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  • Category: Wild & Unruly

    Dead On Arrival

    | San Jose, CA, USA | Tourists/Travel, Transportation, Wild & Unruly

    (My husband and I are flying on a late Friday evening flight on a major air carrier and have just pushed back from the gate when the plane stops. We sit for less than five minutes when the pilot comes on the intercom and announces that we would be delayed slightly.)

    Pilot: “I thought I saw something odd with one of our engines as we started to pull out. It’s probably nothing, but we want to check it to make sure. It will be just a few minutes, folks.”

    (At this point, the passenger behind us, who is dressed in a business suit, starts making comments.)

    Passenger: “I hate this f****** airline! I’ve been late twice in the past few months, and they can’t ever get their act together. Now we’re going to be late again. They need to get this f****** show on the road!”

    (Less than ten minutes go by, with the passenger behind us swearing and commenting loudly and rudely to the man next to him, as well as calling a couple of people on his cell phone and roundly abusing the airline in very foul-mouthed language. Then the pilot comes on the com again.)

    Pilot: “Folks, we’re spraying gas from our number two engine, and I’ve called the mechanic to come look at it and see if it’s serious, or is something that can be fixed. I’m afraid there will be about a half hour delay while we determine what’s going on with the engine.”

    (At this point, the obnoxious passenger behind us calls one of the flight attendants over and starts ranting.)

    Passenger: “Your f****** airline is such a piece of s***! I’ve been working hard for two days and I need to get home to my wife, and now this f****** flight is delayed! My time is valuable, you know!”

    Attendant: “I’m very sorry, sir. We prefer to be safe, and hopefully it will be something that is easy to fix.”

    Passenger: “Yeah, always excuses! You people are such a bunch of f***-ups. My wife is going to be livid when she finds out we’re delayed! Get that f****** mechanic out there now, and get this plane moving! That f****** pilot is making me late! I’ve got places to be!”

    Attendant: “Everyone on this plane has somewhere to be, sir. I daresay that the pilot would like nothing better than to be done with this flight and getting to bed. I and the rest of the crew would like to be getting through with this flight and going off to bed, as well. I’m going to be late going home to my own family.”

    Passenger: “I’m an important businessman, and I need to get home! Your screw-up is what’s the problem, and I’m going to file a complaint against this f****** airline! Who cares about you, anyway? You’re just a bunch of pathetic losers who work for a f***-up airline. I’m never going to fly with your f****** airline again, because I won’t get in until after midnight at this rate! Thanks for screwing up the start of my weekend, a**hole! You can take your f****** airline and shove it!”

    (My husband, at this point, has had enough, and stands up to glower down at the obnoxious businessman. I’ve rarely seen him angry, but when he finally reaches that point, he can be intimidating.)

    Husband: “Look, this airplane has a mechanical problem, and the crew are doing everything they can to resolve it. Stop acting like an a-hole to the attendant, because he’s in the same boat we all are. And I’m SICK of listening to you whine and swear about how you’re going to be late. Fine, we’re all going to be late. I would rather be late landing in our destination than end up DEAD wherever we land when the PLANE FALLS OUT OF THE SKY when the ENGINE SELF-DESTRUCTS! GOT IT? Good!”

    (The attendant smiled and a couple other passengers flashed a thumbs-up at my husband. The obnoxious passenger got very quiet from there on out. The engine turned out to have a serious problem. We exited the plane shortly after the mechanic took a look at the engine, and the airline found us another aircraft. We were several hours late, but we didn’t hear from the obnoxious guy again, because my husband was right. Better to arrive in the middle of the night than not arrive at all!)

    Single Minded Demands

    | USA | Crazy Requests, Family & Kids, Hotels & Lodging, Wild & Unruly

    (Sometimes our sales manager gives some of her friends a certificate for a free night’s stay at our hotel. I am checking in such a stay.)

    Customer: “Hello, checking in? The name’s [Customer].”

    Me: “Right, Mrs. [Customer]. I see that this is a free night’s stay? May I see the certificate?”

