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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!

    Very Shy To TMI

    | USA | At The Checkout, Rude & Risque

    (I am a cripplingly shy teenage girl, in line at a dollar store. The elderly customer behind me has noticed my shirt, which says ‘Top Ten Reasons I Procrastinate:’, and is otherwise blank.)

    Customer: “Hey, I like your shirt! You know, I wanted to procrastinate, but I kept putting it off.”

    Me: *laughs nervously*

    (The man starts putting his items on the conveyor belt.)

    Customer: “We’re gonna have fuuuuun tonight.”

    (I glance back and notice that he’s buying 10 bottles of baby oil, and nothing else. I turn bright red and turn away.)

    Customer: *laughing* “Aw, I think I scared her.”

    (An elderly woman has just come up behind the elderly customer.)

    Woman: “What’s that?”

    (The customer explains what’s just happened to the woman—his wife.))

    Woman: “Oh! Haha!” *she walks up to me* “You see, things tend to dry out when you get older!”

    Common Sense Playing Truant

    | OH, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, School, Top

    (I am a junior in college. I’m working retail over Christmas break. It’s early afternoon on a weekday.)

    Customer: *huffs up to me* “They really shouldn’t let you work at this hour. Getting an education is more important than some low-rent job.”

    Me: “Ma’am, I don’t mean to be rude, but what are you talking about?”

    Customer: “You’re, what, 15 years old? They shouldn’t let kids your age work at all, but especially not during the school day.”

    Me: “Oh, sorry for the confusion, ma’am. I’m actually 21, and a junior at [university about 300 miles away]. We have a very long holiday break, so I’ve been off classes for a few weeks now.”

    Customer: “That’s not possible. I need to speak with your manager.”

    Me: “Ma’am, I know I look somewhat young, but I really don’t think it’s necessary to speak to my manager. I’m really, truly a college student on winter break.”

    Customer: “I’ll find your manager myself!”

    (The customer storms off. A few minutes later, I hear my manager over my headset.)

    Manager: “[My name], any chance you have your student ID on you?”

    Me: “I think so… want me to bring it up front if I have it?”

    Manager: “If you could.”

    (I go get my student ID, and bring it to the front of the store.)

    Me: *to customer* “Here’s my student ID, ma’am.”

    Customer: “You must be one of those high school students who takes college classes, too. It’s not possible for you to as old as you say you are. This store should be fined for letting you work during the school day.”

    Me: “Ma’am, my university is hundreds of miles away. You think I commute several hours back and forth every day to take advanced classes?”

    (My manager tells me to go back to work, and I see the customer huff out of the store a few minutes later. A few more minutes pass.)

    Customer: “There she is, officer; arrest her for truancy.”

    Me: “Oh. My. God. You got mall security over this?”

    Mall Security: “If you let me see your driver’s license, I’ll kick her out of the mall for the day, and ban her from your store.”

    Me: “Fair enough…”

    (She was not invited back to our store.)

    Trouble Brewing, Part 5

    | Champaign, IL, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Criminal/Illegal, Food & Drink

    (I am working the Friday night shift at a gas station located on the campus of a big university. The city’s liquor law prohibits the sale of alcohol after midnight. I’m working by myself at 3 am, when a customer with a look of urgency and intoxication comes barging right in.)

    Customer: “Dude, I have a huge party at my apartment and we just ran out of beer! I need like six cases!”

    Me: “Sorry, buddy, but we stop selling alcohol at midnight.”

    Customer: “I’m desperate! There are like 100 people at my place, and a ton of hot b*****! If I don’t get more beer soon, they’ll leave! I’ll give you a $20 tip if you sell me some.”

    Me: “Sorry, even if I were to try to sell you some, I couldn’t since our registers also block all sales of alcohol after midnight.”

    Customer: “How about if I just walk out with two cases, and ‘accidentally’ drop $40 on the ground on my way out?”

    Me: “That would be stealing, and I’m not okay with that.”

