Today, while shopping at a local hipermercado in Sant Cugat, I got busted. Busted by the "Vigilante de Seguridad" for taking pictures in the grocery store.
So, while the store can film me as I shop, I cannot take a picture for my little blog... hmm. I suppose they don't want me to write about all the interesting products I find on their store shelves.
It is really frustrating to not have the same language defense abilities in Spanish that I do in English. I typically do quite well in these types of confrontations. I would love the chance to speak to the manager, but, alas, what would I have said in Spanish?
I am proud however, that asking "por que" jumped out of my mouth before I had a chance to think of a response in English and translate to Spanish. Apparently, taking photographs is prohibited. I quickly retorted with "where is it written? where is the sign?" in Spanish, of course. To which, I have no clue what he told me. Did he tell me that employees might think I stole the camera? Did he tell me I might be a corporate spy? Yes, I flew all the way over from California with my bad Spanish and two kids and a basketful of groceries so I can rip off their wonderful merchandising strategies.
Then all of my bilingual language abilities failed me, and all that came out of my mouth was, "Ud. tiene una problema." Not eloquent at all. Perhaps foreshadowing my new mission to talk to the store manager and corporate public relations department about how my two young children felt scared that their "mommy was getting kicked out of the store and they wouldn't have any food to eat."
** If you don't want anyone to take your picture or film you while at a conference or event, download the picture above, and print out on labels. How funny would it be if there was a campaign of shoppers wearing these stickers?
I am not the only one confronted for taking pictures in a store. Read these interesting blogs for more run-ins with store security. Doesn't "Vigilante de Seguridad" sound more menacing?
- Seth Godin: The Paradox of Pictures
- The Elusive Fish: The No Picture Policy and Customer Service