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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 Out Of Line

    | NH, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Bigotry

    (I am at a chain clothing store at the mall with my younger brother. A Hispanic family is being rung up in front of us, in the only open line. Another customer goes to the other end of the counter where nobody is working.)

    Customer: “I’d like to exchange these shirts. I bought two XLs, and my girlfriend thinks they’re too big on me.”

    Cashier: “Okay, sir, I’ll be with you shortly.”

    Customer: “And I need to return these shoes. Can I return everything at the shoe department?”

    Cashier: “No, sir, they can only take care of shoes in that department.”

    (At this point the customer’s phone starts ringing, and he answers it. He starts moaning about his day to the person on the other end, occasionally burping and scratching himself.)

    Customer: “Yeah, I’m here right now, but I’m stuck waiting because of these d*** Puerto Ricans who are trying to get 10% off on a f****** $10 purchase.”

    (The teenage cashier finishes ringing up the family, and since my brother is next in line, the cashier starts ringing him up.)

    Customer: “Hey! Why aren’t you waiting on me?!”

    Younger Brother: “I don’t know if you noticed, but there’s a LINE.”

    Customer: “Well, I started a new line. I’ve got places to go. I’m a rolling stone.”

    (Yes, he actually says “rolling stone.” My brother finishes, and I’m next in line so the cashier starts ringing me up.)

    Customer: “Un-f******-believable!”

    Me: “You know what? Maybe if you weren’t such an impatient, loudmouth, racist, a**-hole and actually got in line, you might just actually get rung up!”

    (The customer throws his stuff across the counter, even the stuff he is returning, and storms off.)

    Cashier: “Sorry about that.”

    Younger Brother: “No worries. You didn’t do anything wrong.”

    Me: “I’m a retail manager myself, and I was actually quite impressed with how cool headed you stayed dealing with that guy. Very nicely done!”

    Related:
    In Line And Out Of Line

    It’s Crazy Season(ing)

    , | ON, Canada | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Food & Drink

    (A customer has ordered a poutine, two large fries with seasoning and a rooter through the drive thru. My manager has informed me that it will take three minutes to cook up enough fries to fill the order, so I go to the window ask her to park her car while she waits.)

    Me: “Hi, so there going to be three minutes to cook—”

    Customer: “You forgot one of my drinks.”

    (Her order was for only one drink, but I just pour her another drink rather than argue.)

    Me: “There you go; sorry about that. It will just be three minutes for your fries—”

    Customer: “Can I get some ketchup packets too?”

    Me: “Sure I’ll put some in the bag. If you could—”

    Customer: “Can I get them now?”

    Me: “Here you go. So if you just want to—”

    Customer: “Can I get some more?”

    Me: “Sure. If you’ll go pull up in front of the building—”

    Customer: “Can I get a container of seasoning too?”

    Me: “Sure.”

    (I go ask the kitchen for a container of seasoning. While I’m waiting, my manager gives me a puzzled look and glances meaningfully at the drive thru timer; I just shrug and grimace. The customer looks inside the container when I give it to her.)

    Me: “Okay, so here you go. If you’ll pull up in front of the building, we’ll bring&mdash”

    Customer: “Can I get a lot more seasoning?”

    Me: “Sure.”

    Coworker: “She’s not gone yet?!”

    Me: “She wants more seasoning first.”

    (My manager’s just shaking his head.)

    Me: “So here you go. Just pull up and we’ll bring you—”

    Customer: “Yeah, yeah. I know.”

    (The customer drives through. At this point, she’s been sitting at our window for over two minutes, so her food is ready very quickly. I hand her the order out in the parking lot.)

    Me: “Alright, so there’s your poutine, and two large fries. Sorry about the wait. Have a—”

    Customer: scowls* “I hope no one spat in this!” *rolls up her window and drives away*

    Me: “—nice day.”

    Pay Attention

    | AZ, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Health & Body

    (One of our registers has been closed all day, with plenty of signs to say so. A customer runs up to me with a heavy accent.)

