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    Category: Technology

    The realm of Technical Support is there to provide expert assistance to those who are not so tech-savvy. Although they still expect you to know what a computer is, and how to turn it on, and to know that you can’t ‘fix the internet’ because it isn’t pretty enough. You have been warned…

    Making A Mute Point

    | IL, USA | Bigotry, Extra Stupid, Technology

    (I am at visiting a game store that I go to quite often, to the point that most of the employees consider me a “regular”. Due to a throat injury I received when I was younger, I am mute. I’m there to see if they have a copy of a game that had, at the time, just come out. There are only two employees working at the time; both are behind the counter as I walk in. Any ‘dialog’ of mine for this story is actually just me scribbling into a notepad and showing it to whoever I am speaking to, as it’s my main method of communicating.)

    Employee #2: “Hey, [My Name], are you looking for something?”

    Me: “Yeah. I was hoping you had a copy of [Game], since I wasn’t able to reserve a copy.”

    Employee #1: “Yeah, we have a few. I’ll show you where they are.”

    (He shows me to where they are, and leaves me to do some extra browsing. He returns to the register, where his coworker is, when another customer approaches them. He appears to be in his late-teens/early 20s.)

    Customer: “Hey, you really shouldn’t encourage her like that.”

    (The customer gestures to me, and isn’t even being subtle about it.)

    Employee #2: “I’m sorry, sir, but I have no clue what you mean.”

    Customer: “That girl over there! If you treat her like a normal person, she might get the wrong idea!”

    Employee #1: “With all due respect, what are you even talking about?”

    Customer: “Don’t play dumb! She’s clearly retarded! Won’t it look bad for business if you let a [slur] wander around? And besides, she’s a girl! She probably doesn’t even play video games!”

    (Unfortunately, people assuming I am either deaf or mentally handicapped because of my inability to speak is a common occurrence. I’ve gotten used to it, but it doesn’t make it any less annoying. Still, I do my best to ignore it. The assumption that I don’t play video games because I’m a girl isn’t as common, but it does come up once in a while.)

    Employee #2: “Please forgive me, sir, but I’m going to have to ask that you not speak about her that way. Not only is she a regular customer, but she’s definitely NOT mentally handicapped. She just can’t speak because of—”

    Customer: “Right! Because she’s retarded! I don’t think it’s safe to let her wander around the store. What if she ends up making someone else retarded?!”

    (All three of us are completely dumbfounded. As mentioned before, I’m used to these sorts of assumptions, but this was a new one.)

    Customer: “So are you going to kick her out or not? People like her don’t deserve to be in here!”

    Employee #1: *visibly angry, and doing his best to keep his cool* “No, we’re not. However, if you don’t stop insulting out customers, we are going to have to ask YOU to leave!”

    Customer: “What the h***, man?! I’m just looking out for your best interest! If you wanna treat that [slur] like she’s a person, that’s your business, but don’t come running to me if it hurts your business!”

    Employee #1: “Okay, that’s it. We tried being civil. Please leave and don’t come back.”

    (The customer is clearly pissed off, but before he can say or do anything, I walk over and slip a note into his hands. He instinctively reads the note.)

    Me: “By the way, you can call me retarded all you want, but at least I’m not the one with their fly unzipped.”

    (He looked down and confirmed that his fly was, indeed, unzipped. His face turned a shade of red, and he then stormed off in what I could only assume was a combination of rage and embarrassment. We still laugh about it to this day!)

    The Color Of Death

    | Canton, OH, USA | Funny Names, Technology

    (A customer comes in looking for a new ink cartridge for his printer.)

    Customer: “Yeah, I was wondering if you could help me find ink?”

    Me: “Sure! Do you know the brand, number, and color you need?”

    Customer: “Yeah, it’s [Brand] number eight cyanide!”

    Me: *pauses for a few seconds, not sure if he’s joking* “Um, yeah. It’s right over here.” *give him the cyan ink*

    Customer: “Great, thanks so much for your help!”

    (I don’t have the heart to correct him as he continues on his merry way!)

