October Theme Of The Month: Halloween!

Not Just Coffee To Grind

| New York, NY, USA | Bad Behavior, Holidays, Theme Of The Month

(It is the day after Christmas and my parents have recently flown in for the holidays. We are in line in Starbucks, which my parents do not frequent much back home. My elderly parents are telling the barista the order for 4 of us. The fact that my mother needs to repeat the order to the cashier so that it may be rung up is initially lost on her.)

Cashier: “What are you having?”

My Mom: “Oh, no, the other man is taking care of us already.”

Cashier: “Yes, I know, but what are you having?”

My Mom: “He’s already taken care of us, but thank you.”

(A group of three rude women have formed behind us.)

Rude Woman #1: *to my mom, rudely* “They want to know what you already ordered so they can ring you up.”

My Mom: *to rude woman #1* “Oh, I have to repeat my order?”

Rude Woman #1: *rolls her eyes* “Yes.”

(My mom begins to repeat her order but has trouble remembering everything. Her reciting of the order has taken under 30 seconds. Another woman in the group behind us, Rude Woman #2, begins to stamp her feet, making fun of my mother to rude woman #1 and #3, loud enough for everyone else to hear, complete with more eye rolling and many statements of “Ugh, oh my god!” I get sick of hearing this and dart my eyes in her direction. The eye contact shocks her, and she goes quiet.)

Me: *to Rude Woman #2* “I would appreciate you not being so rude during the holidays. If you don’t like your 60 second wait, there is literally another Starbucks a few feet away from this one.”

(Rude Woman #2 is shocked and does not know what to say to me. Instead, she turns to her two other rude cohorts.)

Rude Woman #2: “Ugh! What?!? I didn’t even do anything! Oh my god!””

(The three of them stay quiet after that.)

A Penny For Your Loud Thoughts

| Charlotte, NC, USA | Awesome Customers, Bad Behavior, Extra Stupid, Money, Theme Of The Month

(The place where I work offers ‘extended protection’ plans for select items. The plans are typically 10% the cost of the item, meaning if the item is $19.99, the plan costs $1.99. Because of this, I often just round up to the next whole dollar amount when citing the price of the item, then point out it’s a penny less if they opt to purchase it. It’s never been an issue before now. The customer is a middle-aged woman who has been very pleasant, thus far.)

Me: “It looks as though this item comes with the option of an extended protection plan, beyond that of the manufacturer’s warranty. It only costs $3 and gives you another year in case anything goes wrong.”

Customer: “Sure!”

Me: “Okay!” *adds the plan* “Also, it actually only costs $2.99, so you—”

Customer: *suddenly angry* “What? F*** you! No! I don’t want it! Never mind!”

Me: “…um, okay? But, so you’re aware, that’s less than what I said it would—”

Customer: “You! You said it would cost $3! YOU LIED JUST TO GET MY MONEY!” *jabs her finger towards my chest*

Me: “I promise you, ma’am, that wasn’t—”

Customer: “Shut the h*** up! I said no! You are trying to charge me more than what you said it would cost!”

(At this point, the customer standing behind her speaks up. She is a regular, and just celebrated her 87th birthday the week prior.)

Regular Customer: “Oh, for the love of Pete, you idiot! $2.99 is less than $3, not more! She just saved you a penny! And shame on you, standing here, screaming at her like this! What would your mother think? Now you apologize to this girl, buy the d*** plan, and get out of line! I’m missing my shows because of your shenanigans!”

(At this point, the other customer shuts up, pays for her items, and slinks off without another word.)

Me: *awestruck* “Thank you, for that. That was amazing.”

Regular Customer: *pats my hand and smiles* “It was nothing, dear. Honestly! No respect. That’s what’s wrong with people today!”

(I told my manager about the incident some hours later. The next time the regular came into the store? There was a $50 gift card waiting for her, as thanks from all of us.)