    Customer: “Okay, what if I stuck my hand in my pocket, and pretended to have a gun…”

    (The customer proceeds to stick hand in his jacket pocket and make it look like he’s holding me at gunpoint.)

    Customer: “…and ‘robbed’ you for some cases of beer. Then you would chase me out, and while chasing me outside, I would ‘accidentally’ drop $40?”

    Me: “I couldn’t let you do that either. First of all, I would be required to immediately call the police and file a police report for a robbery. The police would then get your face from the store cameras, easily track you down since you live close by, and put you in jail. Is this party worth going to jail over?”

    Customer: “I’m sorry for bothering you dude. I really don’t have a gun. I just wanted to get some beer for this party really bad, and didn’t want to come back empty handed. Please don’t call the cops!”

    Me: “I’ll forget this even happened if you leave immediately.”

    Customer: “See ya!”

    Me: “Bye!”

    Related:
    Trouble Brewing, Part 4
    Trouble Brewing, Part 3
    Trouble Brewing, Part 2

    His Psychotic Two Cents

    | MI, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Money

    (Two customers—who seems to be friends—are checking out a few small items. Customer #1 has already paid and is waiting while Customer #2 pays.)

    Cashier: “That’ll be $11.97.”

    Customer #1: “Ooh, you get pennies!”

    Customer #2: “Oh, I love pennies!” *suddenly very serious and angry* “Unless they’re Canadian! God help him if he gives me Canadian!”

    (Customer #2 is cheerful again, smiles at cashier as he gives her the three pennies.)

    Cashier: *nervously* “Have a nice day…?”

    Customer #2: *cheerful* “You too!”

    An Impatient Patient

    | Yorkshire, England, UK | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Health & Body

    (It is a Sunday, so not many pharmacies are open. I’ve come in with my friend, who is rather unwell. The staff know my husband and I quite well, as we’re in there for our regular medication. Additionally, I have multiple piercings, a rather large tattoo on my nape of my neck, and teal green hair.)

    Pharmacist: “Won’t be long; please take a seat.”

    (We do, and I give the tech I know well a smile and a nod in greeting. Another customer enters.)

    Customer: “How long will it be for my medication?”

    Pharmacist: “About 20 minutes. We have a few people in front of you.”

    Customer: “Fine. I wouldn’t come here if you weren’t the only pharmacy open on a bloody Sunday; you’re always slow!”

    (The pharmacist brushes it off and goes to make up medications.)

    Customer: “I’m only having to wait this long because of stupid drug freaks.”

    (My friend turns to say something, but I put my hand on her arm and shake my head.)

    Customer: “Yeah, I mean you, green freak! What, come in for your methadone early, and they won’t give it to you?”

    (I’ve deliberately turned my back on him at this point.)

    Customer: “F****** druggies! We pay for you to get f****** high.”

    Pharmacy Tech: “Sir, can you watch your language please?”

    Customer: “No I f****** won’t! That stupid b**** is the reason I have to wait so f****** long! She’s strung out, look at the f****** circles under her eyes; they’re all bloodshot!”

    Pharmacy Tech: “I’ll have you know that young lady there is a full-time carer for her husband, who is disabled. And all this whilst being disabled herself. She looks like she hasn’t slept in a week because she probably hasn’t; between caring for him, volunteering with [national advice organization], and helping out her friend here who is rather unwell. And I don’t personally care if my taxes are being used to help her out; I wish there were more people like her out there!”

    Customer: “I… I… I demand to see a pharmacist!”

    Pharmacist: “Sir, I am not going to reprimand my tech for handling that much better than I would have. Do not insult my customers. Here is your prescription back; please fill it somewhere else.”

    (The customer stomps out.)

    Me: “I’m really sorry I caused that.”

    Pharmacist: “Eh, don’t worry; he’s always an a** when he comes in here. Besides, he has an exemption certificate, which means our taxes are paying for his meds too!”

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