    Error: Tuition Not Found

    | NY, USA | Extra Stupid, School, Technology

    (I’m in grad school. I work part-time at the university IT desk.)

    Me: “This is [University] service desk. How can I help you?”

    Caller: “Hi. I’m having a problem with my computer. Could I schedule a time to come in?”

    Me: “Sure thing. What’s your student ID number?”

    Caller: “I don’t have one.”

    Me: “You can find it on the back of your student ID.”

    Caller: “I don’t have an ID.”

    Me: “If you don’t have one of those yet, you can get it from the ID office in [Building]. Do you have any documents from [University]? Almost all documents you’d get from us have your ID at the top.”

    Caller: “No. I’m not a student.”

    Me: “Are you a faculty member, or an alumnus?”

    Caller: “No. I’ve never been to [University]. I just heard you have tech support.”

    Me: “Okay… I’m afraid we only offer support to students and faculty. I have the number of a local repair shop if you need it.”

    Caller: “Will they charge me money?”

    Me: “Probably.”

    Caller: “But you offer your services for free.”

    Me: “… TO STUDENTS. This is a help desk for students of [University] ONLY. We don’t offer support to the general public.”

    Caller: “Why not?”

    Me: “Because we’re not a computer repair shop. We’re a part of [University] and we exist solely to offer tech support to students and faculty. I’m afraid we can’t help you if you’re neither. Would you like that phone number now?”

    Caller: “I don’t understand why you won’t just let me bring in my computer! It would only take a minute.”

    Me: “We can’t service your computer because you’re not a student.”

    Caller: “That’s so mean! What’s so special about being a student?”

    Me: “Tuition?”

    Hashtag STFU

    | Canada | Family & Kids, Technology

    (I’m scooping ice cream when four girls approach, probably in their early teens. One girl doesn’t look up from her cellphone the entire time.)

    Girl #1: “Like, O-M-G. We should totes get ice cream.”

    Girl #2: “We should! Hashtag delicious!”

    (At this point I sort of do a double take as I have never heard anyone use ‘O-M-G’ and ‘hashtag’ in an actual sentence. )

    Girl #3: “Totes hashtag guilty pleasure. Hashtag favourite food.”

    Girl #1: “O-M-G . What flavors should we get? Hashtag decisions!”

    Girl #3: “Hashtag double scoops. Hashtag muffin top! Let’s each get two scoops! We’re soooo bad!”

    (They proceeded to get their ice cream and then I witnessed them all smooshed together outside the store taking selfies with their ice cream cones, all while making a duck face. I needed to take a break after that to regather my faith in humanity.)

    Taking The Credit And The Blame

    | Sydney, NSW, Australia | Extra Stupid, Money, Technology

    (I work in a newsagent that sells prepaid credit for mobile phones. The computer that prints out an individualised code to redeem the credit is unable to perform refunds so it is important that our staff triple checks the transaction before we hit the final OKAY. Sometimes customers would find this a little irritating. It was especially important because two of the different phone companies you could buy credit with had similar names. One was one of the major phone companies in Australia, the other very rarely purchased.)

    Me: “Sir, I would just like to confirm that you would like to purchase $30 credit to use with your [Less Popular Brand] phone company.”

    Customer: “For the last time, yes. How many times do you have to ask me?”

    Me: “I do apologise, sir, but we are required to ask twice per transaction because I cannot give you a refund if you change your mind. I have asked you a third time to be extra careful because you have ordered the [Less Popular Brand] which people often misread as the [Popular Brand] one.”

    Customer: “It is absolutely right. It is 100% definitely the [Less Popular Brand].”

    (I complete the transaction and wish him a wonderful afternoon with a large grin, despite his grumpy attitude. Half an hour later, he storms back into the store, demanding to talk to my manager.)

    Customer: “This d*** b**** sold me the wrong f****** credit! I want a refund! I am going to buy my credit card from the other f****** newsagent in the shopping centre!”

    (He continued to rant for another ten minutes before my manager realised it wasn’t worth the hassle and gave him a refund. Note: he did go to the other newsagent to buy his phone credit but I don’t think he realised it was the same franchise, with the same owners.)

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