October Theme Of The Month: Halloween!

Category: Health & Body

Stupid customers in stories are bad enough. However, dealing with a customer’s health issues may be hazardous to your own health! Please consult your doctor before continuing.

Faker Moaning About Faking

| Devon, England, UK | Bad Behavior, Bigotry, Criminal/Illegal, Health & Body

(I use a wheelchair. The shop has customer wheelchairs marked very clearly with the name of the centre the shop is in. I’m supposed to be working on tills, but due to being short staffed, I’m helping out with stacking the shelves.)

Customer: “Excuse me?”

Me: “Yes?”

Customer: “I was wondering if I could use that wheelchair?”

(I assume she meant a wheelchair, rather than the one I’m currently sitting in.)

Me: “Of course. If you head over to the door, the security guy there can get one for you.”

Customer: “You want me to walk over?”

Me: “I’ll go and ask him. Feel free to take a seat, if it’s more comfortable for you.”

Customer: “No, it’s fine, thanks. I guess I’ll go ask myself. I mean, if I have to use one of those ugly things.”

Me: “Yeah, they’re not the best are they? But it’s really no trouble for me to go over there, if you want me to.”

(The customer shakes her head, and sits on one of the stacking stools, Maybe ten minutes later, she’s still sitting there, and all I’ve got left to shelve are things that are usually way above my head. Since I’m having a pretty good day, I figure what the hell, and start standing for short periods of time so shelve the lighter stuff, something I’m more than capable of doing.)

Customer: “How dare you!”

Me: “Excuse me?”

Customer: “How dare you sit around in that chair all day, and then start standing up with boxes just like anyone else? People like you make my life so much harder, you know that?”

Me: “I’m sorry, I don’t understand what—”

Customer: “I have an invisible disability. People like you who go around faking for sympathy and making everyone think I’m a faker too.”

Me: “I have an invisible disability. Hence the chair.”

Customer: “Well, then you shouldn’t be standing up, should you?”

Me: “I’m sorry, but… you walked into the shop.”

Customer: “I don’t see what that has to do with anything.”

Me: “You don’t?”

Customer: “I want to speak to your manager.”

(I radioed my manager over. She took a while to get there, so I carried on shelving. While I’m standing up, and my back is turned, the customer took my wheelchair and vanished off into the shop. At a loss for what to do, I took the stool she vacated and waited for my manager to show up, while the security guy at the door – visible from my aisle – took off after the woman. I sat there for almost an hour until security finally tracked the woman down in another shop in the centre. They tried for a while to get her to give my chair back, all while she accused them of discrimination, saying they think she’s an idiot who can’t tell the difference between a centre chair and mine because she’s disabled. Eventually, once security had radioed police, she gave it back. She was still sitting on the floor, yelling about fakers ruining her life, when the police arrived.)

Customers Without Filters

| Vancouver, BC, Canada | Crazy Requests, Health & Body, Technology

(I’m a server at a popular family restaurant that normally bends over backwards trying to accommodate its guests as best we can. However, we are not a fine dining restaurant by any means. I’m serving a table of two middle-aged women. Note: the tap water in our municipality is consistently ranked as one of the cleanest in the world and is better than most bottled waters.)

Guest #1: “Is your water filtered? I only drink filtered water.”

Me: “No, our water isn’t filtered. We do carry several kinds of bottled water if you like, though.” *I list them for her*

Guest #2: “It’s disgusting that people expect you to pay for bottled water. Water should be free.”

Me: “Yes, ma’am. Our water by the glass is free, though as I said, unfiltered. However, we have to pay for the bottled water so we do have to charge for that.”

Guest #1: *huffs* “Fine, I’ll have a glass of water. Are your ice cubes made from filtered water? I only want them in my glass if they’re filtered.”

(Our ice machine is the size of an average car and is made of complex machinery.)

Me: “I’m actually not sure if the ice machine has filters as part of its system. It’s probably best to assume it doesn’t. I’ll bring you your water without ice.”

Guest #1: “No, find out if the machine filters its ice and come back.”

Me: “If you prefer, ma’am.”

(I go to the back and ask the kitchen manager. He has no idea either. We both look at the machine, but there’s no way to tell from the outside if there’s filters. There’s a huge sign on the outside saying “Danger: Do Not Open! Extreme Risk of Electric Shock” so we decide not to open it to look. I go back to the table with no new knowledge.)

Guest #1: “Well?!”

Me: “I’m very sorry, ma’am. Both the kitchen manager and I looked at the machine, but we couldn’t tell if there are filters without taking apart the machine. It’s probably safest to assume there aren’t any. Shall I bring you your water without ice?”

Guest #1: “I don’t understand why you can’t just take apart the machine to find out for me. This is ridiculous.”

(I try for several minute to politely explain the size and complexity of the machine and why this isn’t really a feasible request. She constantly interrupts to insist that it must be possible to find this out and that I need to find a way. I have zero mechanical knowledge and as far as I know none of my coworkers know anything about machines. This machine would require a mechanic to take it apart.)

