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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!

    Acting Like A Dog

    | NC, USA | At The Checkout, Health & Body, Pets & Animals, Rude & Risque

    Customer: “You’re a very pretty girl. How old are you?”

    (I get flustered and blush as I finish the paperwork for his dog’s stay.)

    Me: “Uh, thank you, sir. I just, uh, I just turned 21.”

    Customer: “You’re still a little girl! I’ll be 40 this month. You know what that means: prostate exams. Do you know anything about prostate exams?”

    (I am hurriedly finishing the paperwork.)

    Me: “Your total is $235. Thank you for choosing our kennel. I hope Bruiser enjoyed his stay! He’s a sweetie; we would welcome him back anytime.”

    Customer: “You didn’t answer my question. Do you know anything about prostate exams?”

    (He winks at me.)

    Me: “No, sir. I do not. How would you like to pay?”

    (He leans over the counter.)

    Customer: “A pretty little redhead like you? I’m sure you know a lot about a lot of things.”

    Me: “I see you’ve previously used Visa. Would you like for us to charge the same card?”

    Customer: “I’d like for you to answer my question, honey.”

    (A coworker has overheard our interaction came to the front. He is approximately 6’3″ and solid muscle. His hair is also a brighter shade of red than mine.)

    Coworker: “I heard somebody up here likes redheads.”

    Customer: “I was talking to—”

    Coworker: “I know who you were talking to, and if you do not stop talking to her, the only thing that will be up your a** is my foot. Now how would you like to pay, sir?”

    (The customer promptly pays. The kennel owner received complaints about both my coworker and I, but she had also had incredibly creepy interactions with this client. She informed him that his business was no longer welcome.)

    Planning To Walk A Mile In Another Man’s Shoes

    | FL, USA | At The Checkout, Criminal/Illegal, Liars & Scammers, Theme Of The Month

    (I’m a cashier at a sports store. A customer comes up with just a few items, one being a small shoebox. I open the box and there are two dirty old kid’s shoes inside.)

    Customer: “Oh, my son has them on; he’s somewhere else in the store.”

    Me: “I just need to see the shoes before I ring them up, and make sure they are right.”

    Customer: “Oh, uh…”

    (He calls his son—who is standing ducked behind the candy aisle—over.)

    Customer: “Here!”

    (He cheerfully points at his son.)

    Me: “I have to see them up-close.”

    (He picks his son up and holds his feet out.)

    Customer: “See?”

    Me: “Can I get one of those?”

    Customer: “Sure?”

    (He’s not smiling as much now, and pops one of the shoes off.I check the shoe. It’s the same brand, same size, but different style number.)

    Me: “Oh, you’ve got the wrong shoe. Are these the ones you want? I can call for the right box.”

    (He puts on a big show of arm movements and smacking his forehead.)

    Customer: “Aww buddy! We got the wrong shoes! We got the wrong shoes, buddy. We’ll be right back.”

    (He takes back the box. I wait for a while, holding his other items. I call the shoe department to tell them about the man, and find out the box was for a much cheaper pair of kid’s shoes. I let my manager know, and she heads off after him. When the man returns, I am alone.)

    Customer: “Here we go!”

    (I check the box: same brand and style number. I nod, smile, and ring them up. My manager walks up, not smiling at all, and holds out another box.)

    Manager: “You wanted this too, right?”

    (He looks rather wide-eyed and quiet. He suddenly smiles and takes the box, nodding.)

    Customer: “Yeah, right! I lost this, thank you! I was going to ask for it. Haha.”

    (I ring up the box and the man leaves with his son. My manager says she followed my tip and found him putting on some adult shoes himself, determined to get a free pair. She just brought up the box for the shoes he was going to steal.)

    Common Sense Has Checked Out

    | MI, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Money

    (I finish a customer’s order, and they ask for a pen so they can write a check.)

    Me: “Oh, sure. But you don’t need to fill it out.”

    Customer: “Okay.”

    (The customer continues to write the check.)

    Me: “You can just fill out the information you need, but you don’t need to fill out the check. You can leave it blank if you’d like to.”

    Customer: “What’s the date today?”

    Me: “It’s the 30th, but you don’t need to write it down, unless you need to.”

    (The customer completely fills out the check. I run the check, and when the transaction’s complete, I give the customer her receipt and check back.)

    Me: “There you are. Have a great night!”

    Customer: *looking at the check in her hand* “Oh, you didn’t need this?”

    Me: “Nope, it’s run electronically.”

    Customer: “Why didn’t you say anything!?”

    Some Customers Are A Blessing

    | AB, Canada | At The Checkout, Religion

    (I am a cashier, helping a customer. She sneezes.)

    Me: “Bless you!”

    Customer: “Are you a priest?”

    Me: “I’m sorry?”

    Customer: “Are you a priest?”

    Me: “Um… no. I am a cashier at the moment.”

    Customer: “Well, then you have no right to bless me!”

    Me: “Okay… my apologies?”

    Small Minded People

    | Scotland, UK | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Family & Kids

    (I am a dwarf, and need a stool to be seen clearly. From the till, I can pass as an average-height person. A customer and her small child approach.)

    Customer: “Do you have any woollen gloves?”

    Me: “Sure, we keep more stuff in the back. I’ll go and check for you.”

    (I step down from my stool, and come out from behind the counter. The customer is surprised, and takes a step back, taking her child’s hand. Despite being hurt by her reaction, I make myself smile. I head to the back room, where I can hear her son.)

    Child: “What was that, mum?”

    Customer: “Shush! Don’t stare. He’s just a midget; he won’t hurt you. He didn’t eat his greens, that’s all.”

    (I come back through with a box of gloves.)

    Me: “Sorry, I couldn’t help overhearing. Midget isn’t the most ‘PC’ term to use. Personally, I prefer dwarf; it’s different for everyone. Midget is definitely offensive for most though.”

    (The customer looks at me wide-eyed, saying nothing. I gesture to the box for her to look through.)

    Me: “You’ll probably find something in there. We have quite a lot of—”

    Customer: “Is it okay if you go back behind the counter? You know, for my son?”

    (Quite speechless, I go back behind the counter, and on to the stool. My manager decides to intervene.)

    Manager: “Is there a problem here? Do you think [my name] here is going to taint your kid’s innocence or something?”

    Customer: “I just don’t want him scaring my son. Is that too much to ask?”

    Manager: “Well, I’m not going to have you insult my staff. Either treat him like a human being, or leave this shop.”

    Customer: “Well, I don’t know why you hired someone like him to work on the till!”

    Manager: “Okay, that’s it. Get out.”

    (The customer and her child leave.)

    Me: “Thank you!”

    Manager: “Shush, just stay there. I’m going to the bakery to get you an apple turnover. You deserve something after dealing with her!”


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