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  • Had It Up To Their Neck With Bad Customers
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    Category: History

    Customers who don’t remember history are not only doomed to repeat it, but in some of these stories, to completely rewrite it!

    War Can Be Taxing

    | Coventry, CT, USA | History

    (I work at a house museum that specializes in Revolutionary War era history (1770s). In the gift shop, I am ringing a woman and her son out.

    Me: “Okay, so you’re buying a quill pen for $2 and some ink for $3. We don’t have tax, so your total will be $5 even.”

    Customer: “No taxes? Is that because taxes hadn’t been invented back then?”

    Me: “Actually, taxes are what we fought the whole Revolutionary War about.”

    Customer: “What war?”

    Pages Of A Post-Apocalyptic Persuasion

    | United Kingdom | History

    Customer: “I want a book to complete the set for my grandson.”

    Me: “Certainly, madam. Can I ask what you’re looking for?”

    Customer: “Well, he’s interested in history. I want to encourage him, so he’s already got books on World War 1 and World War 2. I want to get him the next one so he can be prepared before they do it at school.”

    Me: “Um, the next one?”

    Customer: “Yes. Haven’t you got anything on World War 3? I’ve looked all over.”

    Me: “I’m sorry, madam. I’m pretty certain we don’t have anything on that subject at the moment.”

    Customer: “Oh, never mind then. I’ll try a bigger bookshop.”

    History And Cookbooks Are Written By The Victors

    | Calgary, Alberta, Canada | Food & Drink, Health & Body, History

    (An older lady is looking through the buffet, when she comes to our Japanese section. She eyes the sashimi.)

    Customer: “Oh! Is this smoked salmon?”

    Me: “No ma’am, it’s actually sashimi, the Japanese way of serving fish, so it’s cleaned and served raw.”

    Customer: “Raw? That can’t be healthy! Are you sure you are allowed to serve raw fish? Someone could get sick!”

    Me: “I can assure you, raw salmon won’t get anyone sick. We have served this for years.”

    Customer: “But it’s raw! Someone will get sick! That’s what raw fish does – gets people sick!”

    Me: “Ma’am, the Japanese have been eating raw fish for centuries. I think it will be OK.”

    Customer: “Well, they also lost World War 2. I don’t think this is safe!”

    Me: “…”

    Either She’s A Revisionist Scholar, Or She Needs A Dictionary

    , | Iowa, USA | History

    Me: “Ma’am, may I help you find a particular title?”

    Customer: “I don’t know exactly what I want. I just want a good book to read.”

    Me: “Is there a topic that you are especially interested in?”

    Customer: “I like historical stuff.”

    Me: “Great! What kind of history specifically?”

    Customer: *stares blankly*

    Me: “For instance, a particular time period, or the history of a certain country?”

    Customer: “American history, obviously.”

    Me: “We have some really great American history books, right over here.”

    (I lead her to the proper section and pull a few titles to show her.)

    Customer: “These are all about stuff that really happened. I want a story.”

    Me: “Okay, so, historical fiction then? I’m sure we can find something for you.”

    Customer: “No! I want something like this…”

    (She gestures to a book she rejected, a non fiction title about American history.)

    Customer: “… only I want it to be made up.”

    Me: “Right, historical fiction. Let’s start with a time frame within American history and I’m sure we can find something.”

    Customer: *sighs melodramatically* “I don’t want FICTION, I want a book with a story that is MADE UP!”

    It Was Either That Or Get Shocked By The Kite Again

    | Los Angeles, CA, USA | History

    Customer: “I need a biography of Benjamin Franklin.”

    Me: *I take him to the history section* “Here’s his autobiography.”

    Customer: “That means he wrote it himself, right?”

    Me: “Yes, that’s correct.”

    Customer: *eyes widening* “They could do that back then?”


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