    Customer: “Right here.” *hands it over*

    Me: “Okay, I see that’s in order. Here are your keys and sign here.”

    (She signs and leaves, waving goodbye. A few minutes later, she comes back with a teen girl in tow.)

    Customer: “Excuse me, but I’m supposed to have a room with two beds in it. This is a room with only one bed!”

    Me: “I’m terribly sorry; let me check the reservation again.” *checks* “Ma’am, the reservation says that a single bed was booked, not two. Furthermore, I’m afraid we don’t have any more two-bed rooms.”

    Customer: “This is outrageous! I know the owner, you know. You’re just trying to trick me, because I’m a free stay and I’m not paying!”

    Me: “I don’t see why… uh… anyone would do that.”

    (At this point, I start to get nervous, because our sales manager is married to the owner, so it is possible she’s telling the truth. Fortunately, the teen speaks up.)

    Teen: “Mom! Didn’t you say that you were going alone until I agreed to come with you at the last minute? Doesn’t it make sense then that you would book only a single bed for yourself?”

    Customer: “I… I… It must’ve slipped my mind.”

    (Caught, red-faced, she slinked off with her daughter. A few minutes later, I got a call from her room asking meekly for a cot. I got her one, and reported the incident to the managers. Soon, she is their friend no more, and I never saw her again!)

    All Manner Of Meat With No Manners

    | CT, USA | Bad Behavior, Crazy Requests, Food & Drink, Language & Words, Top, Wild & Unruly

    (A customer approaches the deli just as I’m about to shut down the department to clean it. She takes a number and spends the next few minutes looking over the meat selections.)

    Me: “How can I help you today?”

    Customer: “Uh, yes… I would like half a pound of pastrami, please.”

    Me: “Sure thing!”

    (I slice her order and hand it to her. She thanks me and looks at the package. Just as she’s about to turn to leave, she looks at the package.)

    Customer: “Excuse me! But this isn’t what I f****** ordered you stupid piece of s***!”

    Me: “Ma’am, you asked for pastrami and that’s what I cut for you.”

    Customer: *scoffs* “Well, that’s not what this is!” *points at the glass case*

    Me: “Are you pointing at the pastrami?”

    Customer: “Yes, I am, you dumb a**hole! You should be able to f***** see that!”

    Me: “Actually, I can’t. One moment.”

    (I walk around the counter to where she’s standing.)

    Customer: “See, this is what I want.”

    Me: *sigh* “Ma’am, that’s not pastrami you’re pointing at. It’s salami. It clearly says it on the wrapping and on the sign under the product.”

    Customer: “I know that, you f****** idiot!”

    Me: “If you know that, then why did you ask for pastrami? They’re not even close to being the same product. In fact they’re in different color wrapping.”

    Customer: “Hey, stop being an a**hole and give me what I want! You’re making this more difficult than it has to be and you’re wasting my time!”

    Me: “Sure, hold on. Please be advised that you are the one that placed the wrong order which is prolonging your stay here.”

    Customer: “I don’t f****** care! Hurry up and finish my order!”

    (I quickly slice her order as the deli is now closed and I want to go home.)

    Me: “Here you go, ma’am.”

    Customer: “Thank you. Was that so f***** hard?”

    Me: “Yes, it was about as hard as reading a sign that says salami and confusing it with pastrami.”

    Pent Up On Pentagrams

    | Cincinnati, OH, USA | Crazy Requests, Religion, Wild & Unruly

    (I’m stocking an aisle when a customer walks up.)

    Me: “Hi, is there anyth—”

    (She gets a look of horror on her face and quickly walks away. I attempt to call to her but she ignores me. A couple minutes she comes back with a manager in tow.)

    Customer: “This is the girl! This is the devil worshiper you need to fire!”

    (Both my manager and I exchange a confused look.)

    Manager: “What exactly is your problem with her, ma’am?”

    Customer: “She wears a symbol of Satan! She’s a minion of Lucifer!”

    (This is when I remember the star symbol earring I am wearing.)

    Me: “Ma’am, this earring is not a symbol of Satan. It’s just a star. You’d have to flip it a full 180 degrees to be the symbol you’re referring to.”

