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    Category: Bad Behavior

    Shatter-Resistant, Not Idiot-Resistant

    | ME, USA | Bad Behavior, Wild & Unruly

    Customer #1: “Hey, these bowls say shatter-resistant… that means that don’t break, right?”

    Me: “Well, it doesn’t mean they don’t break. ‘Shatter-resistant’ just means they’re much harder to break.”

    Customer #1: “Huh… that’s really neat.”

    (Customer #1 and #2 seem fascinated by shatter-resistant bowls, and thus begin to experiment. They begin to tap the bowls, nicking the bowls with their finger. One even starts to lightly bang it on the shelf. Then Customer #1 nods to Customer #2, and then SUMO SLAMS the bowl at full force into the ground, shattering the bowl to pieces.)

    Customer #1: “Wha… why did the bowl break?”

    Me: “As I said, the bowls were shatter-resistant not shatter-proof.”

    Customer #2: “But they broke!” *to Customer #1* “That’s false advertisement.”

    Customer #1: “Yeah! That’s false advertisement! I want my money back.”

    Me: “Um, you didn’t buy anything, though.”

    Customer #1: “So! That’s false advertisement! I demand my money back or to talk to your manager.”

    (I decide at this point that I doubt these customers will even listen to me, so I call down my manager.)

    Manager: “Hello there. How may I help you today?”

    Customer #1: “These bowls say they are shatter-resistant, but they still broke when I dropped it on the ground! That means it’s false advertisement.”

    Manager: “I’m sorry, but shatter resistant means it’s harder to break. It does not mean it’s shatter proof.”

    Customer #1: “Well, I want my money back for this worthless product.”

    Manager: “Well, we can do that if you have your receipt.”

    Customer #1: “Oh, I didn’t buy any of them yet.”

    Customer #2: “But it’s false advertisement. She deserves her money back.”

    Manager: “Ma’am, I cannot refund you your money if you didn’t buy anything.”

    Customer #1: “But it’s false advertisement! I want my money back.”

    Manager: “Again, I can’t refund you your money if you didn’t buy anything…”

    (These two customers went back and forth with my manager for at least a half hour. My manager had security escort them out because they began to break more bowls to prove their point!)

    David Vs. On-The-Warpath

    | Canada | Bad Behavior, Top

    (I’m helping a very nice woman with her cellphone. Suddenly, a man built like a bodybuilder comes rushing into the store, his arms full of documents.)

    Me: *to the man* “I’ll be with you in just a few minutes.”

    (Instead of waiting, the man pushes the woman out of the way to get to me.)

    Customer: “Hey, I need to use one of your computers. Can you log me in?” *gestures towards a setup of demo laptops*

    Me: “Uh, for what, exactly?”

    Customer: “I need to do some online banking quickly. Just f***ing unlock one of those computers already.”

    Me: “Look, I can’t let you do that. Those machines get sold, and if somebody gets your bank info off of a machine I sell them, I’m liable. More so, your attitude isn’t very respectful, sir.”

    Customer: “I don’t f***ing care if people steal my bank info! I just need to get this s*** done. Now, let me on!”

    Me: “No. There’s a public library open further down the street, but I refuse to allow you onto our machines, not just for liability reasons, but for how you’re treating me.”

    Customer: “Well, f*** you then!”

    Me: “You can leave my store, or I can call the police on you. Your choice.”

    (The man walks out of the store raging, and the woman I am helping before just looks at me shocked.)

    Woman: “I am amazed you talked to him like that. He looked like he could have snapped you in half!”

    Me: “At some point, you just get tired of some people. Let’s finish you up here.”

    (Later that week, I got a commendation from Head Office, star service award. I was nominated by the woman I served that night.)

    Parents Need Guidance

    | Maple Grove, MN, USA | Bad Behavior, Family & Kids

    (A customer comes in with a couple kids, talking on her cell phone.)

    Customer: *to me* “Two.” *continues talking on phone*

    Me: “For the indoor playground today?”

    (The customer nods and holds out $20. I make sure to make eye contact with them, since she’s still talking on her phone)

    Me: “Okay, that will be $8.”

    (I take the $20 and hand her the change, and since she is clearly distracted, I also make sure to get her a receipt before I put the wristbands on the kids.)

