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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!

    Likely Story, Unlikely Store

    | Wayne, NJ, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid

    (A woman walks up to the customer service desk.)

    Me: “Hello, ma’am. How are you today?”

    Customer: “I’d like to return these sandals. They broke when I was wearing them, and I fell.”

    Me: “Okay ma’am, not a problem.”

    (I look at the sandals, and they are not a brand that we sell.)

    Me: “Ma’am, these sandals actually aren’t from this store.”

    Customer: “Of course they are! I bought them just a few weeks ago, right on the rack over there!”

    (Even if she had purchased them here, the rack she is pointing to is in the complete opposite direction of where are sandals are.)

    Me: “Ma’am, I’m sorry, but this brand isn’t one that we sell here. I don’t know where you got them, but it wasn’t from this store.”

    Customer: “This is ridiculous! I bought these from this store! And I fell in them and hurt myself! I’m going to sue you! I got hurt wearing a pair of your sandals!”

    Me: “One moment, ma’am… I will call over a manager to assist you.”

    (I call the manager, who heads over pretty quickly. The customer continues ranting in much the same manner.)

    Customer: “I’m going to sue you and this store! I know for a fact that I got these here, and—”

    (She has stopped mid-sentence because she is looking down at her sandals. As she does so, her eyes grow wide, and she becomes very pale.)

    Customer: “…Oh. I don’t want to speak to the manager.”

    Me: “I’m sorry?”

    Customer: “I don’t want to speak to anyone. I’m sorry, this is the wrong store!” *leaves*

    Taking His Wife’s Baggage Out On You

    | Nanaimo, BC, Canada | At The Checkout

    (I am working as an assistant manager at a department store and have been called to the refund desk. The clerk explains that a man at the desk wants to pick up some shopping that his wife has apparently left to be picked up. Unfortunately, we can’t find the packages.)

    Me: “I’m sorry, sir. We can’t find the purchases. Do you know what register your wife went through?”

    Customer: “The one up there.” *points to the entrance to the mall*

    Me: “Okay, I’ll call up there and see if the bags are there.”

    (I call up to the register area and ask the cashiers if there are any bags left for pickup; none are left.)

    Me: “I’m sorry, sir. There are no bags at the checkouts either. What time was your wife here?”

    Customer: “About 10 am…”

    (I know we only had one cashier on at 10am, and that her shift had already ended. I try and call her, but am unable to reach the cashier and verify the story.)

    Me: “I’m sorry, sir, I can’t reach the cashier.”

    Customer: “I don’t give a s*** whether you reached her or not. Just go and get me what she bought and give it to me”.

    (Obviously, I don’t know what she bought, nor am I giving him anything for free until I can verify his story.)

    Me: “I’m sorry; I can’t do that until I can find out what has happened.”

    Customer: “Give me my stuff!” *starts swearing*

    Me: “I’m sorry, I can’t do that right now.”

    (Suddenly, the customer takes a roundhouse swing at me. He does this a few times, when another customer behind him grabs the first customer by the shoulders, spins him around, and shoves him away.)

    Other Customer: “Get out of here before you get into trouble!”

    (The customer stomps off, and out of the store. A few hours later, I’m on the floor with my manager. I happen to look down the aisle, and see the same customer staring at me. Thankfully, it’s about 75 feet away so I have some time to think as he’s coming towards me. Anticipating another confrontation, I prepare to defend myself and tense up for a fight. The customer approaches me.)

    Customer: “Hey, I wanted to apologize for the way I acted this morning. My wife had already picked up the stuff!”

    Ring Me Up And Shut Me Down

    | WA, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Workers, Top

    (I’m grabbing a few sundries after filling my car up. The only other people in the store are a young girl at the register, and a customer she’s serving. I take no interest in them till I suddenly hear the customer screaming.)

    Customer: “Get me your manager, now! You’ve worked your last shift at this place, you worthless b****!”

    Cashier: “I certainly will ma’am, but I was merely—”

    Customer: “No! Not another word! I am the customer; the manager will believe whatever I tell him. Now stop stalling and get him for me!”

