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    Category: At The Checkout

    The customer has seemed normal and maybe even intelligent throughout the shopping purchase. But then they get to the checkout and as soon as human interaction is required it all falls apart. The checkout operators really are our first line of defense against the stupid customer!

    Not Chickening Out Of Saying The Right Thing

    | NJ, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Food & Drink, Health & Body, Liars & Scammers

    (I am waiting in line at a local place that’s known mostly for its hot dogs and unbelievably spicy buffalo wings. All of a sudden a customer comes storming into the place, literally shoves several people aside from the line and slams a take-out container on the counter.)

    Customer: “I DEMAND TO TALK TO THE OWNER RIGHT NOW!”

    (The man behind the counter working the fryers and grills turn around.)

    Owner: “Yes, ma’am, how can I help you?”

    Customer: “I didn’t say some stupid fry cook. I said the owner of this place, the woman!”

    Owner: *points up to the wall of pictures she’s standing next to* “That would be me in every one of those ceremonies and events up there. This place is called [Restaurant] because I named it after my daughter. Now, how can I help you?”

    Customer: “You tried to POISON ME! I ordered the veggie bites and the fried cauliflower, and there was CHICKEN IN THERE!”

    Owner: “Oh! I’m terribly sorry ma’am. There must have been some kind of accident. I would be happy to replace—”

    Customer: “OHHHH, no. I’m not letting you off that easily. I could have DIED! I want some kind of compensation!”

    (After witnessing this overreaction from the customer, I have had enough:)

    Me: “All right, I’m sick of this. You storm in, shove three people out of the way including an older woman half your size, you insult the owner of the place to his face, he STILL offers to replace your food, and then you demand he give you more money back!?”

    Customer: “I COULD HAVE DIED!”

    Me: “Not unless you’re the first reported case of CHICKEN ALLERGIES, or you just swallow everything whole and can crush broccoli on the way down but not a chicken nugget! Let it go, python-lady!”

    (At this point the rest of the people there burst out laughing, including most of the staff. The customer storms out.)

    Owner: “THANK YOU! I don’t like being rude to customers no matter what, but she was totally out of line! What were you getting? It’s on the house.”

    Me: “Ah, don’t worry about it. I just better not find any fried cauliflower in my chicken nuggets!”

    An Order Of Ice And Fire

    , | Hattiesburg, MS, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Food & Drink

    (I am ordering food through the drive-thru:)

    Carhop: “Here’s your hot fudge sundae. Sorry, it’s a bit melted.”

    Me: “That’s fine.”

    Carhop: “And here’s your molten cake sundae. Sorry, it’s a bit melted as well.”

    Me: “Well, it’s got hot fudge.”

    Carhop: “Yeah, but people complain a lot that the ice cream doesn’t look a certain way.”

    Me: *sarcastically* “How dare you mix hot and cold because I ordered it!”

    This Dress Is Making You Bluer By The Minute

    | Finland | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Money

    (I work in a clothing store and am well in on my last hour of a nine-hour shift. I cannot wait to go home, but at the last minute an elderly woman walks in and starts strolling around the store.)

    Me: *trying not to let my tiredness show* “Hello! How may I help you?”

    Customer: “WHAT?! SPEAK UP LOUDER, YOUNG LADY!”

    Me: *rather loud* “Hello, ma’am! How may I help you?”

    (The customer leans in towards my face . Not only is she almost yelling every word, she also has the most terrible breath I’ve ever encountered, but as a service-minded person I try not to let my reaction to the smell show on my face.)

    Customer: “I’m looking for a specific dress. It’s blue.”

    Me: “We have many blue dresses in our collection, ma’am. Could you be more specific?”

    Customer: “MY GOD! DON’T YOU KNOW ANYTHING? I DON’T WORK HERE!”

    (This continues for a while. I keep looking around the store while politely trying to find out more details about the dress she is looking for. It is now a quarter past closing time. Finally, we find it.)

    Customer: “Now, this is really expensive. €19.95 for a single dress? What if I don’t like it?”

    Me: “Ma’am, we have an open return policy; if you find that you’re unhappy with the purchase, we will gladly exchange it for you or give you your money back. Just bring it back with the receipt.”

