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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!

    Been Awake For A Maternity

    | Bergen, Norway | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Health & Body, Love/Romance, Top

    (A scruffy looking customer comes into the store. He is wearing his pajamas, bright colored running shoes, and a scarf. He looks like he has not slept for weeks. He walks around the store for five minutes before coming to the line at the register. It is just after midnight.)

    Me: “Good evening, sir.”

    Scruffy Customer: *mumbles*

    (He has three items: anchovies, asparagus in a jar, and bacon-flavored chips.)

    Me: “Will with that be all, sir? Do you want a bag for your items?”

    Scruffy Customer: “No and yes, thank you.”

    (He reaches for his pocket and takes out his car keys, ruffles around other pockets to look for his wallet, and finds nothing. Something breaks inside of him. He puts a hand to cover his eyes and is starting to turn away from me.)

    Scruffy Customer: “I am sorry; she is going to kill me.”

    (He starts to walk out. Another customer in line speaks up.)

    Customer: “When is she due?”

    Scruffy Customer: “What?”

    Customer: “When is she due?”

    Scruffy Customer: “In three weeks or so. How did you know?”

    Customer: “Buying strange things in the middle of the night wearing pajamas. That is kind of a recipe for a guy who has a pregnant girl at home.”

    Scruffy Customer: “Yeah, I guess so.”

    (The scruffy customer starts to walk out again.)

    Customer: “Hey, go get your stuff on the counter. I will pay for you.” *to me* “How much is it?”

    Me: “Uhh… 76 kroner with my staff discount.”

    Customer: “Wow, anchovies, asparagus and bacon flavored chips. She has got it bad!”

    Scruffy Customer: “If it’s smelly, spicy or has a strange texture, she has to have it. I think she has tried everything in those categories. Except for shark meat, I think.”

    (The scruffy customer smiles, and the other customers at the register give out a laugh. He thanks the customer for paying, and tries to get his information to pay him back. The other customers there start to talk to him, give him advice and try to lift his spirits. He now has a four-month-old daughter, and does not look scruffy anymore!)

    Honesty Is A Gift

    | WI, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Family & Kids

    (I work at a small museum that has a proportionally small gift shop. A girl who looks to be about seven years old walks up to the checkout.)

    Me: “Hello, how may I help you today?”

    (The only thing she’s holding is a silly little fortune teller fish made of thin plastic that costs 50 cents. It should also be noted that she looks terrified yet determined.)

    Customer: “Hey, um, I actually wasn’t planning on buying anything, but I was looking at this fish thing and messing with it and then it ripped. And I don’t have any money with me. So… um…”

    Me: “Oh, that’s so sweet of you! I know plenty of people who would have just stuck that in their pockets and walked right out. You know what, I’ll take care of that for you, and I’ll even give you a free gift card for being so honest!”

    (The poor kid is so relieved it makes me laugh.)

    Customer: “Oh, thanks, ma’am! I was so scared!”

    Me: “No problem! It’s honest people like you that are going to go far in life! Have a good day, honey!”

    (Totally made my day!)

    Do As You’re Told Or You’re On Your Bike

    | USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Theme Of The Month

    (A group of young kids comes into the store. One of them is running around, asking questions without paying attention to the answers, being messy, and generally being annoying. Also, the store is going to be shut down in a few weeks, which has understandably left all of us on edge.)

    Polite Kid: “I’d like this one, please.”

    Me: “Sure! That’ll be—”

    Rude Kid: “My friend wants this one!” *shoves another game and gift card into my face*

    Me: “Did you want to do this in the same transaction as this friend, or a different one?”

    Rude Kid: “Different one!”

    Me: “Then you’re going to have to wait.”

    Rude Kid: *turns to friend* “Oh, hear that? You gotta wait.”

    (I finish the transactions, and watch the kids mess around in the store.)

    Rude Kid: “Yeah, so, we’ll have to come back tomorrow. I’ll be loaded up again by then; I’m getting $20!”

    (The group starts to leave. Another customer comes in and approaches me.)

    Customer: “Hey, I wanted to let you know those bikes are blocking the door.”

    (I nod to the customer and turn to the kids who are heading for the door.)

    Me: “Hey, just so you know; next time you can’t leave your bikes there.”

    Rude Kid: “Not like it matters, since you’ll be shut down soon anyway.”

    Me: “Next time, we won’t sell you anything if you leave those bikes there. Use the bike rack, or don’t come in again.”

    (The rude kid finally shuts up and leaves quickly.)

    A Price Shake-Down

    , | Anchorage, AK, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Food & Drink, Money, Theme Of The Month, Top

    (I’m working the counter, and I see a six-year-old boy walk in with his mother. The mother sits in the back while the boy goes to the counter to make his order.)

    Me: “Hi, sweetie! What can I get you today?”

    Boy: “Can I please have a small orange-creme shake?”

    Me: “Of course. Anything else?”

    Boy: “No.”

    Me: “Alright, that’ll be one-ninety.”

    (The boy’s face crumples, and he backs away from the counter, walks in a circle, then looks back at me.)

    Boy: “What?”

    Me: “One-ninety?”

    (The boy begins crying, and rushes back to his mother.)

    Boy: “Mommy! I need $200 for my shake, and we don’t have that kinda money!”

    Mother: “What?”

    Me: “Wait, wait, no, sweetheart! I mean it’s one dollar and ninety cents!”

    Boy: “Oh, okay.”

    (After that, he pays for his shake and acts like absolutely nothing has happened.)

    Little Pony, Big Problem

    | USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Movies & TV, Theme Of The Month

    (I always try to make conversation with the customers, especially the kids. I notice that the young daughter of the family I’m ringing up is wearing a shirt bearing a picture of Fluttershy, one of the ponies from the new ‘My Little Pony’ cartoon.)

    Me: “I like your shirt, sweetheart! That’s Fluttershy, huh? Fluttershy’s my favorite pony!”

    (The little girl glares at me.)

    Me: “Is something wrong?”

    Girl: *crying* “You can’t have Fluttershy for your favorite, because Fluttershy is my favoritest pony ever, in the whole wide world! I like her way more than you could ever ever ever, and she’s my pony pal, not yours! I love Fluttershy, so you CAN’T!”

    Me: “Oh… uhm, can I say Pinkie Pie is my favorite then?”

    Girl: *sniffling, wiping her eyes* “Yeah. You can have Pinkie Pie.”

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