Thursday, May 13, 2010


“Smile!” you say, leering at me, usually with a camera in hand. “It can’t be that bad!”

No, despite your rank breath it is not that bad - you just happened to catch me at the one millisecond of my day that I thought maybe someone wasn’t staring at me, waiting for me to be less than perfect so they could call me out on it. It is my job to smile, to “spin and grin” as we call it, and I do it gladly. I like my job, as I’ve said before; it isn’t brain surgery, it pays well and I like cars so I’m interested in the material.

What I am not interested in is smiling on cue because you told me to. Despite being a spokesmodel, I am not, in fact, a dancing monkey. No really, look it up - the two are not actually the same thing. I smile because it is my job, true, but just because you happened to catch me taking a whopping five seconds of my day trying to rest my face (fake smiling hurts after a while) does not mean you can be boring. And telling me to smile like that is one of the most boring things I hear all day.

I’d like to see you smile for 10 hours straight while wearing 5-inch heels on a spinning platform while dirty old (and young) men try to snap pictures up your skirt. I dream of smiling while kicking your camera out of your hand. That’s when I smile.

Seriously, give me five seconds to roll my eyes and pick my nose in peace. (Shut up, you know you do it too.)

I do wish some manufacturer would decide that the pissed off punk demographic is where it's at so I could stand on a platform snarling and giving people the finger. Wouldn't that be a fun job? Especially to those jackoffs who change their kids diapers right in front of me.


  1. "Smile!"? They could at least tell you a good joke. :) Have a good one.

  2. Few things are quite so aggravating as having a camera shoved at you and being told to pose on command. I once worked doing field promotions, marketing and merchandising for a major film studio beloved by kids and goofy adults alike. I had to wear a polo that told the world who I represented whenever I was in theatres or retail stores. People (mostly women and children) would see the shirt and suddenly think it was perfectly acceptable to just interrupt my work and pose alongside of me while taking their sweet time snapping pictures. It was odd because: a. I'm not a celebrity, b. I don't live in Hollywood and c. I have nothing to do with the hiring of actors or making of movies.

    Cameras may not steal your soul, but they are certainly capable of snatching a chunk of your dignity.

  3. How do you survive family reunions?

  4. Ugh, I hate it when people do that! I get that ALL THE TIME (and I don't think I'm off base in saying that women probably get told by strangers to smile more often) outside of work, which is even worse since I definitely don't owe them anything in my free time, but it's still annoying when I'm working. The last time someone imperiously demanded that I smile while I was on the clock, I reflexively rolled my eyes when I thought she wasn't looking. She was, and she got HUGELY offended, even after I apologized, since it was rude. I had been nothing but courteous and polite to her before she demanded that I smile. My managers overheard and thought it was hilarious; for the rest of the week whenever I did anything one of them would go "DID YOU JUST ROLL YOUR EYES AT ME? HOW VERY DARE YOU!" and walk off in a huff.

    Even if it IS part of your job description to smile, their world isn't going to fall apart if you take a couple minutes to have a neutral expression on your face. Unless you were scowling and giving everyone the finger, who freakin' cares?

  5. Is it not possible to just ignore them like the bums who ask for spare change? Theoretically, your job job is to explain the car to the cattle walking by. It can't be that hard to turn a blind eye to the one standing around mooing, you probably did it to kids in junior high and have plenty of practice.


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