    Customer: “It’s a bit long. I don’t like dresses that are long. I might have to dust up my old sewing machine and make a few changes.”

    Me: “That is an option, ma’am, but I should warn you, if you were to make alterations to the dress, we can’t take it back. If you want to return it, it has to be in its original state.”

    Customer: “You WHAT? That’s insanely rude! Of course I should be able to make a few alterations and still get my money back! I would only improve it! It’s not really worth the price. I would be helping you.”

    Me: “I’m very sorry, but that is our policy.”

    (At last, now almost thirty minutes after closing time, she decides to buy the dress, so we walk together back to the till.)

    Me: “That’ll be €19.95, ma’am.”

    Customer: “That’s all right. I have a coupon so I get it for free.”

    Me: “Hmm. Let me see the coupon. We usually do not have any coupons that entitles a free piece of clothing, only discounts.”

    (The customer then hands me a lunch coupon for a nearby restaurant.)

    Me: “I’m sorry, but I cannot accept this. This is not a coupon for our store, it’s a—”

    Customer: *interrupting* “WHAT? You rude little thing! I’ve paid with this at other places without problem!”

    Me: “Did you pay with these at [Restaurant nearby], by any chance?”

    Customer: “EXACTLY! So stop being an idiot and give me my free dress!”

    Me: “Again, I’m sorry, ma’am. I cannot accept this as a valid payment. I will be needing cash, or a credit card. I assure you, if you are not happy with the purchase, you will receive a full refund if you bring the dress back to us in its original state and with the receipt.”

    Customer: “Fine!” *she throws her credit card directly at me*

    Me: “Here, you put your card in this slot here, and press your pin-code to confirm the purchase.”

    Customer: “WHAT? I don’t know my pin-code! Everyone else knows it! Why are you being stupid? Does everyone who works here lack brain cells?”

    Me: “I do beg pardon, but there’s no need to insult me. That’s just the easier way for us to confirm payments. I’ll swipe the card for you, like this. Just sign here.”

    (She just stood and looked at me for a while, fuming with her bad breath, until she finally signed her receipt and stormed off, a full 55 minutes after closing time.)

    Alarmingly Bad At Listening

    | FL, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid

    (I am ringing up a customer. The transaction goes smoothly until he is about to walk away with his purchases in his cart.)

    Me: “Oh, sir, you can’t take the cart out the doors. Our alarm will go off.”

    (The customer ignores me and keeps walking. Thankfully he turns around because his wife wanted to purchase another pair of shoes. Once that is done, I try again. Once again, he ignores me.)

    Me: “Sir, you can’t take the cart.”

    (The customer and his wife ignore me and continue to leave, until the security alarm goes off.)

    Customer: *pokes head back through the door* “Am I good?”

    Me: “No, you can’t take the cart.”

    Customer: *smiles and nods* “Okay.” *leaves with the cart*

    Me: “Well… okay, then.”

    Change Can’t Make You Change

    | ME, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre

    (I’m a 22-year-old queer female. While I don’t exactly go around singing my orientation from rooftops, I do have two queer pride pins on my work uniform and I always wear a rainbow bracelet, so it’s pretty hard to miss. A  man who’s about 60 years old comes through my line.)

    Customer: “I have a bad back. Can you lift that out for me?”

    (He points to a 15-pack of beer. I lift it out, scan it, and put it back in his cart.)

    Customer: “Wow, look at you. You’re pretty strong. Your boyfriend must be happy with you.”

    Me: “I don’t have a boyfriend.”

    Customer: “Well, why not?”

    Me: *deadpan* “I have no idea.”

    Customer: “Well, we can’t have that. How about I take you out to dinner tonight?”

    (I take a moment to very pointedly look at my two pins and then hold my arm up in plain sight and stare at my bracelet.)

    Me: “I already have supper plans.”

    Customer: “Come on, it’s just one night.”

    Me: *as I hand him his change* “I already have supper plans.”

    Customer: “That’s a shame. I would have let you keep the change if you’d said yes.”

    (After he leaves, my manager, who’s known me since high school, approaches.)

    Manager: *laughs* “Yeah, because eight bucks is gonna turn you straight and take away your standards.”


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