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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!

    Pay Attention

    | AZ, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Health & Body

    (One of our registers has been closed all day, with plenty of signs to say so. A customer runs up to me with a heavy accent.)

    Customer: “Pay! I need to pay!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but this register is currently closed. The nearest open registers are—”

    Customer: *holds out a sweater to me* “Pay?”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but this register is closed. The nearest open register is just down that way.”

    Customer: “No, no, I need to PAY!”

    Me: “Ma’am, this register is closed. Closed.” *I speak slowly* “I cannot work the register for you. They are locked. Only a manager can—”

    (The customer starts writhing around in a strange manner, with her sweater held over her stomach and her legs bowed together.)

    Customer: “Oh, I need to pay! So bad!”

    (One of my coworkers has a brainwave and comes up to the customer.)

    Coworker: “Excuse me, do you need a restroom? A bathroom?”

    Customer: *looks at my coworker cheerfully* “I can pay?”

    Coworker: “You need to… pee? A bathroom?”

    Customer: “Pay!”

    (The customer begins energetically following my coworker.)

    Coworker: “The bathrooms are just down this way; if you follow this aisle, turn left up here and—”

    Customer: “No! I need to PAY!”

    (The customer runs off, completely ignoring my coworker’s directions. We still aren’t entirely sure what she was asking for!)

    Service With A Smile

    , | Peoria, AZ, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Food & Drink

    (I am working the drive thru and I’m in a good mood.)

    Me: “Thank you, ma’am. Your total comes to $3.47 and a smile!”

    (I smile at her.)

    Customer: “Excuse me? How rude! How dare you?”

    Me: “Sorry?”

    Customer: “I don’t want to smile, and you can’t make me. Just give me my d*** food.”

    (The customer leaves.)

    Manager: “What was her problem?”

    Me: “I ‘charged’ her a smile.”

    Manager: “I hate drive thru.”

    Weighted Opinions

    | Vancouver, BC, Canada | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Technology

    (I am an early 20s, able-bodied male, with a fair bit of muscle, and I also happen to be the only employee in the store who fits such a description.)

    Me: “Hi, how are you today?”

    Customer: “Good, thank you. Can I get a 55-inch [brand] TV, please?”

    Me: “Why, certainly.”

    (I make a phone call to the back stockroom to request the customer’s TV. While I am processing the sale, the person bringing the rather large & heavy item is one of my young female coworkers.)

    Coworker: “Here’s your TV, ma’am! If you’re done shopping today, I will be glad to take this to your car!”

    Customer: *to me* “Shame on you, young man. Shame on you!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but I don’t quite follow.”

    Customer: “How dare you make such a fragile young girl bring out something so big! She could’ve seriously injured herself! You should be ashamed!”

    Me: “Believe me, ma’am: I would prefer to have done this job myself, but I have no control over my position. They put me on cash because I happened to be a little better at it, and my coworker here does this all the time.”

    Customer: “This is not right! This is not right at all! A tall, bulky man like you should do the heavy lifting! Not this poor skin and bones over here!”

    Coworker: “Ma’am, I’m seriously okay with this. When women fought for equal rights long ago, they knew that this was going to happen. And I’m glad it did.”

    Customer: “But girls sh—”

    Coworker: “Girl power! That’s what it is!”

    Customer: “Alright fine, just load the d*** TV into the truck already.”

    (My coworker helps the customer with her TV. A few weeks later, the same customer is at my till once again, this time, to buy a couch.)

    Customer: “Alright, I know that a couple of weeks ago, that nice, young girl proved more than capable of doing this. But I still feel really bad for her, so can you get somebody else to help me?”

    Me: “Not a problem, ma’am, she isn’t even in today.”

    (This time, I call my manager to bring out the couch.)

    Manager: “Okay, ma’am, where are you parked?”

    (The customer takes a good look at my manager. Although my manager is a man, he very much looks like he is approaching his 70s.)

    Customer: “This whole store is backwards!” *stomps out*

    Manager: “What the h*** was her problem?”

    Me: “Equal opportunity employment, apparently.”

    On A Roll About The Roll

    | USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Money

    (My boyfriend and I are at our regular grocery store. We always get in this particular cashier’s line when she’s working because we connect on a “we both work with customers daily and it’s awful” level. The customer ahead of us is giving her a hard time.)

    Customer: “This should only be $1.50!”

    Cashier: “It’s ringing up as $2.00. You may have picked up the wrong item.”

    Customer: “No! This is on special! It said it was on sale.”

    Cashier: “Hold on please; I’ll check with the bakery.”

    (The customer pouts as the cashier calls on the phone nearby. We only hear her half of the conversation. She gives an item number and describes the item.)

    Cashier: “There is a special on this item, but not in this packaging. This has six rolls in it; the one on sale has four. It’s not even a big difference; you’re paying 50 cents more for two more rolls.”

    Customer: “That’s not right!”

    Cashier: “I just called the bakery. I just checked. You can put this back and get the one on sale or you can get this one.”

    Customer: “Okay. Okay, just this, okay, fine, fine, fine.”

    (The cashier finishes with the customer. The customer walks away.)

    My Boyfriend: *grins* “Just another day, huh?”

    Cashier: “Seriously. 50 cents for two more rolls. Oh, hey look. She’s going over to customer service.”

    (We all look over as she brings up her receipt and more or less yells at the representative. She points over to our cashier and we watch the representative get on a phone.)

    Cashier: “Great, looks like she’ll be getting that discount. The manager always caves in to these people.”

    (My boyfriend and I simultaneously groan.)

    Me: “We know how that is.”

    Cashier: “I have to stop myself from yelling at these people. I tell myself, I love my job! I really do. I really… really do. Really.”

    It’s Cent-less To Argue

    | Allentown, PA, USA | At The Checkout, Math & Science, Money

    (I am a cashier at the front end of a grocery store. A customer hands me four $1 bills.)

    Customer: “$3.50 in quarters please!”

    Me: “Excuse me, sir?”

    Customer: “You heard me; I’d like $3.50 in quarters.”

    Me: “Wouldn’t you just like the $4 in quarters?”

    Customer: “No? If I wanted that, then I would have asked for $4 in quarters.”

    Me: “Then how would you like the remaining $0.50?”

    Customer: “What remaining $0.50? Look, I don’t know what is so hard about this.”

    (I just gave the customer his $4 worth of quarters, and he walked away.)

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