    Customer: *to her phone* “She didn’t even tell me how much it was! She just took my money!”

    She Crossed The Line

    | New England, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Bad Behavior, Top

    (I am a customer at my regular hardware supply store, which most local contractors have accounts at. I’m standing in a large queue at the cash register with a few items for a job I’m working on. The customer in front of me seems annoyed and is asking many questions about a special light bulb for her house.)

    Cashier: “I’m sorry, from what you’ve told me, I don’t think that particular bulb will work with your fixture. However, the row of bulbs above where you got it will work!”

    Customer #1: *more annoyed* “So, I have to pick out another one? Can you at least show me?”

    Cashier: “I’m sorry, I can’t leave the register right now. But [employee's name] can help you.”

    (She points to her coworker twenty feet away in the lighting section. The customer begins heading there, but first asks…)

    Customer #1: “Will I have to stand in line again?”

    (The cashier and I look at each other and shrug, so we both wait out of courtesy. However, the customer is gone for quite awhile although the aisle she went to is very close, so the cashier decides to help me first. However, halfway through my transaction, Customer #1 comes back and goes straight to the front of the line.)

    Customer #1: “Excuse me! I believe I was first!”

    Cashier: “Oh! ma’am. I’m sorry. You were gone for a while, and he only had a few items and I thought-”

    Customer #1: “Whatever! Just ring me up!”

    (The cashier nervously looks at me and I nod that it’s okay for her to go first. By now, there are at least six people standing in the queue behind me. The cashier begins to ring her up.)

    Customer #1: “You know, that was really rude! You should all be more helpful here!”

    Me: “Ma’am, she was only doing her job. This is a small business and they are very courteous and helpful here.”

    Customer #1: *turns around to me* “I don’t care! They need to be more efficient and shouldn’t be so rude. I’m on my break. I don’t have time for this!”

    Me: “Ma’am, I’m a contractor, I lose money for every minute I am away from the worksite. Your time is no more valuable than anyone else, and [cashier's name] works very hard and is very good at her job.”

    Customer #1: “Wuh-well… I was only saying that so they know that they are wasting a customer’s time!”

    (A customer behind me interrupts her.)

    Customer #2: “Hey, lady! We’re all contractors. You are wasting our time and money!”

    (Everyone else in line verbally and visibly motions in agreement. The first customer finishes her transaction and quickly leaves, embarrassed. The cashier was so thankful she went and told the store manager who gave everyone in the queue a keychain flashlight for free. I love that store! Remember to support your local businesses!)

    Related:
    They Crossed A Line

    Guaranteed To Shut Anyone Up

    | San Antonio, TX, USA | Bad Behavior, Language & Words, Top

    (I am an EFL teacher and self-published writer. I am an English major and in several classes focusing on the history and structure of the English language. I am paying my way by working at a call center. I get a caller who sounds reasonably educated.)

    Caller: “I want you to tell me if there is a guarantee on this product.”

    Me: “I know, sir, but to cont—”

    Caller: “Tell me about the guarantee before we get anywhere else.”

    Me: “I’ve given you the information on my sidebar, sir. To get further details I need to advance the screen so can you just give me your name—”

    Caller: “Just tell me about the guarantee! Guarantee: Latin for get your money back!”

    Me: “Latinate.”

    Caller: “Pardon me?”

    Me: “It’s Latinate, not Latin. We acquired it from the French. Probably Parisian French but I’m not sure in that. Warranty actually comes from the same word, but Norman French has the W sound and other types of French don’t usually. Probably because the Normans were a bunch of Norse Viking types the French gave some land to in order not to be pillaged. The Normans invaded and conquered England and tried to obliterate the English language but only managed to get a bunch of words added. When the English invaded and conquered France a couple of hundred years later, they got the Parisian version of the word with the GU sound. This is why warranty has a more official and stronger meaning than guarantee.”

    Caller: “Uh…”

    Me: “Now, I have a specific script the client requires us to read about the guarantee. It is important that I read precisely the words they chose without interpretation. To get to that script, I need to process the first screen as if I am taking an order. I am not allowed to read from memory. If you choose not to order, then I just cancel it out and there is no order placed. Can I get your information now, sir?”

    Caller: *much calmer* “All right…”

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