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    Trial By Hire

    | San Bernardino, CA, USA |

    (I’ve just been hired as a cashier and it’s my first day. Halfway through my shift, I get called to go to the manager’s office. In the office is another man.)

    Manager: “Ah, there you are. Thanks for coming over so quickly.”

    Me: “No problem, what’s up?”

    Manager: “This here is Henry. I’d like you to help him find the items on his grocery list and help him with whatever he may need.”

    Henry: “Hello.”

    Me: “Hey. Well, shall we get started?”

    (Henry holds up a fake mustache and begins speaking in a British accent.)

    Henry: “This the best you could hire?! This place is becoming worse every week!”

    Manager, to me: “Can I talk to you outside for a second?”

    Me: “Sure…”

    (We go outside and my manager explains to me that when Henry holds up his mustache, he is British and his name is Hensley.)

    Manager: “Just take him around and help him get his stuff.”

    Me: “Alright, will do…”

    (We start off finding him tea.)

    Me: “Alright, our tea is right over here.”

    Henry: “Let’s see…green tea…green tea…ah. Here it is!”

    (The mustache goes up as he reaches for the tea.)

    Hensley: “I don’t want green tea.”

    (The mustache goes down.)

    Henry: “Must you be so picky?!”

    (The mustache goes up.)

    Hensley: “It isn’t my fault you have such terrible taste!”

    (The mustache goes down.)

    Henry: “Fine, what kind of tea do you want?!”

    (The mustache goes up.)

    Hensley: “I’m not sure.”

    (This goes on for a grueling, long, painful 37 items. After two hours of this and a full cart, we head for the check out.)

    Henry: “Thank you so much for being so patient with us.”

    Me: “Glad I could help you two out!”

    (The mustache goes up.)

    Hensley: “Yes, thank you ever so much for the assistance. Don’t let us hold you up dearie. Off you go…shoo, shoo!”

    Me: “Alright, take care.”

    (I head to the manager’s office, where several co-workers are also waiting.)

    Me: “What the h*** was that for? Some sort of hazing?”

    Manager: “Nope, he comes in every four days and buys the exact same stuff. Good way to test new employees!”

    (So far they’ve tried this on five other new people while I’ve worked here. They all lost their temper and were fired. Henry/Hensley asks for me every few visits and he is a regular customer of mine now. Well, a not-so-regular customer…)

    There’s No Time Like The Present

    | Raleigh, NC, USA |

    (I’m finishing a transaction for a supermarket customer; she’s just handed me her check but I notice an error.)

    Me: “Um, ma’am, if I could just have you fix this part right here–”

    Customer: “What’s wrong with it?”

    Me: “Well, this is 2009, ma’am.”

    Customer: “So what?”

    Me: “Well, you wrote the date as August 29, 3009, ma’am.”

    Customer: “I don’t understand what you’re telling me! I didn’t do anything wrong!”

    Me: “No, of course you didn’t. It was an honest mistake. If you just cross out the ’3′ in ’3009′ and write a ’2′ over it, that’ll do just fine.”

    Customer: “You know, every time I come in here I do EVERYTHING right! Every time! You’re the new girl! You think it’s coincidence that I suddenly start getting the year wrong?! Every time!”

    Not Thinking Outside The Box – Part 2

    | Ireland |

    (I’m on the phone with a customer who had returned an empty box with no tape to our video rental store.)

    Customer: “…I f***ing DID return that tape this morning!”

    Me: “Sorry, but you actually only returned an empty box.”

    (The customer continues yelling at me and calling me names. I patiently wait until he stops.

    Me: “Could you do me a small favour? Go over to your VCR and press the eject button.”

    (The customer curses me out again, but I hear him rest the phone down and then hear a VCR ejecting a tape. There is a silence, then the phone is picked up.)

    Customer: “Um…I’ll be round in ten minutes.”

    Related:
    Not Thinking Outside The Box

    A Wing And A Praline Conveyor

    | Evans, GA, USA |

    Me: “Hello, how can I help you?”

    Caller: “Yes, my daughter is right outside her flight but they won’t let her on. She has a pet bird she’s taking with her as her carry-on, and I KNOW we have it cleared so she can do that!”

    Me: “Okay, ma’am, one moment while I pull up your daughter’s flight information.”

    (I look through the information, and it’s all there. She has permission to take the little pet bird onto the plane as long as she keeps it in her lap. Curious about what the issue could be, I call up the person at the desk at her flight. After a moment of talking, I return to the caller on the phone.)

    Me: “Ma’am, I found out what the problem is.”

    Caller: “There shouldn’t be a problem! My daughter has permission to take her bird on the plane with her!”

    Me: “Ma’am, you can’t take a pet bird on a plane in a cookie jar…”

    Age Is But A (Phone) Number

    | Reynoldsburg, OH, USA |

    (Note: I’m dealing with a male customer in his forties or fifties at the checkout stand.)

    Me: “Do you have a rewards card?”

    Customer: “Yeah, but I don’t have it with me.”

    Me: “That’s perfectly fine. Can I have your phone number?”

    Customer: “Uh…can I ask you a personal question?”

    Me: “Sure?”

    Customer: “How old are you?”

    Me: “I’m seventeen.”

    Customer: “Awesome! I’m gonna go home and tell my wife a seventeen year old asked for my number. Thanks!”

    Also seen on: Not Always Romantic

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