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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!

    Fails To Register

    | Nanuet, NY, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid

    (My store has three registers. I am stocking a shelf when a customer stops in front of the registers.)

    Customer: “Which register?”

    Me: “I can ring you up on the second register, ma’am.”

    Customer: *points to the third register* “That one?”

    Me: “No, the second one.”

    Customer: *points to the first register* “That one?”

    Me: “No, ma’am, the second register. This one here, with the light on.” *points at the second register*

    Customer: *angry* “Why isn’t this more clearly marked!? You should make it clearer which one is the one you’re on!”

    (Despite what I’ve said, she still walks over to the third register and drops her items on the counter. I walk over to the second register and put in my code.)

    Me: “I’ll take you over here, ma’am.”

    Customer: “You should’ve said that before I put my stuff down!”

    Putting Pickles Before People Will Put You In A Pickle

    , | Raleigh, NC, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Food & Drink, Holidays, Theme Of The Month

    (It’s very close to Christmas and I’m on my break in the mall’s food court. The line I’m in is long; I notice there’s a customer with a young daughter throwing a fit, which is holding up the line.)

    Customer: “I specifically said no pickles! I’m a very busy woman; I don’t have time for you to correct your stupid mistake! You should have gotten it right the first d*** time!”

    (The customer continues to rant, at length, about how poor the service is and how she’s too busy to deal with it. This goes on for a few minutes while her daughter looks embarrassed and the rest of the customers in line are getting agitated. Finally, I decide to speak up.)

    Me: “Hey! Lady! It’s Christmas! We’re all busy. So how about you shut up, take the pickles off your own d*** sandwich, and stop acting like an a** in front of your kid? We all have lives we’d like to get back to!”

    (The customer tries to respond, but stops when she realizes the rest of the customers in line are applauding. She takes her food and drags her daughter off with a huff. The other customers actually push me to the front of the line, where the cashier looks nearly in tears, but is very relieved.)

    Cashier: “Thank you so much.”

    Me: “You’re welcome. Nobody deserves that kind of attitude today!”

    (The cashier gave me a free drink, and the man behind me in line insisted on paying for my order out of ‘The Christmas Spirit’.)

    Thinking Outside The Box, Part 3

    | Ottawa, ON, Canada | At The Checkout, Holidays, Spouses & Partners, Theme Of The Month, Top

    (I work for a big box retail location. It has been a busy day and I have been alone for a lot of my shift. I have been helping an elderly couple look for a TV for their grandchild for Christmas.)

    Wife: “I think this is the one that we want. Can we test it out to make sure it works?”

    Me: “Sure, just give me a couple minutes to set it up…”

    (I set every thing up and get everything going for them. This whole time, the husband hasn’t said a single thing.)

    Me: “Every thing seems to be in working order, but just in case, you do have 90 days to return it.”

    Wife: “That sounds great! By the way, do you have one that hasn’t been opened? We’re giving it as a gift.”

    Me: “Umm…”

    Husband: *to wife* “Are you a moron? You had him open it up to make sure it worked and now you want one that he didn’t open? We’re taking the open one and if she doesn’t like it, we’ll return it.”

    (The wife had a shocked expression on her face but didn’t protest it. I, on the other hand, wanted to shake that man’s hand for being the smartest person I had dealt with all day.)

    Related:
    Thinking Outside The Box, Part 2

    The Price Was A Steal

    | OH, USA | At The Checkout, Criminal/Illegal

    (I’m watching the register for a coworker on his break. A young man enters the store and sets a paper bag on the counter.)

    Customer: “I need to do a return.” *empties contents of bag onto the counter*

    (I pick up the two gas fittings: one has a tag, the other is completely stripped and destroyed. I look at the receipt and the one with the tag isn’t on it.)

    Me: “Sir, this fitting isn’t on this receipt. Did you have another receipt for it?”

    Customer: “No. I don’t have a receipt for it because I didn’t pay for it.”

    Me: *stunned* “Wh-what? Did… did you just take it then?”

    Customer: “Yeah, I was going to pay for it and I realized I didn’t have enough money to buy it, so I just took it home. But it didn’t fit, either. So my buddy came out and fixed the problem for me and I don’t need it anymore. Sorry.”

    Me: “Oh, um, well… okay. I’m just going to keep this one, then.”

    (I take the stolen fitting and place it in the return box, but then I look at the other fitting.)

    Me: “You really did a number on this one, though.”

    Customer: “Yeah, it was the wrong thread, I think. I tried to twist it on but I ended up stripping it.”

    Me: “Well, I can’t return this it since you destroyed it. It’s yours for life now.”

    (I hand him back his receipt and the broken fitting.)

    Customer: “Well, I thought I’d try anyway. Thank you.” *leaves*

    (The next customer in line is just as stunned as I am. He sets his things on the counter and watches the young man leave.)

    Customer: “Did he just return something he stole and apologized for it because it was the wrong size?”

    (I nod.)

    Customer: “Man, makes you wonder what he would have done if he actually stole the right part!”

    Closed Store, Open Kindness

    | NC, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Money

    (We close in five minutes and since it has been a slow night, my coworker and I have turned off the lights in the cases and wrapped the pastries. A customer walks in and my coworker turns on the lights in the cases.)

    Customer: “Are you closed?”

    Me: “No, sir. We close in just a few minutes.”

    Customer: “Oh! I’m so sorry. I just need to pick up some coffee beans and dessert. I’ll be fast!”

    Me: “Don’t worry, you’re okay.”

    (I get his coffee beans while my coworker cuts him a slice of cake. She goes to the back to wash the knife while I ring him up.)

    Me: “Your total is [total.]”

    Customer: “Here you go.” *hands me his credit card* “I am so sorry; I thought you closed at 9:00.”

    Me: “It’s no problem, really.”

    (He looks into the tip jar, which is empty because we have already split the tips.)

    Customer: “Oh, your tip jar is empty. Well here, you two can split this.” *drops money into jar*

    Me: “Thank you, have a good night!”

    Customer: “You too!”

    (I expected a dollar in the tip jar, but it was a $10 bill!)


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