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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.

    UK is OK

    | Alabama, USA | Awesome Customers, Bigotry, Language & Words, Theme Of The Month, Top

    (I’m British, white-skinned, blue/green-eyed, red-haired, Celtic. I’m studying in the U.S. and work at a restaurant part-time. It’s a small-ish town and most people there seem to be quite sweet and any comments on my accent have always been ones of surprise or complimentary.)

    Me: “Good afternoon, sir and madam, are you ready to order?”

    Customer #1: *confused* “I’m sorry, what?”

    Me: “Are you ready to order?”

    Customer #1: *looks at her husband, confused* “What did she say?”

    Customer #2: “Must be a foreigner not bothering to learn English.” *slowly and loudly* “I CAN’T UNDERSTAND YOU. DO YOU SPEAK ENGLISH?”

    Me: *slowly and loudly* “YES, I DO, SIR. I ASKED IF YOU WERE READY TO ORDER.”

    Customer #2: “Oh, this is ridiculous! She doesn’t speak a word of English! Tell you what, all these foreigners are coming into America, taking American jobs from real Americans!”

    Customer #1: “Let’s find one who can understand us!”

    Me: “I can find someone else to take your order from you, if you’d prefer.”

    Customer #2: “Oh, she does speak English now!”

    Customer #1: “She was screwing with us the whole time! This is unacceptable! We don’t come here to be made fools of!”

    Customer #2: “Stupid foreigners coming in stealing our jobs and screwing up the American way of life!”

    Me: “If you’re worried about foreigners coming to America and stealing your livelihood and culture, you can take your complaints down to the nearest Native American reserve, where they will be more than happy to sympathise.”

    Customer #2: “How dare you?! You think you can come over here and disrespect the American people like that!”

    Customer #1: “We want the manager here now! I’ll have you fired and deported back to your own dirty country!”

    Me: “I’ll fetch him now for you.”

    Manager: “What seems to be the problem?”

    (Customer #1 & #2 rant excessively at him for employing foreigners who don’t speak English and disrespect Americans.)

    Manager: “Well, sorry to burst your bubble there, guys.” *gestures to me* “[My name] here is from the United Kingdom and arguably speaks better English than all of us. And she’s a valued employee so if it comes down to a choice between your custom and her working here, I’m a have to choose her over you two. Now get out of here!”

    (At this point, Customer #3, an old man with a thick southern accent, beckons me over.)

    Customer #3: “Hey, you, girlie.”

    Me: “Can I help you, sir?”

    Customer #3: “On behalf of the United States Of America, I just wanna apologise for the way those two morons just treated you. I been a citizen here for 78 years, an’ I ain’t never let nobody tell me howta treat people. I served alongside a British guy in a the last war and I never had a problem wi’ him. Far from it.”

    Me: “That’s so nice! Thank you!”

    Customer #3: “Woulda married him too if people like that wouldn’t make such a fuss about it.”

    Taiwannical Behavior

    | Taiwan | Awesome Customers, Bigotry, Language & Words

    (I’m browsing in a bookstore in Taiwan, when I notice two Caucasian customers looking in the Young Teenage Girls section and laughing.)

    Customer: *to his friend, in English* “Watch this.”

    (He grabs a random book and hands it to an employee.)

    Employee: *in somewhat broken English* “Can… I… help you?”

    Customer: “Yes. I should like that you would exemplify the thesis behind the philosophies illustrated in this literature.”

    (I’m looking at them now, rolling my eyes, but the pair are having a good time of it and don’t notice me. The employee is very confused and mutters in English as best he can.)

    Employee: “Eh… uhh… sorry?”

    Man: *gesturing as he speaks* “You. Need to. Exemplify. The. Theories. Of the. Thesis. As manifest. In this literature.”

    (It’s obvious the customer has no idea what he himself is saying, and is just having a laugh at the employee’s expense. The other guy with him has a wide grin on his face like he’s thoroughly enjoying the exchange. I’ve had enough, so I go to the employee, take the book out of his hands, turn to the synopsis given on the back cover and turn to the two guys.)

    Me: *in perfect English* “A girl’s parents have just divorced and the father moves her to a new school. She’s having difficulty adjusting to a new environment and life as a young woman and the changes to her body as he matures. Because she’s new, she’s having a difficult time telling anyone about it and doesn’t know how to tell her father about the various changes she is experiencing with her body. She falls for a popular boy, but she’s new and awkward and nobody likes her. Eventually, she contemplates suicide.”

    (The two customers are staring at me like I’ve got ten heads. I decide to rub it in a little further.)

    Me: “What the h*** is this? You managed to find the girliest book in here!”

    Customer: *opens his mouth, as if to say something*

    Me: “Where’re you from?”

    Man: “Uh, uh, uh, uh… CANADA!”

    (Embarrassed, he and his friend dash out of the store.)

    Me: *to the employee in Mandarin* “They were just screwing with you. There’s only one thing you need to know in English if something like that ever happens again: you tell them:” *in English* “F*** off!”

    When Tank Top Complaints Tank

    | MA, USA | Bigotry, Health & Body, Religion, Rude & Risque

    (I’m working third shift at a hotel and it’s my job to get most of the cleaning done. It gets rather hot so I often take off my thick work shirt and clean in just a tank top. Unbeknownst to me, our hotel is filled with a very conservative religious group of people. Two boys come to the desk while I’m wiping some things down. I’m very chesty and the tank top is slightly low cut showing off some cleavage.)

    Boy: “Hello?”

    Me: “Hey there. What can I do for you?”