We Love To Deep Dish On Bad Customers

| UT, USA | Bad Behavior, Food & Drink, Theme Of The Month, Time

(It is five minutes to closing at our store when the phone rings. Policy requires that we answer until 11:30 during winter hours. I pick up and my friend and manager stands behind me.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [store location]. What can I do for you tonight?”

Customer: “I need two pan pizzas with sausage and pepperoni.”

(I put the order in on the computer and look to the clock. It is now three minutes to close.)

Me: “All right, sir. I’m going to have to put this in for carry-out, as we close in three minutes.”

Customer: “Uh, no. I want it for delivery.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I can’t do that. We close at 11:30.”

Customer: “Well the internet says you close at midnight. I want delivery.”

Me: “Again, I can’t do that. We have cleanup to do, and we close in one minute. We are also on the winter schedule, and close a half hour earlier than summer hours.”

Customer: “That’s f***ing stupid!”

Me: “Sir, I’m sorry, but I can’t have you speak to me that way. If you like, you can speak to my manager about it. She’s standing right here, and has heard this entire conversation.”

(He settles down. It is now after 11:30.)

Customer: “Can’t you call it carry-out and just bring it to me?”

Me: “No.”

Customer: “Can I send you a picture of the web page?”

Me: “You can, but it won’t make a difference. This is policy, sir.”

Customer: “Fine! F*** you!”

(He hangs up. I smile and put the phone down.)

Manager: “He was pleasant.”

Me: “I love people like that.”

Manager: “Why?”

Me: “They give me stories to tell.”

This Boss Gets More Than Just The Check

| New Orleans, LA, USA | Awesome Customers, Food & Drink, Top

(A young gay couple has become my favorite regulars at the small restaurant where I work. One day as I am talking with them, an older, more conservative-looking man walks past us to the To-Go pickup area. He stops short next to us, and in the same moment, I see one of the young guys look down with a panicked expression at where he is holding his boyfriend’s hand.)

Older Man: “James! I didn’t know you ate here!”

James: *uncomfortable* “Oh yeah, um… it’s half way between work and my… boyfriend’s work, so.”

Older Man: *glances at James’ boyfriend* “Oh.”

(There is an awkward pause, where we all just stare at each other.)

Older Man: “I’m sorry, I’m being rude.” *offers his hand to James’ boyfriend* “I’m Mike, James’s boss. Very nice to meet you. We all love James in the office.”

James’ Boyfriend: “Oh! Nice to meet you too! You know, James is always talking about how much he looks up to you.”

(James is so visibly relieved that he is near tears. The three makes some more small talk before the older man heads off to pick up his lunch. I end up taking his payment and he quietly asks me to pay for James and his boyfriend’s meal as well.)

Older Man: “You know… when I was growing up, I was taught that being gay was bad, a sin. But that young man is the brightest kid I’ve ever known, and I can’t see a d*** thing wrong with him…” *pauses* “…or his boyfriend.”

(He smiles at me and then walks away without another word. To this day, I can’t think about the look on James’s face when I told him that his boss paid for his nearly $100 meal without wanting to cry.)

Half-Life Is Stranger Than Fiction

| OR, USA | Bizarre, Geeks Rule

(The fun center where I work is having a big countdown celebration on New Year’s Eve, and I’m working the arcade. We serve alcohol to adult patrons. As we get closer to midnight, a man and a woman approach the counter. I game in my spare time, and the man in the pair looks exactly like Gordon Freeman from Half-Life.)

Me: “How are you folks today?”

Man: *inebriated* “Oh, look, a Speederman tattoo. Can I get that?” *he should have said Spiderman*

Woman: “Sure.”

(She gives me her tickets, and I give him the tattoo. He is ecstatic about it.)

Man: “Speederman! This is so awesome! I’m gonna put it on!” *starts stripping*

Me: “Sir!”

Woman: “What are you doing?”

Man: “Speederman!”

(She manages to convince him to put his shirt back on, and I had to turn away so they wouldn’t see me laughing. To this day, I refer to that as the New Year’s Eve when I saw Gordon Freeman stripping for Spiderman.)

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