"Thanks, but no thanks"

September 1999
By another Equinox walk out

After having just come back from my "Initial and last" corporate interview with Equinox International (which was laughable), and reviewing the net and especially your site, I thank God I didn't fall for their scam.

I had sent in so many emailed resumes to companies in the local paper that when someone called me regarding a "Management Trainee" position I had applied for, I didn't think anything of it. They had indicated they were from a company called Southwest Marketing. They asked if I could come in later that day for an interview.

I was looking for work and jumped at the opportunity to meet later that afternoon. I went into the office in appropriate business attire with my resume in hand and was surprised to see so many fellow 20-somethings also arriving at the same time I was. I figured that it was a new company and that they had several positions, which they were interviewing for. "No problem", I thought to myself. I signed in at the front desk and asked the woman there if this was going to be one of those companies, which requires payment for training. She said that she was surprised to hear that there were actually "...companies like that...", but that, "...rest assured...", this was not the case.

Turns out this was basically going to be a seminar. I met the gentleman who had initially called me and while he was standing next to HIS manager, we proceeded to do some small talk about the sports for about 10 minutes. All the while, his boss only opened her mouth to introduce herself to me and smile. It was as if HE was auditioning his value to the company by keeping me in the room.

I was led into a small conference room filled with about 50 people, which I estimate contained about 25-30 people such as myself who were called in for their respective "interview". On display were rows of healthy-environmentally friendly; breath sprays, vitamins, air cleaners, water purifiers and the like.

We were all asked to sit, and it seems as though that the Equinox "employees" were scattered throughout the audience. The reason I say this is because I recognized who these people were and whenever prompted, they would be the only ones to react (laughter, responses, etc.) to the speakers' monologue. It would give the casual observer the notion that everyone in the group agreed with what he was saying. And these people literally BOOMED their responses.

The first speaker showed how flammable the "...leading breath spray..." was and he even stated that he wasn't going to mention it by name (although he clearly showed us the words "BINACA" on the product label). He flicked on a lighter and sprayed the product and sure enough, the Binaca emitted a 3 foot long stream of flame. Then he showed how "friendly" Equinox's alternative was, and the spray merely extinguished the lighter. He also told us about how chlorine is terrible to put in our bathwater and asked "...why would we even think about letting our loved ones bathe in that?".

The very same speaker then did something, which I thought was totally shameless. He stated that he didn't become environmentally aware of what common household products and water was doing to our health until he came to Equinox. He stated (while displaying the latest shower filter by Equinox for sale), that when his girlfriend was diagnosed with the ravaging disease Lupus, and how she reacted by gaining weight due to all the steroids being given to her to control the disease's effect on the skin(?), he made sure he and his girlfriend used as many natural products as possible (which so happen to be conveniently provided by Equinox). As if we didn't know that Lupus is a disease which is inherited and not caused by outside factors such as chlorine in our bath water?

Of course the video with Gouldd was displayed, overtly displaying his yacht, plane, new Cars, etc. At one point, Gouldd was actually speaking to the camera through the windshield of his new Ferrari Testarossa while driving down a country road. At that point, I couldn't get out of there fast enough. I said, "Thanks, but no thanks", and left.

Now I read all this info on the Internet concerning lawsuits and "cult-like" grips on members, and thank God I didn't go through with this.

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