Ex-Genius Recounts Retail War Stories

April 9, 2012

Thanks to an e-book written by a former Apple store Lead Genius, we now officially know that attractive girls receive lots of attention at the Genius Bar. Okay, it’s not the most breathtaking information ever revealed about Apple’s retail stores. But as one of several anecdotes in Bartending: Memoirs of an Apple Genius by Stephen Hackett, it does paint a fuller portrait of what it’s like to staff the Genius Bar and cope with customer troubles and tirades. Available as a rather short 52-page download for the iPad, Hackett explains more about the psychology of Apple customers than of the company’s secrets, as it turns out. He recalls visitors who would bring in seven year-old portables needing repair (sorry, no parts), desktops with roaches inside (hey!), and fried hard drives that left owners without their irreplaceable family photos (eventually recovered). In one anecdote, Hackett claims that in a fit of pique, he once took a crowbar to an iPhone that wouldn’t stop buzzing. He left Apple in 2008 after two years and took a job as an IT support specialist for a Memphis (Tenn.) non-profit. He’s been writing for various Web sites, and recently rebranded his own site as 512pixels.net to document technology, journalism and design. As for the old days, Hackett was sentimental in an earlier interview. “Getting to surprise and delight customers never got old.” Nice. Purchase his book for $4.99, in both ePub and Kindle formats, and consider a subscription to his Web site to help keep an ex-Genius afloat.

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