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!

That’s How You Wish The Cookie Crumbled

| Acton, MA, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers

(I am on checkout.)

Customer: *notices the shopping carts full of items other customers didn’t want* “What are all those?”

Me: “These are things other people decided they didn’t want.”

Customer: *looks confused* “That’s strange.”

Me: “Well, it’s better that they bring them up here for us to put away then leave them on a random place on the shelf.”

Customer: *looks confused and surprised* “Why would people do that? Why not just put it back where they found it.”

Me: “They’re lazy? Or they can’t find where it goes.”

Customer: *quietly looks confused*

Me: “Have you ever worked retail?”

Customer: “No, never.”

Me: “…Huh. Normally it’s only people who’ve worked retail that do that, because they know what it’s like.” *I finish bagging their stuff and give them their receipt* “Here you go. Have a good holiday.”

Customer: “Thank you. You, too.”

Me: *to myself* “We need something like cookies we can give out to good customers.”

God Loves Little Boys Who Stand Up For Others

| Bath, England, UK | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Family & Kids, Top

(I and my seven-year-old son are shopping for a birthday present for a girl in his class. She’s asked for dressing up clothes or accessories so we get a wand, tiara, and jewellery. I also have our regular shopping in the trolley. We get to the tills and there’s at least a three person queue at each till. We join a queue and have waited a couple of minutes when my son puts the tiara on and waves the wand.)

Son: *in a “posh” voice* “I’m the Queen and I say this line should move faster!”

(I and a few others smile at his playfulness when a man in line at the next till yells at me.)

Man: “You can’t let your son do that. If he turns into a f****t it’ll be your fault.”

(Everyone stops and stares at him in horror whilst the cashiers call for a manager.)

Son: “What’s a f****t?”

Me: “It’s a nasty word that only nasty people use so you mustn’t say it.”

Man: “It means gay, kid.”

Son: “What’s gay?”

Man: “It means you’re bad and going to Hell for being evil.”

Me: “It’s when a man loves a man and a lady loves a lady.”

Son: “Oh, like Uncle James and Uncle Ian?”

Me: “Yep, just like Uncle James and Uncle Ian. They’re not bad, are they?”

(My brother is a paediatric oncologist and his partner is a paediatric nurse. We’ve tried to explain what cancer is and how my brother and his partner make children feel better when they’re poorly.)

Son: “My uncles make children better when they have poorly blood and poorly bones. If you make them go to Hell that means you want the children to be poorly.”

(The manager and a security guard turn up but my son looks this man in the eye and holds his stare.)

Son: “Do you want the children to be poorly? Do you want them to be sick and have to go to Heaven?”

(Everyone is now staring at my son. The man has gone red and is looking around.)

Manager: “Sir, I believe you’ve just been outwitted by a child. You should leave now and keep your disgusting views to yourself and out of my shop.”

(The manager offered to pay for our shopping but I declined. He did, however, offer my son a toy. He chose a dress for his friend’s present.)

Related:
God Loves Little Girls Who Stand Up For Others

If You Put Your Mind To It

| Switzerland | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Money

(I work part time in a store that sells sweets and little toys. A man in his mid-twenties walks in.)

Customer: “I’d like to buy this. How much would that be?” *points at an item*

Me: “That would be [Price].”

Customer: “So. I’m thinking about [Price] right now. I take it out of my mental savings account and mentally transfer it to you. How about that?”

Me: *puzzled* “Uhm…”

Customer: “Did you get it?”

Me: “Uhm… No, I didn’t get it. I work with real money here.”

Customer: “But I want to buy it with my mental money! Can’t I buy it like this? I’m imagining it really, really hard right now! I WANT THIS!”

Me: “I’m sorry; I can’t help you with that.”

Customer: “Well, at least I tried.”

Needs To Learn About Togetherness

| WI, USA | At The Checkout, Underaged

(Two customers come up to my register together with a bottle of brandy; both look young so I move to card them both.)

Me: “Can I see your IDs, please?”

Customer #1: “Oh, she’s not buying anything.”

Me: “It doesn’t matter. If you’re together, I need to see both of your IDs before I can sell this brandy to you.”

Customer #1: “We’re not together.”

Me: “Then how do you know she isn’t buying anything?”

Customer #1: “Well, she’s not holding anything, so I just assumed… We’re not together!”

Customer #2: “I’m just his ride!”

Me: “I’m sorry, that doesn’t matter. I cannot sell to you since you are together.”

(At this point they exchange a look that makes it very clear that they’re trying to pull one on me and that Customer #2 is, in fact, underage.)

Customer #1: “But we’re not together!”

Me: “She just said she’s the one who drove you here.”

Customer #1: “This is complete garbage! I have never heard of this stupid f***ing rule! No one’s ever done this to me before. We’re not even together!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir. It’s state law that I can only sell if I have IDs from everyone in the group.”

Customer #1: “But we’re not together!”

Has No License To Be Right

| FL, USA | At The Checkout, Underaged

(I work at a local grocery and pharmacy store in my neighborhood in the customer service department. I deal with checks, returns, and things of that nature. A lady walks up to me looking to cash a check.)

Me: “So, you’d like to cash a check for $76? May I see your ID, please?”

Customer: “Absolutely! Here you go.” *I inspect the ID, which expired over seven years ago*

Me: “Miss, I can’t take this ID. It expired on [this date] in ’07. As such, that makes it invalid.”

Customer: “Are you kidding me? This is ridiculous! I cash checks at your sister store down the road all the time with this ID!”

Me: *trying to be as nice as possible* “Well, I can tell you they shouldn’t be doing that either. It’s illegal for me to cash this check with an invalid license. Do you have a valid ID?”

Customer: *searching through her wallet for a newer, legal license* “Here. You need to learn to respect your elders and let the customer be right.”

(I’m 20 and while that is true, I’m not going to break any laws.)

Me: “And while we’re at it, may I ask why you carry around that expired license?”

Customer: “Well, in case I lose my new one, of course!”

(She takes her money and storms out. I turn to a coworker who watched the whole thing.)

Me: “I hope she doesn’t get pulled over and present that. She wouldn’t have a good excuse.”

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