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    In A Nut Shell: You’re Lying

    | England, UK | Food & Drink, Health & Body, Liars & Scammers

    (I and my husband own a tea room. We only serve drinks and cakes (sweet pie/pastries/donuts, etc.), absolutely nothing hot or savoury. We also do party platters. We are well known in our area for being a nut-free establishment due to my husband’s (the baker) severe allergy.)

    Customer: “I need a refund on the food I ordered for my grandson’s birthday party at the weekend. I have the receipt.”

    Me: “I’m sorry you weren’t happy. What was wrong with the food?”

    Customer: “It was totally unsatisfactory! We paid a lot of money for your food and my daughter was most upset.”

    (I’m looking over the receipt and notice it was a lot of money, over £100. Every food item is listed, with quantity, and it seems a lot for a child’s party. I call my husband to take a look and he remembers talking to the child’s mother on the phone and again when she picked everything up.)

    Husband: “I remember when your daughter ordered it and picked it up. I asked her repeatedly if she had the numbers right. It was a lot of food for a nine-year-old’s party.”

    Customer: “That’s not the point. All of the quiches were undercooked, the sandwiches had the wrong fillings, and the birthday cake had hazelnuts in it. My grandson has a nut allergy. He was rushed to hospital on his birthday. He could have died! DIED!”

    (By now other customers are looking and listening in.)

    Husband: “You’re lying.”

    Customer: “Well, I never! How dare you speak to me like that! I want my money back!

    Me: “Have you looked at this receipt? First, your daughter paid by card. Second, we do not sell anything other than cake. No sandwiches, quiche, sausage roll, nothing. Look around you. Look at our display cabinets. Only cake. And last, there were no nuts of any kind anywhere near your or anyone else’s food here. My husband is so allergic to all kind of nuts that we can’t even eat out anymore. He once served someone who had peanut butter for breakfast and he broke out in a rash and his hand swelled from touching the money. This is a 100% nut free shop. You walked past a sign on the window saying there are no nuts in our food.”

    Customer: “You just don’t want to give me my money back.”

    Me: “You didn’t pay. Your daughter paid with her debit card. If she comes in, with your grandson’s hospital discharge papers, I will refund her. Other than that I’ll assume that she over ordered, spent too much money, regrets it, and sent you to try and trick us. I have your daughter’s details here. If you don’t leave I’ll have to call her and tell her you are making fraudulent claims and I will contact the police.”

    Customer: *recoiling a bit and deciding to leave* “I think I’ll send my daughter in here to sort this out.”

    (As she leaves I realise all our other customers are staring at me.)

    Other Customer: “Do you think I could get a wrongly filled sandwich and a hazelnut birthday cake?”

    (At least that lightened the mood.)