Category: Language & Words

This category features customers whose mishandling of vocabulary and grammar are so bad that we literally have no words to describe them!

Morons In Disguise

| NY, USA | Extra Stupid, Language & Words, Technology

(I work for a large cable TV company’s call center. I get a call and my customer mentions having problems with the image looking pixelated. This company gives customers a cable box to get their channels; this is the troubleshooting target.)

Me: “Okay, I’ll be sending a signal to the box and it’ll reboot. It is possible that you see some blue screens while it does that. This completely normal.”

Customer: “Okay.”

(This cable boxes usually take 2 to 7 minutes to reboot. 12 minutes after…)

Customer: “Okay, the screen went black now. Looks like it’ll restart again.”

Me: “That won’t happen; the box is looking fine from my end. Can you please turn it on and check on the channels you had issues with?”

Customer: “I don’t know. It looks very weird…”

Me: “Does the channel look weird?”

Customer: “No, the box! It has some strange symbols on it.”

Me: “Can you describe those to me?”

Customer: “They look like alien symbols, Transformers, like! You know? Their way of writing stuff?”

(At this point of the evening, on a Saturday, after this long call and three energy drinks, I take a look outside the window to check I’m still on planet Earth.)

Me: “That’s very strange. The box is only supposed to show the time. Can you check all cables in the back of the box are not loose?”

Customer: “They’re tight! What’s going on?! What did you do?! I need my TV! Fix this NOW!”

Me: “Can you turn on the box, from the button panel in the front of it, please? It’s the last button to the right.”

Customer: “I pressed the button and nothing happened. The first symbol just changed and looks like a ‘G,’ but weird looking. You have to get this fixed!”

(Another eight minutes go by trying and trying to get the box to turn on, assuming the display screen is damaged.)

Customer: “YOU’RE USELESS! THIS WAS A WORKING BOX WITH ALL THE OTHER CHANNELS AND NOW I’VE LOST THEM ALL!”

Me: “I’m really sorry about this, is the first time I’ve seen someth—” *brief pause*

Customer: “HELLO!?”

Me: “Can you please press the first button to the left?”

Customer: “It worked! It’s on! The TV’s back! What the h*** happened?!”

Me: “Your box was upside down.”

Customer: “…”

Me: “Hello?”

Customer: *click*

(I think Megatron abducted her…)

A Chain Reaction

, | TX, USA | Food & Drink, Funny Names, Language & Words

(I stop at a regional fast food chain restaurant for dinner. As I pay, I accidentally pull out a credit card for a big box chain, but realize my mistake and switch cards before swiping. The cashier talks to someone in the drive-through…)

Cashier: “Welcome to [Big Box Chain]. I’ll be with you in a minute.”

(I’m not sure I heard that right, but then…)

Kitchen Worker: “Uh, [Cashier], you realize this is [Fast Food Chain] and not [Big Box Chain].”

Me: *loud enough they can hear me in the kitchen* “It’s my fault; I took out my [Fast Food Chain] card and he…” *trail off as I realize* “…now I’m doing it.”

A Lack Of Branding Understanding, Part 2

| Escondido, CA, USA | Food & Drink, Language & Words

(A couple is ordering at the concessions stand.)

Customer: “I’ll have a medium Coke.”

(I get the rest of the order ready and then hand her the Coke.)

Customer: “No, I don’t want Coke, I want root beer.”

Customer’s Husband: “You said Coke.”

Customer: *sighs* “But I didn’t mean Coke. By ‘Coke’ I meant ‘soda!’ She didn’t ask me what kind of soda I wanted!”

Related:
A Lack Of Branding Understanding

Not A Productive Conversation

| KS, USA | Bizarre, Language & Words

(We are a company that deals with international calls on a daily basis, though I personally don’t that often. I receive a call that goes directly to my phone, not through the main system.)

Customer: *unintelligible Spanish*

Me: “Hello? No hablo mucho español” *I don’t speak much Spanish*

Customer: “Hello?” *unintelligible Spanglish*

Me: “This is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Customer: *very thick accent* You speak English, yes?”

Me: “Yes, I do.”

Customer: “Then let’s speak English.”

Me: “Sounds good! What can I help you with?”

Customer: “I had some questions.”

Me: “Okay? Is this pertaining to [Product]?”

Customer: “[Product]? Do you have a website?”

Me: “Yeah! It’s [website]!”

Customer: “Okay. okay. And you sell what again?”

Me: [Product]. Did you need help with something?”

Customer: “You have a nice voice.”

Me: “…”

Customer: “Would you give me your phone number?”

Me: *creeped out* “I’m sorry. I can’t give that information to you.”

Customer: “You don’t want to talk on the phone to someone in Spain?”

Me: “No.”

Customer: “No?”

Me: “No.”

Customer: “No?”

Me: “No. No es bueno para mi.” *It’s not good for me*

Customer: “Oh! You speak Spanish?”

Me: “Un pequeño” *A little*

Customer: “How wonderful! We could talk in Spanish and English over the phone!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir. Was there something you wanted?”

Customer: “We could be private phone buddies if you’d like.”

Me: “No, I don’t think so.”

Customer: “You have such a lovely voice. And you seem very nice and beautiful.”

Me: “I’m sorry. Please do not call back unless you have questions about [Product]. Have a good day.” *hangs up*

Half A Mind To Watch What You Say

| Veron, NJ, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Language & Words

(A father and son check out books and DVDs.)

Me: “That’s it. Books are due in two weeks and the DVDs are due in one. But you can return the books at the same time as the DVDs are due, if you have a mind to. Thank you.”

(A few minutes later, as they go in the children’s room:)

Son: “What did she mean by that, Daddy?”

Father: “Well, I think she’s from down South and it’s just a saying…”

(I’m watching what “down South” expressions I use now…)

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