Guest #1: *finally* “Fine, I’ll have a glass of water with the ice on the side.”

Guest #2: “By the way, we have been sitting here forever and no one has taken our order! I just want you to know that the service here is terrible!”

(I choose not to mention that I’ve been at their table the whole time attempting to do just that. I also choose not to point out that they were just demanding that I leave their table for what would probably be several hours of mechanical work in order to answer a question for them.)

Should Have Known All A Bong

| New Castle, DE, USA | Criminal/Illegal, Health & Body

(I’ve driven a friend of mine to go get his wisdom teeth taken out. My friend happens to be a smoker, and I’ve noticed an unusual smell in his car that I’d been unable to place for about a month. At the end of the appointment, the assistants are talking to us about how he can take care of himself while healing.)

Assistant: “And [My Name] says you smoke, so that’s something we need you to not do while healing. Okay?”

Friend: “Can I hit a bong?”

(Well, now I know what that smell was.)

Shake Up The Calorie Count

| Perth, WA, USA | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Health & Body

(Our shake/sundae machine is down for cleaning and boy, did that create a lot of unhappy customers.)

Customer: “I’d like a chicken burger meal with a chocolate shake, please.”

Me: “Sorry, our shake machine is down for maintenance at the moment. Would you like to try a chocolate frappe instead?”

Customer: “What’s in that?”

Me: “Blended ice, chocolate, and whipped cream on top. It’s—”

Customer: “Oh, no, that’d have way too much sugar and fat. I’ll have a [Soda] instead.”

Me: “…Okay, then.”

(Frappes have a lower calorie count than both shakes AND [Soda]. I just… sigh.)

Needs An Urgent Prescription Of Common Decency

| MA, USA | Bad Behavior, Crazy Requests, Health & Body

(My wife is a pharmacist for a large chain. She works overnight shifts. A woman comes in with a prescription from the ER. She notes that there are allergies on the patient’s record which may be present in the medication.)

Pharmacist: “There is a possible allergy with this; I’ll need to check the ingredients for this manufacturer.”

Customer: “You don’t need to check that. I’ve taken this before. I have twins at home and I’m in a hurry.”

Pharmacist: “What kind of reactions do you get?”

Customer: “Well, my tongue and throat swell up, and I get bad rashes on my feet.”

(What she is describing is anaphylaxis and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome respectively, both serious and potentially lethal reactions even on their own. Unsurprisingly my wife feels the patient’s assurance isn’t sufficient and decides to check the ingredients to be sure it won’t kill her. The customer is obviously pissed that she has to wait. Unfortunately the ingredients show the allergens are present.)

Pharmacist: “I’m sorry, there are [allergens] present in this medication and I can’t fill it. However, I will try to contact the ER doctor to get a substitute.”

(The patient begins to give death looks and muttering angrily. The medication in question is a narcotic and a controlled substance. The laws which control the filling of the medications require a hard copy, and cannot usually be taken over the phone at all. The only way around this is to use certain emergency protocols which require the doctor to get the prescription hard copy to the pharmacy in a very short time. This is always a risky business for pharmacists in case the hard copy doesn’t make it. Most of the time a pharmacy will just refuse to fill the script, which they are within their rights to do. Against the odds, my wife manages to get the ER doctor on the phone. He agrees to switch the medication to Percoset and says he will personally deliver the hard copy in a couple hours after his shift ends.)

Pharmacist: “We got the prescription changed to Percoset, and the doctor will bring—”

Customer: “I don’t want Tylenol.”

(The customer begins getting even louder and more surly and increases the death stare. My wife knows that this customer has just decided to be angry and will just escalate it from here.)

Pharmacist: “Please, just stop. I can’t fill something that might hurt you. I’ll contact the doctor again to try to get something else.”

(She gets a hold of him and they switch it to Oxycodone. The doctor will still bring the new prescription over. During the call another doctor calls in on the second line. My wife briefly switches over to speak to them before resuming the original call. This takes about a minute. At this point not only has the patient been saved from a possible allergic reaction, but a doctor who has been who-knows-how-long at the ER is going to make a special trip on his own time to make sure she can get her prescription.)

Pharmacist: “Okay, we’ve got it switched to Oxy—”

Customer: “I don’t want to hear what you have to say.”

(She holds up her hand like a mouth and does a movement which clearly indicates “shut up”. My wife is livid at this point, but tries to focus on what she’s doing. She goes to ring her up.)

Pharmacist: “I think it might be better if [coworker from the front end] rang you out.”

Customer: “I think it might be.”

(My wife stepped away and tried to calm down and get her focus back on her other work. While Coworker was ringing the customer out she could hear her complaining about her. One of her complaints was that she took a minute to talk to on the phone to the other doctor. The punchline to all this is that the patient was given some pills at the ER and could have gone straight home with the meds if she was really in such a hurry, and filled the prescription the next day.)

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