by the sales guy.  Each of “someone’s” question receives sales guy’s smiling responses, “I’ll only be a moment,” “I’ll get back to you on that,” “That’s a good question, can you give me a minute,?” “Would you like some more coffee,?” “I need to check on that for you,” “You’re the first one to ask us that question.”   “Someone” would like to peek in the window to see the background workings of this place between the sales guy seen and the never-seen Sales manager.  “Are they just waiting for me to break? “someone” thinks.  “Are they telling jokes to each other?” is another of his thoughts. “Someone” thinks to himself, “I sure hope I don’t have any more questions, it takes forever to get one answer?” and “Why doesn’t Sales manager guy just take care of me and save this place money and dump the sales guy?”

Sales guy returns to “someone” looking fitter than before because of his frequent walks to Sales manager guy and presents a piece of paper to “someone” in a quadrangle presentation of choices featuring economy, midsize, luxury and “just leaving the car lot now.”

“Someone” thinks for a while but decides to “just leave the car lot” but “someone” enjoyed the coffee and asking all of his questions.  The sales guy returns to his lonely desk wondering what just happened.  Sales manager guy thinks to himself, “I would at least have pick the economy car.”

What’s next?  “Someone” will surely look for another dealership next week, next month or in ten years and ask the same questions all over again.

And all the time no one considered the sticker price.

About Rev. Joe Jagodensky, SDS.

A Roman Catholic priest since 1980 and a member of the Society of the Divine Savior (Salvatorians). Six books on the Catholic church and U.S. culture are available on
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