    Customer: “No! It’s a sign of the devil! You’re a devil worshiper!”

    (My manager and I tried to explain to her the difference between the well-known satanic pentagram and my simple star symbol but she won’t listen. The manager escorted her away from my section and I removed my earring for the rest of my shift.)

    Taking A Swipe At Common Sense

    | PA, USA | At The Checkout, Technology, Wild & Unruly

    (I am working as a cashier during Easter weekend at a popular retail shop. I have a long line but am getting people rung out quickly. A customer in her early 30s is next in line.)

    Me: “Hi, how are you doing today?”

    (The customer puts her items on the belt, and doesn’t say a word to me.)

    Me: *rings up her order* “Okay, that will be [total].”

    Customer: *swipes her card very fast* “Why isn’t this working?!”

    (She swipes the card back and forth quickly. All the while the machine beeps to inform us that it cannot read her card, because she is swiping it too fast.)

    Me: “Oh, you need to swipe it slower so the machine can read your card.”

    Customer: “Oh.” *continues swiping too fast, back and forth* “Your machine is broken! It won’t accept my card!”

    Me: “You just need to swipe it a little slower.”

    Customer: “I AM SWIPING IT! YOUR STUPID MACHINE WON’T TAKE MY CARD!”

    (She proceeds to keep swiping it back and forth just as fast as before and is getting a bit rough with the machine.)

    Customer: “SEE!? IT WON’T WORK!”

    Me: “Would you like me to try and swipe the card back here? Sometimes the front one doesn’t work but mine will.”

    Customer: “All right… Wait, you’re the store who got hacked, right?”

    (I get asked this a lot. During last year’s Christmas shopping season a bunch of credit and debit cards were hacked. People are still cautious about the security breach.)

    Me: “Yes, but we have taken care of the issue and your card is safe to use now.”

    Customer: “I don’t want my card hacked.”

    Me: “As I said, your card is safe.”

    Customer: “I don’t want my information stolen!”

    Me: “Yes, I understand, but we took care of the issue. I’ve used my card here plenty of times since it was fixed and no one has stolen money from me.”

    Customer: “Well, that is because you are an employee. They wouldn’t steal money from someone who works for them.”

    Me: “What?”

    Customer: “[Store] wouldn’t steal money from the people who work for them.”

    Me: “Oh, no. It wasn’t [Store] that hacked into people’s accounts. It was a hacker.”

    Customer: “But I bet you got a huge paycheck during that time when you were stealing money.”

    Me: “Yes, my paycheck was bigger but that was only because there were more hours to go around. [Store] didn’t steal any money.”

    (My manager comes over to see why I was taking so long.)

    Manager: “Is something wrong, [My Name]?”

    Customer: “I’m just making sure your employee doesn’t steal my card information. She asked to swipe it in the card reader behind her because the front one isn’t working. I don’t want my information stolen!”

    (I explain to my manger why I asked to swipe her card with my card reader and why she thinks I am trying to steal her information.)

    Manager: “As my employee said, [Store] didn’t steal anyone’s money. It was a hacker. I myself was a victim of the breach.”

    Customer: “But you work here! They couldn’t steal money from you! You’re just lying so you can get away with stealing more people’s money!”

    Manager: “I assure you, we are not trying to steal your money.”

    Customer: “But your employee is trying to take my card!”

    Manager: “Why don’t you try swiping your card again in the front card reader?”

    Customer: *swipes her card fast again, then a few more times violently* “See?! It won’t work! Your employee must have broken the machine so she could copy my card information into the database!”

    Manager: “Try swiping it a bit slower.”

    (My manager motions over the card reader at the right pace. The customer slides her card again and it goes through.)

    Customer: “It worked! Thank goodness you were here to prevent your employee from stealing my information!” *looks at me* “All you kids are thieves. I hope you get fired for this!”

    Me: “Er… have a nice day.”

    (I hands her her bags and she leaves.)

    Manager: “Don’t worry. You aren’t going to be fired for her ignorance.”

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