Dear Heloise: Regarding your question about salespeople, as a salesperson, I have some suggestions:

* When I greet you, please have the courtesy to acknowledge me.

* Keep food and drinks out of the store. Merchandise, carpeting, etc., can get ruined.

* Escalators are machinery, not a toy. People stand by as kids go up and down. Kids can get hurt!

* Carry your charge card with you. We waste a lot of time looking up accounts.

* Carry ID in case you are asked for it. I don’t know who you are.

* When buying gifts, know the person’s size. Don’t come in and try to guess.

* All tags should be left on merchandise until you are sure you are keeping the item.

* Please don’t use your cellphone when with a salesperson. Rude, rude, rude.

* If someone helps you, make sure to give that person credit for the sale.

* Don’t give me a $50 or $100 bill for a small purchase.

Thank you for letting me vent. I feel better. -- A Frustrated Salesperson in Ohio

Thanks for your input. Salespeople have inside information, and expertise can really help! Read on for more great info, from Kay C. of Norfolk, Neb.:

“I work in a major store chain, and here is a list of what clerks want from their customers:

“1. Respect. We are there to make your shopping pleasant, but we are not your sounding board. Don’t get mad at us if you are having a bad day. As they say, you get what you give.

“2. If you take a pair of jeans off the shelf folded, put them back the same way.

“3. Please don’t return something in January that you bought in June. We (the clerks) don’t make the rules, the company does, but we do have to enforce them. If you don’t like that policy, contact the company, but don’t chew me out.

“This is a small list of things we would like. I, for one, feel everyone should have to work retail for six months. I can assure you, if people did, the next time they went into a store, they would be a little more pleasant, and they would be a bit more respectful to the staff and the merchandise.”

-- Heloise

CLOSE KID

Dear Heloise: When my daughter was a very small child, I would park the car close to a cart return, whenever there was one available.

In doing so, I could place her in her car seat and lock the car when loading groceries or other packages into the trunk. I would never have to worry about her being out of my sight or about my little one getting hurt in the parking lot. I hope this comes in handy to new moms and dads. -- Marlene, Omaha, Neb.

Send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Tex. 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE or e-mail it to Heloise@Heloise.com. Please include your city and state.

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