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    Arabian Plights

    | Sydney, NSW, Australia | Bad Behavior, Bigotry, Top

    (I have a rather unusual name that leads people into thinking I’m from overseas. Not helping matters is that I have a slight accent because my mother is from New Zealand.)

    Me: “Hi, how are you today?”

    Customer: “Fine, thanks.”

    (She looks at me and reads my name tag.)

    Customer: *slowly, while giving me the thumbs up* “I am very good, a-okay.”

    Me: *confused* “Well, okay then.”

    Customer: “Where are you from?”

    Me: “I live in [nearby neighbourhood].”

    Customer: “Where. Were. You. Born?”

    Me: “I was born in Australia, ma’am. I’ve lived here my whole life.”

    Customer: “Don’t lie to me! That is not an Australian name; that’s a foreigner name!”

    Me: “It is a bit unusual, isn’t it? My parents found it in a baby book. Customers have told me it means ‘brunette’ in Arabic.”

    Customer: “Ah hah! That’s where you’re from. That’s why you have that ridiculous voice! First you blow up our soldiers, and now you’re working in our stores!”

    (She suddenly snatches a bag of biscuits from the counter and throws it at me. I’m too surprised to do anything, but thankfully my manager sees the whole thing and comes over.)

    Manager: *to me* “Go take a nice, long break, and let me finish up here.”

    Customer: “Yeah, get lost girlie! This nice Australian man is going to help me.”

    Manager: *smiles* “Ma’am, I was born in Iran and immigrated to Australia when I was three.”

    (The customer proceeds to scream in anger and throws something at my manager. She was thrown out of the store!)