October Theme Of The Month: Halloween!

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!

Their Own Private Joke

| Spain | Hotels & Lodging, Language & Words, Rude & Risque, Tourists/Travel

(This happens on a class trip to Spain after a girl realizes she left her comb at home.)

Girl: *walks up to front desk* “Do you have any combs?”

Employee: “No hablo Ingles.”

Girl: *in Spanish* “Necesito un pene, por favor.”

Employee: *laughs hysterically*

Girl: *angry* “Hey! Necesito un pene!” *pantomimes brushing hair*

Employee: *realizes what’s going on, takes out comb, and hands it to girl*

Girl: “Sí!”

Employee: “Ese es ‘un peine.'” *That’s ‘un peine.’* “Un pene es:” *points to his privates*

Girl: “Oh. S***!”

Totally ‘Tanga’

| Hastings, NE, USA | Awesome Workers, Crazy Requests, Language & Words, Technology

Customer: “What do you mean you don’t have the parts on hand to fix my TV?”

Me: “Well, your TV is 12 years old. I can have the parts in a day or two.”

(The customer starts every cuss word in the book, yelling at me about my incompetence and lack of skill.)

Me: *stands there and waits until she pauses for a breath, when she does…* “Ma’am, would you like to learn some Tagalog?”

Customer: “Huh?…What’s Tagalog?”

Me: “It’s the language of the Philippines.”

Customer: “Why would I need to learn that?”

Me: *in the same, low toned and calm voice I have been using during her entire screaming session* “So you don’t have to use the same seven cuss words over and over.”

(Right after saying that, I calmly picked up my tools and headed for the door. The customer, red faced and stuttering, tried to yell at me some more, but was at a complete loss for words.)

Don’t Read, And Pay The Price

| Moncton, NB, Canada | Crazy Requests, Extra Stupid, Language & Words

(Our policy is, and has always been, that 30-days notice is required to cancel any service; this is clearly noted on all customer bills.)

Customer: “Why am I being charged an extra 30 days for service I didn’t use?”

Me: “Sir, you called on March 21 and requested that the account be closed on the 30th.”

Customer: “So?”

Me: “Well, 30 days’ notice is required to cancel any service. It’s indicated on every bill you receive—”

Customer: “What? You expect me to read?!”

Making A Queer Choice

| NM, USA | Bizarre, Language & Words

(I work in a call center. I am asking a customer to read out a serial number phonetically.)

Customer: “…Q as in ‘Queer.'”

(The customer passes for a moment.)

Customer: “I’m sorry; I don’t know if that was politically correct. It means other things, right?”

Me: *trying not to laugh* “Yes, sure. I can assure you it means other things.”

Lost On The Train And In Translation

| England, UK | Language & Words, Tourists/Travel, Transportation

(I work in the ticket office at a train station. One night a customer with very poor English comes up to me.)

Customer: “Cawidge.”

Me: “I’m sorry, where are you headed?”

Customer: “Cawidge.”

Me: “Cambridge?”

Customer: “No, I go Cawidge.”

Me: “Can you write that for me?” *I hand him a piece of paper and a pen.*

Customer: *shouts something in a foreign language to someone on the other side of the station, who comes running up.*

Customer’s Friend: “He go Cawidge.”

Me: “Yes, can you write that for me please?”

Customer’s Friend: “Uh… Cawidge. Brummum?”

Me: “Birmingham?”

Customer’s Friend: *excitedly* “Yeah, yeah! Brummum! Brummum Cawidge!”

*it suddenly clicks*

Me: “Oh, University of Birmingham?”

Customer: “Yeah, cawidge!”

Me: “Sure, that’ll be [price]. In future though, don’t ask for the College, ask for University of Birmingham. Okay?”

Customer: “Yew… nee… verse… Brummum!”

Me: “… Yeah, that’ll do.”

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