By Jody Miller
Customer Service Workers revolt. No more happy helpers till you treat us with respect.
A cathartic account of what retail workers experience on a daily basis and what they want the general public to know, that sometimes the customer isn’t always right, sometimes they are just downright abusive and they won’t take it anymore.
This work has been dedicated to all retail workers who somehow managed to survive the past few years of customer craziness.
Performer Meg O’Hara states multiple times that if someone were to write a review about her, she’s the “one with the yellow hair” …. Well here it is, the review about the girl in retail with the yellow hair.
As you enter the room to begin the show you are greeted by customer service worker “Happy helper Meg’’, with a cheery demeanor and blue vest and target lanyard on, as you are quickly established as one of the customers entering her store as she portrays what she later describes as “door bitch”.
The Creator of this work Meg O’Hara who plays herself as ‘Meg’, is a local 27 year old Maitland and Newcastle based theatre maker and actor, whose work tends to revolve around politics, activism, social justice and social commentary as a platform for speaking out about important issues, with the hope to create awareness and societal change through her work.
Meg uses witty comments and innuendos as she hides the names of certain stores she used to work at, comedically using the name throughout the piece as ‘store retracted’. Other comedic moments include her Target song contest with the help of some clever call and response from the audience.
The downfall of this piece came with the nature of the work, a verbatim script about the cruelties of working in retail. I say the nature of the work as naturally, assisted with Meg’s convincing portrayal, it felt like listening to a friend whinge about work for an hour….sometimes comedic…but not enough balance was given to the story telling aspect of the piece and the theatrical elements to devise a true heartfelt story of life in customer service.
It is always a privilege being able to attend a local show written by a young local artist who has devised a piece and acted it herself as a one woman show. My hat goes off to Meg’ whose performance you could tell was passionate and a true lived story as she pumped out all the reasons she has felt uncomfortable and harassed by customers, along with a great list of advice that she leaves the audience with for next time they visit a store, including rule 6 “dickhead – don’t be one”.