This is not about some super-secret invisible avenger who comes to the aid of the distressed. It’s about people who you don’t see. People standing right in front of you that are easy to ignore.
It doesn’t just happen to homeless or street people either. It happens to a lot of people including older people.
People with over the top personalities are always noticed. They make a commotion and people cater to them (or avoid them). Beautiful people are noticed. You notice people your own age (although sometimes it’s in a “do I look that old?” way).
You hear about it more these days. Invisible. Unseen. It’s in skin commercials. People look past you. They don’t see you. Your presence doesn’t register.
I never experienced it until the past few years. Most of the time I don’t care (don’t stare, you look way older than me!) but I do care when I’m a customer.
Recently I walked into a store. I was greeted then left alone. The next person coming in was greeted along with a “how can I help you?” The new customer was a young 30-something. Obviously she looked like a more promising buyer than I did.
Truth be told, she was a looker. She looked and tried things on. In comparison I was looking for something specific.
I’m not shy. I approached the counter and asked for help. I was given nominal help. They didn’t have the color I wanted. There was no offer to order and ship the desired color to me (frequently done at this store). It was a “this is what we have” kind of help and no more. (Reminded me of the “no, I can’t go out on a date with you because I have to wash my hair!)
I wasn’t one of them. I was an outsider intruding. Although I had one of their products on, I wasn’t wearing a fitted yoga outfit. My top didn’t have all the trendy cutouts. Way too old. Definitely not one of them.
Back home, I got a request from the store for a review. Yep, I let them have it. You can’t tell if a person is a “buying customer” by age or dress. Just because your grandmother wouldn’t buy something doesn’t mean I won’t. (I’m way cooler than your grandmother!)
You lost a sale. You can’t afford to lose a sale with purchases going on-line. This has happened at this store before. I wouldn’t go there except I like their products. I’d order on-line all the time except their sizing isn’t consistent. It’s time to move on.
That’s a retail situation but it happens in restaurants too. It happens more places but I never looked for it. Maybe I wasn’t seeing either. Now I’m watching for it.