“Tales of a Scorched Coffee Pot” — Chapter 97

Jason McGathey
12 min readMay 19, 2022
wholesome but not healthy bulk section

The meeting to hash out their loyalty card program kicks off at 10am on a Wednesday. Gathered around the conference table at Central HQ are all three store managers, assistant managers, anyone else who is considered to be a “key” front end figure — such as Shelly up in Palmyra, or this middle aged woman, Jessie, who was recently moved up front from Central’s grocery department — along with Todd, Edgar, Valerie, and for some reason Tosha, their new-hire onboarding person. She remains as sunny and upbeat as ever, and may have volunteered to attend in the spirit of staying engaged and informed…although Edgar half suspects that Todd earmarked her as “important,” without necessarily learning her role yet, either, and extended the invite himself.

Edgar has experienced a great deal of this bizarre behavior first hand. Well, on any rational level it should be thought of as bizarre, but the truth is, in his experience this has not been all that uncommon in the business world: Todd has thus far asked him approximately zero questions about anything, either. He has issued some directives, sure, for Edgar to figure various things out, though these have ranged from everything directly in his wheelhouse (data, inventory, reporting, pricing related concerns) to those safely outside of it (anything equipment related in the office whatsoever). In the early going he was even telling Edgar to investigate the train-related internet outages, until finally apparently discovering who Felix and Jack were.

This meeting, though, this is a little more like it. Todd told him to put together various proposals on how to pull of this loyalty card business, and he has. As far as Edgar can determine, there are only really 3 feasible options for how they might roll this out — which isn’t to say he likes all of them:

  1. They have a dedicated person or persons at each store who will enter the information on site whenever someone wishes to sign up. The shopper would then have a card that could be activated on the spot, even, with relevant discounts (military, senior) instantly functioning, if applicable. This is by far the most popular option at other retail chains, as far as Edgar is aware. One potential drawback is that they don’t have customer service desks at two of the three locations. At Arcadia you could utilize the smoothie bar…