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  • Bigotry Comes In All Shapes And Sizes
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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!

    They Changed Each Other

    | Mississauga, ON, Canada | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Money, Top

    (I work part-time at a store that sells pools, hot tubs, and other leisure items.)

    Me: “Will that be everything today?”

    Customer: “Yes, miss. What’s the damage?”

    Me: “That’ll be $50.05, sir.”

    (The customer opens his wallet and hands me a $50 bill.)

    Customer: “I’m sorry, but I only have the $50. I left my coin-purse at home today. Is that okay?”

    Me: “Not a problem, sir. I’m sure I’ve got a nickel in my purse, somewhere.”

    (I get a coworker to watch my till while I grab my purse from the staff room and try to find a nickel. I grab one, put it in the drawer, and cash the customer out; he thanks me and leaves the store, but a few hours later, my boss pages me to call his office immediately.)

    Me: “You rang, sir?”

    Boss: “Yes. Can you come to the front of the store, please? There’s someone who wants to speak with you.”

    (When I reach the storefront, the same customer is standing at the counter. He’s holding a beautiful, red rose, which he gives to me—along with a nickel!)

    Me: “T…thank you, sir. You know, you didn’t have to do this!”

    Customer: “Yes, miss. I did. You went above and beyond your job-description to help someone in need, and that’s customer service!”

    Me: *trying not to cry by this point* “Thank you so much, sir! Have a nice day!”

    Customer: “And you as well, young lady!”

    (After he left the store, my boss sent him a $50 gift-card, for ‘treating our staff like human beings’. It’s been 10 years since then, but I’ll never forget that customer for as long as I live. To this day, his kindness reminds me that there is still good in this world!)

    Belly Rubbed And Snubbed

    | MI, USA | At The Checkout, Wild & Unruly

    (I work at a department store as a cashier. I also have a medical condition where I must take a heavy amount of steroids, and a side effect of this is that I’m a bit chunky. I’m ringing up a customer.)

    Me: “Hi, did you find everything okay?”

    Customer: “Oh, my dear, how can they force a woman in your condition to stand at a cash register all day? Your ankles must be so swollen! When are you due?”

    (Suddenly, she reaches across the counter and rubs my belly, totally invading my personal space.)

    Me: “In about five years, after I finish college, get married, and get a job that pays above minimum wage. I’m fat, not pregnant, lady. And I do not remember giving you permission to put your hands on my body.”

    (The customer turns beet red, mumbles something, and abruptly leaves all her merchandise on the counter. I get a round of applause from the rest of the customers in line.)

    Next Customer in line: “I would have hit her if I were you.”

    They Got Owned

    | Greenwich, CT, USA | At The Checkout, Liars & Scammers, Top

    (I work in a very affluent part of town at a very well-known clothing store. The owners are known around town and come into the store very often. We get a lot of wealthy and prominent customers who are used to getting what they want, no matter what. Because of this, we try do everything we can to satisfy them the best we can.)

    Me: “Hello there, can I help you with anything today?”

    Customer: “Yes, I am looking for [item], and I need it in this size.”

    Me: “Okay! Let me go check for you. I’ll be back in a moment.”

    (Meanwhile, one of the owners walks in and starts talking to my manager.)

    Me: “I’m sorry ma’am, we don’t happen to have that item in stock. I can check another store for you if you like, and we can ship it to you free of charge.”

    Customer: *screaming* “THAT IS UNACCEPTABLE! I WANT THIS ITEM NOW! I KNOW YOU HAVE IT SOMEWHERE!”

    Me: “I am very sorry, ma’am, but we do not have that item. We don’t have it in any sizes. We unfortunately sold out. But I can call a few of our other stores and get it shipped to you.”

    Customer: “NOT ACCEPTABLE! I WANT THIS NOW!”

    (She sees another customer who is wearing what she wants. This ‘customer’ just happens to be the owner.)

    Customer: “This is the item I want. GIVE IT TO ME!”

    Other Customer/Owner: *winks at me*

    Me: “Ma’am, I’m sorry, but you cannot ask this customer to give you his shorts. I can check another store for you though.”

    Customer: “No! I want his shorts!” *turns to the owner* “Give me your shorts! I know the owner personally. He says I can do whatever I want!”

    Other Customer/Owner: “Oh, I had know idea that you knew the owner. What’s his name?”

    Customer: “Um, his name is Paul! Now give me the shorts!”

    (Meanwhile, a few other customers and the manager walk over to see the fuss.)

    Other Customer/Owner: “Huh, that’s weird. My name isn’t Paul. Welcome to my store. Now, get out before I press charges.”

    Customer: *freezes and runs out of the store*

    (I unfortunately didn’t get a raise. I’m only a seasonal employee, but I did end up being able to get a huge discount on clothes for the rest of my life and I even got to pick out a few outfits free of charge!)

    Getting Owned By The Owner

    | USA | At The Checkout, Bigotry

    (I work in a privately owned bookshop, and the shop owner/manager has very little patience for rude customers. He’s generally not unkind about it unless you upset other customers, though. He actually owns the property where the shop is located, and rents neighboring spaces to other businesses.)

    Customer #1: *to another customer* “You have a very nice a**!” *tries to grab her*

    Customer #2: *alarmed and backing away* “Don’t touch me!”

    Customer #1: “God, you feminist c***s need to learn to take a d*** complement! Besides you can’t f***ing tell me what to do, I’ll touch you if I godd*** want!” *tries to touch her again*

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

    Customer #1: “What’re you going to do about it? You’re only a woman, you have no right to tell me what to do. I have more rights than you! I’m better than you!” *tries to hand me a slip of paper* “Get me that book, slave!”

    Me: *refusing to take it* “You need to leave, sir.”

    Customer #1: “Get me your manager, stupid w****!”

    Manager: *approaching from behind, and speaking firmly to Customer #1* “Get out.” *to Customer #2* “I’m so sorry. Please let me know if there’s anything I can help you with.”

    (Customer #2 starts to tell him what she’s looking for, handing him a reading list, but Customer #1 isn’t done yet.)

    Customer #1: “Hey, who do you think you are, buddy? Do you even know which book this is?” *waving the paper at him*

    Manager: “I’m fairly certain everyone over the age of 12 knows what book that is.” *frowning* “I thought I told you to get out.”

    Customer #1: “Only the property owner can tell me to leave!”

    Manager: “Well even if that were true, I do own this property. So, you have two options. You can say good bye and leave, or you can just leave, which I would prefer.”

    (Customer #1 leaves, embarrassed. However, he remains in the parking lot, so afterwards my boss walks Customer #2 to her car. I ended up having to call the police to get rid of Customer #1.)

    Conan The Contrarian

    | Huntsville, AL, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Geeks Rule

    Customer: “Today is my anniversary! Love is the best thing in life.”

    Me: “Actually…” *in Conan voice* “To crush your enemies, to see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women…” *back in regular voice* “…is the best thing in life.”

    Customer: “Ha! You made my day!”

    (She paid for a $6 meal with a $20 bill and told me to keep the change!)


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