November Theme Of The Month: Black Friday!

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!

S.H.I.E.L.D. Me From This Stupidity

| San Diego, CA | History

(A customer walking out of the theater for “Captain America” with her two kids starts talking to me. She’s about 45 years old.)

Customer: “My goodness, the Nazis were awful people!”

Me: “Yeah.”

Customer: “I’m just glad that terrible Red Skull got what was coming to him.”

Me: “Yeah, it was a pretty sweet ending.”

Customer: “It’s funny. I don’t remember learning about him or Captain America in the history books.”

Me: *thinking she’s joking* “Ha ha, yeah. Weird, right?”

Customer’s son, to me: “No, dude. She’s not kidding.”

Customer: “Kidding about what?”

(Embarrassed, her two kids try to walk briskly away from her.)

Customer: *chasing after her kids* “Whaaat?! What is it?!”

Born Yesterday

| Allentown, PA, USA | History

(Several teenage patrons are reading the ‘What does your birthday mean?’ keychains.)

Teenager #1: “Mine’s September 11th. Wasn’t that, like, a bad day in history or something?”

Me: “How old are you guys?”

All teens: “Thirteen!”

(I do quick mental math. I realize they were only six when the twin towers fell.)

Me: “Yes. It was a very bad day. Members of an extremist group hijacked some planes and–”

(While reading a keychain from the day the Berlin Wall fell, the second teenager interrupts me.)

Teenager #2: “Hey! What does ‘co-MUNE-ism’ mean?”

Spaced Out

| New Mexico, USA | History, Math & Science

(I work in the astronomy section of my local natural history museum, which features several large NASA photos. A visitor approaches me and points at a picture of an astronaut doing a spacewalk.)

Visitor: “What is that astronaut doing?”

Me: “Oh, he’s doing a spacewalk.”

Visitor: “You can walk…in space?!”

Me: “Well, no. They just sort of float there while tethered to the spacecraft. They only do it when they need to exit the shuttle to do repairs.”

Visitor: “Oh…” *points at a photo of Apollo 11 launching* “What’s that?”

Me: “That’s Apollo 11 launching to put the first humans on the moon.”

Visitor: “Oh…why didn’t they just build a big ladder?”

Little Nuggets Of Interest

| Dublin, Ireland | Awesome Customers, Family & Kids, History

(I am providing a tour through Ireland and explaining its history.)

Me: “…and then the Danish Vikings and the Norse Vikings got together, and created the most fantastic thing in the world. Does anyone know what that is?”

Young passenger: “Chicken nuggets!”

Me: “I was going to say red hair, but that answer just blows mine out of the water!”

So Pho, So Crazy

| London, UK | At The Checkout, Bigotry, History, Language & Words, Top

(I am working the tills at a supermarket. I am of Vietnamese descent but was born in London. An older gentleman comes through my till.)

Customer: *practically shouting* “Ni-Hao!”

Me: “Hello to you to sir, but that’s Chinese. I am actually Vietnamese.”

(I point to my name tag which in our shop goes by family name instead of first name. Mine is the very common ‘Nguyen’.)

Customer: “Don’t lie!”

Me: “I assure you sure I am Vietnamese.”

Customer: “There aren’t any Vietnamese people left!”

Me: “Pardon?”

Customer: “Yeah, the Americans killed them all back in the seventies or something.”

Me: “I think you may have your history confused. I assure you there is still a Vietnam and it is full of Vietnamese people.”

Customer: “Well I don’t know how you managed to escape but I wouldn’t say it so loudly. There might be Americans around looking for survivors.”

Me: *as I ring up his last item* “Probably a good idea. That will be £10.34 please.”

Customer: *as he pays* “Wouldn’t want a young lad like you getting caught!”

(The customer heads towards the exit, but unfortunately notices the security guard who also happens to be my brother. He is 6ft tall and a body-builder and I dread what might happen.)

Customer: “Ni-Hao!”

Brother: “Actually I’m Vietnamese.”

Customer: “Another one?! But the Americans wiped you all out!”

Brother: *standing to full height* “I think you might want to just keep on walking.”

Customer: “How dare you talk to me like that?! I’m going to call the Americans, and then they’ll come down here and shoot you!”