Brainerd dentist, Dr. Jerry Swanson, thought he was attending “just another dental meeting” as he headed south to St. Paul for the annual Star of the North dental meeting.
“I’ve been going there for years and never experienced anything like this. Sure, there have always been those aggressive scrap metal refiners and mildly hostile practice brokers. But I’ve never experienced anything like this before,” Swanson said.
Dr. Swanson took a course in team communications on Friday morning and then headed to the exhibit floor to look for some new spoon excavators. That’s when things turned dark.
“I was looking for the Hu Friedy booth when all of the sudden someone selling endo files jumped in front of me. Before I knew it, I was stuck between someone selling scented hand towel heaters and someone who wanted me to buy some very expensive scrubs. They were both big and kind of scary. The woman selling scrubs wasn’t going to take ‘no’ for an answer. I don’t even wear scrubs!”
Recent declines in attendance at dental meetings have meant bleak sales for dental reps across the spectrum.
“The desperation is palpable,” said an unnamed dental implant rep. “I look across the aisle at the dude selling those goofy massage chairs and I think, ‘it’s him or me, man. It’s him or me.’”
Dr. Swanson was found by his dental assistant cowering under a display of autoclaves. “He wouldn’t come out,” she said. “I was glad to have taken that communications course. I was able to coax him out, but we never did get any spoon excavators.”