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    Category: Bigotry

    This category is dedicated to the bottom rung of humanity at its worst — racists, homophobes, and other bigots — and, occasionally, employees at their finest.

    No ID, No Idea, Part 11

    | Australia | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Geography, Money, Theme Of The Month

    (An American customer approaches, and tries to pay with a card that isn’t his. It has a typically female name on it, and the signatures don’t match.)

    Me: “I’m very sorry, but I don’t think this is your card. I can’t put through the sale.”

    Customer: “It’s my girlfriend’s. She said I could use it.”

    Me: “That might be so, but it’s illegal for me to finish the sale; I am sorry. Is your girlfriend in the store? She can come and sign for it.”

    (I suggest this cheerfully, so that he knows I’m definitely not accusing him of having a stolen card. However, the customer instantly snaps and begins yelling.)

    Customer: “YOU F****** AUSTRALIANS! I COME HERE FOR A HOLIDAY, AND YOU’RE ALL A BUNCH OF RACIST PRICKS! IF I WAS AUSTRALIAN, YOU’D F****** PROCESS IT! THIS S*** DOESN’T HAPPEN IN AMERICA! F*** YOU!”

    (My manager, who happens to be nearby, decides to intervene.)

    Manager: “Sir, that’s simply not true. It’s legislation to protect people from having their card stolen. We’re protecting your girlfriend’s money.”

    Customer: “WHAT A LOAD OF S***. WELCOME TO F****** AUSTRALIA, HEY? F*** ALL OF YOU! F*** YOUR F****** COUNTRY! F****** AUSSIE RACIST C****!”

    (He storms out of the store, leaving everyone speechless.)

    Manager: “I wonder what he’ll do when he realises he left the card behind.”

    Related:
    No ID, No Idea, Part 10
    No ID, No Idea, Part 9

    Teeny Tiny Meets Teenage Whiney

    | USA | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Love/Romance, Rude & Risque, Top

    (There is a young couple in my check-out line, followed by a handful of teenagers. The man is quite a bit taller than the woman, and he’s fairly muscular and intimidating. She’s very small, and unassuming. The teenagers are making a number of snide, extremely explicit comments to her.)

    Teen #1: “D***, baby! You ought to learn how to service more than one man! A pretty little thing like you needs to be trained!”

    (The other two teens high-five each other and laugh.)

    Teen #2: “Yeah, man! With a fine b**** like you, a real man could find some use for that mouth!”

    (She grabs her companion’s arm, and mutters something quiet to him. She then smiles at me as it’s their turn. They put their things on the counter.)

    Me: “Hi there. Did you find everything you needed today?”

    Teen #3: “Hey! B****! Don’t ignore us! Men are talking; you gotta learn some respect!”

    (She smiles at me, but looks slightly annoyed.)

    Woman: “Won’t you excuse me?”

    (She turns around.)

    Man: “Oh, boy.”

    Woman: “If you EVER speak to me like that again, you never WILL become the men you’re arrogant enough to think you’ve already become. If you want to be treated like adults, and respected like adults, you act like adults and show other people respect. I feel sorry for your poor mothers. You are pathetic excuses for human beings. Go bother somebody else; come back when you’re ready to behave yourselves!”

    (The man starts talking to me.)

    Man: “The funny thing is, people think that because I’m physically bigger than she is, they should be afraid of me. Then they see her mad. She’s tiny, but she’s the scary one.”

    Addressed The Race Issue

    | Edmonton, AB, Canada | Bigotry, Technology, Theme Of The Month, Top

    (I work at a technical service call centre. A call is taken by an African-Canadian tech.)

    Tech: “Thank you for calling [name of company]. My name is [name]. How can I help you?”

    Caller: “Oh, thank God they gave me somebody white! The last time I called they expected me to talk to some stupid n*****.”

    (The tech is perfectly calm.)

    Tech: “Sorry about that, sir. How can I help you?”

    (The call proceeds as normal. The tech troubleshoots with the caller, and decides new software is needed. He offers to ship the software.)

    Tech: “Just to make sure, can I reconfirm your address?”

    Caller: “Oh, sure. It’s [full street address].”

    Tech: “Thank you. Oh, and before you go, you ought to know that I’m the biggest, blackest mother-f***** you’ll ever meet in your life, and I know where you live. Good day.”

    A Wee Bit Foreign

    | Brisbane, QLD, Australia | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Theme Of The Month, Top

    (I am Scottish. After serving a Vietnamese family, another customer approaches and leans over the counter to whisper.)

    Customer: “It’s like trying to play a game of ‘Spot the Australian’ in here at the moment. There are so many foreigners around; know what I mean?”

    (Not missing a beat, I lean back over towards the customer and speak in my strongest Scottish accent.)

    Me: “Oh, I know ma’am! The bloody foreigners are everywhere! Jeez, sometimes you can never tell when you’re going to bump into one, hey?”

    Customer: “Oh… oh my… I am so sorry, I didn’t mean…”

    (The customer is very quiet for the remainder of the transaction, before apologising once more and leaving the store in a hurry.)

    Coworker: “You’re a very bad man sometimes dude. I love it.”

    Gender Unawareness Issues

    | RI, USA | Bigotry, Theme Of The Month

    (I’m attempting to pull a heavy hand cart that happens to have a broken wheel. I also have a very rude impatient customer behind me.)

    Customer: “Oh, come on! Is that as fast as you can pull that thing?”

    (I pay little attention to the customer, and I continue to struggle with the truck.)

    Customer: “When did this place start hiring wimpy, weak-a** boys to do this sort of work!?”

    (I continue to ignore the customer as I turn into the aisle I’m assigned to work in. As my luck should have it, the customer is also headed there.)

    Customer: “Figures, it’s a long-haired pretty-boy. Go work at a clothing store you f**! You obviously can’t handle this job.”

    (I turn to face the woman, who almost immediately goes pale at my appearance.)

    Me: “Ma’am, I apologize for moving so slow, but this cart has a broken wheel. I was going about as fast as I could. And as you can see from my name tag, I am not a ‘long-haired pretty-boy’; I’m a young woman.”

    Customer: “Young women shouldn’t work here either!”

    (She hurries off, without getting what she needs from my aisle. That was the first time in six and a half years that a woman told me I shouldn’t be doing my job.)


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