    Customer: “Pay! I need to pay!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but this register is currently closed. The nearest open registers are—”

    Customer: *holds out a sweater to me* “Pay?”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but this register is closed. The nearest open register is just down that way.”

    Customer: “No, no, I need to PAY!”

    Me: “Ma’am, this register is closed. Closed.” *I speak slowly* “I cannot work the register for you. They are locked. Only a manager can—”

    (The customer starts writhing around in a strange manner, with her sweater held over her stomach and her legs bowed together.)

    Customer: “Oh, I need to pay! So bad!”

    (One of my coworkers has a brainwave and comes up to the customer.)

    Coworker: “Excuse me, do you need a restroom? A bathroom?”

    Customer: *looks at my coworker cheerfully* “I can pay?”

    Coworker: “You need to… pee? A bathroom?”

    Customer: “Pay!”

    (The customer begins energetically following my coworker.)

    Coworker: “The bathrooms are just down this way; if you follow this aisle, turn left up here and—”

    Customer: “No! I need to PAY!”

    (The customer runs off, completely ignoring my coworker’s directions. We still aren’t entirely sure what she was asking for!)

    Service With A Smile

    , | Peoria, AZ, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Food & Drink

    (I am working the drive thru and I’m in a good mood.)

    Me: “Thank you, ma’am. Your total comes to $3.47 and a smile!”

    (I smile at her.)

    Customer: “Excuse me? How rude! How dare you?”

    Me: “Sorry?”

    Customer: “I don’t want to smile, and you can’t make me. Just give me my d*** food.”

    (The customer leaves.)

    Manager: “What was her problem?”

    Me: “I ‘charged’ her a smile.”

    Manager: “I hate drive thru.”

    Weighted Opinions

    | Vancouver, BC, Canada | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Technology

    (I am an early 20s, able-bodied male, with a fair bit of muscle, and I also happen to be the only employee in the store who fits such a description.)

    Me: “Hi, how are you today?”

    Customer: “Good, thank you. Can I get a 55-inch [brand] TV, please?”

    Me: “Why, certainly.”

    (I make a phone call to the back stockroom to request the customer’s TV. While I am processing the sale, the person bringing the rather large & heavy item is one of my young female coworkers.)

    Coworker: “Here’s your TV, ma’am! If you’re done shopping today, I will be glad to take this to your car!”

    Customer: *to me* “Shame on you, young man. Shame on you!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but I don’t quite follow.”

    Customer: “How dare you make such a fragile young girl bring out something so big! She could’ve seriously injured herself! You should be ashamed!”

    Me: “Believe me, ma’am: I would prefer to have done this job myself, but I have no control over my position. They put me on cash because I happened to be a little better at it, and my coworker here does this all the time.”

    Customer: “This is not right! This is not right at all! A tall, bulky man like you should do the heavy lifting! Not this poor skin and bones over here!”

    Coworker: “Ma’am, I’m seriously okay with this. When women fought for equal rights long ago, they knew that this was going to happen. And I’m glad it did.”

    Customer: “But girls sh—”

    Coworker: “Girl power! That’s what it is!”

    Customer: “Alright fine, just load the d*** TV into the truck already.”

    (My coworker helps the customer with her TV. A few weeks later, the same customer is at my till once again, this time, to buy a couch.)

    Customer: “Alright, I know that a couple of weeks ago, that nice, young girl proved more than capable of doing this. But I still feel really bad for her, so can you get somebody else to help me?”

    Me: “Not a problem, ma’am, she isn’t even in today.”

    (This time, I call my manager to bring out the couch.)

    Manager: “Okay, ma’am, where are you parked?”

    (The customer takes a good look at my manager. Although my manager is a man, he very much looks like he is approaching his 70s.)

    Customer: “This whole store is backwards!” *stomps out*

    Manager: “What the h*** was her problem?”

    Me: “Equal opportunity employment, apparently.”

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