    (The cashier sighs and disappears into the backroom, returning with said manager a moment later.)

    Manager: “Is there a problem, ma’am?”

    Customer: “I’ll say there is! This incompetent s*** rang my gum up twice, and then laughed in my face when I told her to correct the error. I’m certain she rang all my other stuff up incorrectly as well. I demand you kick her out to the curb!”

    Manager: “I see…” *to the cashier* “Is this true?”

    Cashier: “Well, just the part about ringing up her gum twice. I apologized and fixed the error immediately.”

    Customer: “Bulls***! You’re lying!”

    Manager: “Could you bring the transaction up please?”

    Customer: “She’s lying! She f***ing laughed in my face!”

    Cashier: “Ma’am, I was only smiling. I promise.”

    Manager: *checking the register screen* “Hmmm, and I see she did correct her error, and everything else was rung up properly.”

    Customer: “FIRE HER!”

    Manager: “Ma’am, may I ask you a question first? Namely, who are you?”

    (She states full name, job title, company and the location of her office, which is a small brokerage firm in the nearby town.)

    Manager: “Hmm, can’t say I’ve ever heard of them, or you. Nevertheless let me ask you this: why should I fire this girl, whom I’ve worked with for three years, has never missed a day without good reason, is always on time for her shift, and has been described by several of our regulars as one of the most courteous ladies they’ve ever met, over a simple mistake which, as I’m seeing here, she quickly corrected?”

    Woman: “Wha? But… I… you… because I’m the customer!”

    Manager: *nods* “Well, I’m sorry, ma’am, but I don’t see how that’s a valid reason to side with someone I don’t know from Adam, and thus lose a model employee whom I know to be perfectly trustworthy and respectful. Is there anything else we can help you with?”

    (With that, the customer screams, shoves what’s on the counter at the manager and storms out.)

    Manager: *to the cashier* “If I believed every windbag who came in here ranting incoherently, I’d never be able to hang onto any staff. I’ll be in my office if you need me again.” *disappears into the back*

    Me: *stunned* “My God. That was awesome!”

    Cashier: *beaming brightly* “Whole reason why I love my job!”

    Time Waits For Slow Man, Part 2

    | Waynesville, NC, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Top

    (I’m in line at a grocery store in a tiny town in the North Carolina mountains. In front of me is an old woman who’s moving rather slowly. Behind me is a young suit who has no patience.)

    Old Woman: “Now is this one on sale, sugar?”

    Young Suit: *muttering loudly behind her* “This is bulls***.”

    Old Woman: “I got me two, no, three coupons.”

    Young Suit: *even louder* “Some of us have places to be.”

    Old Woman: “I think I got me two pennies, darling. Just a minute.”

    Young Suit: “Come on, come on, get your a** in gear!”

    Old Woman: “Young man, if you was a-wantin’ to get there so early, you should have left home sooner!”

    Related:
    Time Waits For Slow Man

    He Got Served While Getting Served

    | CA, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Money, Top

    (A customer is debating the price of items with me. I have told him several times they are not on sale. This has taken almost ten minutes, and the people behind him are starting to look very annoyed.)

    Me: “Sir, I assure you those items are not on sale.”

    Customer #1: “You b****! They are too! You’re just trying to rob me! Where the h*** is your manager?”

    Me: “I am the manager on duty. ”

    Customer #1: *grabs my shirt collar* “That’s bulls***! Women can’t run stores. You’re too dumb! Especially your age!”

    (At that moment, another customer, Customer #2, intervenes. Note that Customer #2 is a petite lady in her late twenties, about as old as me. She stands on her toes, grabs Customer #1′s shoulder, and yanks him around. Then, she slaps him across the face.)

    Customer #1: *stunned* “Wh-wha? Who the h*** do you think you are?”

    Customer #2: “You work at [very successful local legal firm], right?”

    Customer #1: *nods*

    Customer #2: “Well, I own [very successful local legal firm], and you don’t work there anymore.”

    (Customer #1 finally recognizes Customer #2 and gets a horrified look of realization on his face. He sprints out of the store, leaving his groceries on the counter.)

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