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  • Always Time For A Rhyme
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  • 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!

    Job Unap-para-ent

    | Salt Lake City, UT, USA | Extra Stupid, Language & Words

    (I am a paralegal. Paralegals are trained in the law, but they are not lawyers, and are prohibited from giving legal advice. I am also a young woman. I am helping two elderly clients when this happens.)

    Me: “Hello, clients! I’m the attorney’s paralegal, and I will be assisting today.”

    Client: “Oh, I see. So…”

    (The client proceeds to ask a question that would clearly be the practice of law if I answered it.)

    Me: “We’ll have to ask the attorney on that one. That goes out of scope for me as a paralegal.”

    Client: “What do you mean? I thought you were just like him! Why can’t you answer my questions?”

    Me: “I’m a paralegal, sir, not a lawyer.”

    Client: “Oh. I thought that was what they called lady lawyers… paralegals.”

    Me: “Um, nope. Paralegals do a lot of legal work, we set appoints, do research and writing, and a good deal of interviewing, but we don’t represent people in court or give legal advice.”

    Client: “SO you’re basically a glorified secretary?”

    (I breathe a deep sigh, as I have a two year degree in legal studies.)

    Me: “If that helps you understand it, then yes, I suppose so.”

    (Note: A paralegal is NOTHING like a secretary. NOTHING.)

    He Only Wants The White Meat

    , | Manchester, England, UK | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Food & Drink, Language & Words, Top

    (I am working on a till at a popular fast food restaurant, where we serve fried chicken. One of the more popular drinks is a white chocolate milkshake. I have just finished handing out an order when a father and his son come up to the counter.)

    Me: “Hi there! Welcome to [name of restaurant]. Can I take your order?”

    Father: “Yes. Can I have a white chocolate chicken meal and a fried milkshake?”

    Me: *thinking I’ve misheard* “I’m very sorry; what did you say?”

    Father: *irritated* “A white chocolate chicken meal, and a fried milkshake!”

    (I look at the son, and we both exchange puzzled looks.)

    Father: “Look, it’s just a white chocolate chicken meal and a fried milkshake! What’s so hard—”

    (The son bursts out laughing; the father looks down confused.)

    Father: “What? You did want a white choco—”

    Son: “Dad! Think about what you just said!”

    Father: “I remember! A white chocolate chi—”

    (He suddenly realizes what he has said before, and covers his eyes with his hand.)

    Father: “I didn’t just say that, did I?”

    Son: “You did!”

    Father: “Very sorry about that. A white chocolate MILKSHAKE, and a fried chicken meal, please?”

    A Spelling Konflict

    | Melbourne, VIC, Australia | Language & Words

    (A customer is looking for an icy-pole maker.)

    Me: “Okay, now you said you were after a certain brand name?”

    Customer: “Yes, all I know is that it starts with a ‘K’.”

    (We do not currently stock any icy-pole related products by brands starting with a ‘K’, but we do have some starting with a ‘C’.)

    Me: “Are you sure it wasn’t one of these ones here, miss? We have—”

    Customer: “No, no! I’ll know it when I see it. It definitely starts with ‘K’. Oh look, there it is!”

    Me: “Um… are you sure, miss? That machine is by the Zoku brand.”

    Customer: “Yes, that’s it! Zoku! It start’s with a ‘K’! ‘K’ for Zoku!”

    Speaking American Is A Country Diction In Terms

    | USA | Bigotry, Language & Words, Top

    (We have one really racist customer who calls in every few hours, and asks ridiculous questions about the employees. When he gets answers he doesn’t like, he hangs up. One of our reps decides she’ll deal with him the next time he calls, so we pass the call along to her. It is slow, so a few of us crowd around to listen.)

    Representative: “Thank you for calling [company]; how may I help you?”

    Caller: “None of that s***! Before you help me, you have to pass a test. First of all, were you born in the state you live in?”

    Representative: “No, sir. Now how may I help you?”

    Caller: “That’s strike one. Were you born in the US?”

    Representative: “Yes. Is that all?”

    Caller: “How long has your family been here?”

    Representative: *mischievous smile* “Which side are you inquiring about, sir?”

    Caller: “Excuse me?”

    Representative: “Well I’m assuming you have at least a rudimentary understanding of genetics. Therefore, unless your parents are brother and sister, you should have two sides to your family.”

    Caller: “Who the f*** you think you are, asking me that?”

    Representative: “Well, you’re the one who asked an unclear question, sir.”

    Caller: “And you ain’t smart enough to know I meant BOTH sides of your family?”

    Representative: “Well, sir, to answer your ambiguous question it depends on which part of the family you mean. Both my parents were born in the United States.”

    Caller: “What about their parents?”

    Representative: “What about them?”

    Caller: “YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN!”

    Representative: “Well I really don’t think that’s any of your business, sir.”

    Caller: “I want to make sure I’m dealing with a real American, you hear me? Someone who can speak American good, who ain’t some dummy foreigner, and who ain’t none of them [string of racial slurs]!”

    Representative: “Sir, as someone who majored in language and literature in college, I can guarantee you that I probably speak English better than you do.”

    Caller: “That ain’t good enough! I said American! Not English!”

    Representative: “You do realize that American is a vernacular of English?”

    Caller: “What’s that?”

    Representative: “Why don’t you get a dictionary, and look it up? While you’re at it, look up ‘inbred’ and ‘bigot’, and call back when you figure out why I suggested it.” *hangs up*

    Law And Order: The Next Generation

    | Australia | Family & Kids, Language & Words, Money, Top

    (A customer approaches the counter with curtains in her hand. Her 15-year-old daughter hovers around.)

    Me: “Hello, ma’am! Those curtains will be a total of $45, at $15 a piece.”

    Customer: “What? No, the sign said $5 a piece.”

    Me: “Really? I’m very sorry for the inconvenience, ma’am; I was told not to sell these specific curtains for any less than $15. We are a charity drive, so I hope you understand the pricing.”

    Customer: “No, you don’t get it. These curtains were over there on that rack, and it said $5! You are bound, by law, to sell me these at this pri—”

    (The daughter interrupts.)

    Customer’s Daughter: “Actually, she’s not. The sign beside the curtains could have been referring to any number of things. That said, even if we were to assume that it referred to the curtains themselves, it would only constitute an invitation to treat, which is something very different to an offer. You know as well as I do that both an offer and an acceptance are needed to form a contract. By taking the curtains to the counter, you’re offering, and by disagreeing with an express term of the contract—in this case, the price—this lovely lady who’s merely performing her job is not accepting. Therefore, no contract has been formed.”

    Customer: “I… I… shut up!”

    (The customer storms out of the shop.)

    Me: “Thank you!”

    Customer’s Daughter: “No problem. I just finished a semester on contract law, and she’s done this in the past three stores we’ve gone to. I hope things look up for you!”

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