    (As I turn around, I notice two boys staring at me wide eyed and slack-jawed. They are probably no older than 13 and are dressed in very traditional garb. I quickly realize my faux pas and toss on my jacket. I get everything set and they go on their way. About half an hour later, I’m back in my tank top cleaning when an irate woman storms down and starts yelling.)

    Woman: “Listen here, you little hussy! My boys are pure and sinless unlike you, you heathenish w****! How dare you dress like that and expose yourself to my boys like that! Have you no decency! Who let you out of the house like that?! I bet your husband doesn’t even know where you are! Did he let you get this job or did you sneak behind his back like the harlot you are?!”

    Me: “Actually, ma’am, I’m a lesbian and don’t ever intend to let anyone tell me how to dress or what I can and can’t do. You have no right to be here yelling at me. You came to this society; I didn’t go to yours. Therefore, you can’t expect me to bend my way of living just because you are around. I realized I was over exposed and put on a jacket but it is hot in here and I’ve got a lot of work to do and would sweat to death if I kept it on. Now, if you would please be as so kind as to let me finish working.”

    Woman: “You’re the devil’s spawn!” *storms away*

    (In the morning, a man creeps up to the desk looking rather embarrassed. I put on my jacket again, fully expecting him to lay into me as well.)

    Man: “I want to apologize for my wife last night. We understand that you aren’t a member of our religion and that you don’t have to conform to our rules. Thank you for covering up after realizing we are modest people. I am truly sorry for the way she spoke to you, and although it doesn’t excuse her insolence, I hope this helps.”

    (He hands me a fifty dollar bill, and begins to walk away.)

    Me: “Sir, you really don’t have to give me this. She was just trying to protect her children and although it was a personal attack, she was just doing what she felt necessary.”

    (He waved a hand dismissing me, and left. When they checked out, he gave me nothing but good reviews and left me another fifty to make up for his wife’s behavior. The boys left me thank you cards that I got my next shift, and a few weeks later I got a letter from the wife apologizing for the way she acted and what she said to me!)

    Shogun The Way To Go Home, Part 2

    | Tokyo, Japan | Awesome Customers, Bigotry, Language & Words, Top, Tourists/Travel

    (I grew up in Japan and am bilingual, even though I am Australian by birth. I am showing some Australian friends around Tokyo.)

    American customer: *to the station attendant, in English* “Hey, I need to get to Akihabara station. How do I do that?”

    Station attendant: *in Japanese* “Sorry, I do not speak English. Could you point it out?”

    (As the station attendant speaks, he has a big map of the subway system and his gestures make it VERY obvious what he wants the customer to do.)

    American customer: *in English* “Are you deaf?! I need to get to Akihabara station!”

    Station attendant: *in Japanese, while gesturing at the map emphatically* “I don’t know English, sorry. Please point where you are going.”

    American customer: *in English* “Stupid Asians. Just tell me how to get there!”

    (I intervene at this point, as I feel sorry for the poor station worker.)

    Me: *in Japanese* “He wants to get to Akihabara station. I know the way; I’ll explain it to him.”

    (I explain, in English, how to get to the station, and tell him the station attendant was trying but he doesn’t speak English.)

    American customer: *to me, in English* “These stupid Japs should learn English. Why couldn’t he tell me that?”

    Me: “When Asians visit your country, you expect them to speak English, right? So it’s only fair when you come here you try to use their language. Plus, he was trying to help you if you had just pointed it out on the map.”

    American customer: “Everyone should know English!”

    (He storms off without apologizing, or thanking me or the station worker.)

    Station attendant: *to me, in Japanese* “Thank you so much for helping. I didn’t know what to do.”

    Me: “Don’t worry about it. He was just being rude. I feel like I should be apologizing for his behaviour on behalf of all foreigners.”

    Station attendant: “Oh, don’t worry, we get much worse. Then there are people like you who help convince me you’re not all bad. Thanks again!”

    Related:
    Shogun The Way To Go Home

    Acting Like Wario

    | New York, NY, USA | Bad Behavior, Bigotry, Theme Of The Month

    Customer: “Hi do you guys have any Mario games?”

    Me: “Yes of course, what system would that be for?”

    Customer: “…What?”

    Me: “What game system would you like that Mario game for, sir? We have them for the Wii, DS, and 3DS at the moment. We also might have a few used Gamecube ones.”

    Customer: “Look, my son just wants a d*** Mario game. Can’t you just give me one?”

    Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but I can’t. There are literally dozens of different Mario titles for a bunch of different systems.”

    (The customer looks up at the consoles behind me.)

    Customer: “I think he has that… uh… Playstation there.”

    Me: “Well, in that case, I can’t sell you any Mario game because they don’t ma—”

    Customer: “God d*** it! I just want to buy my son a f***ing Mario game! Why is that so d*** hard?!”

    Me: “They don’t make them for Playstation.”

    Customer: “Don’t you know that the customer is always right you little s***?! I drive all this way to buy my son a Mario game, and you don’t even know what you’re talking about!”

    Me: “Unless we know what system he has, I can’t help you sir. It could be for the Wii, DS, 3DS, or the Gamecube.”

    Customer: “Oh, so now you’re refusing me service?! I’d like to speak to your supervisor you little punk!”

    (My manager has had enough at this point.)

    Manager: “Sir, I’m going to have to ask you to leave.”

    Customer: “I’m not going anywhere! I know my rights!”

    Manager: “Okay then, I’m going to call security. I recommend you leave before they arrive.”

    Customer: “I thought nerds were supposed to be smart!” *leaves*

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