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    A.I.: Alarming Idiocy

    | Burbank, IL, USA |

    (I pick up a phone call transferred from our operator and hear what’s clearly a kid on the phone with parents in the background.)

    Me: “Thanks for calling Burbank ****, how may I help you?”

    Customer: “Hi, my video game system stopped working. I want you to fix it.”

    Me: “Well, what seems to be the problem with the system?”

    Customer: “There’s red lights on it – is that those ‘rings of death’?”

    Me: “The red lights are kind of an error message – when did purchase the system?”

    Customer: “It’s like a year old.”

    Me: “Did you purchase our protection plan?”

    Customer: “No.”

    Me: “OK, you’d have to contact Customer Service for that manufacturer to see if they would still cover the product.”

    Customer: “Oh, I bought it at ****.” *naming our competitor* “Would I call them? Could they fix it? I don’t want to talk to the robots!”

    Me: “Yeah, if you bought it at another retailer you should probably either contact them or the manufacturer–”

    Customer: *interrupting* “I said no robots; I don’t want to talk to the robots!”

    Me: “OK…you can file a claim on the manufacturer’s website, or call the retailer you actually purchased the system from. There’s nothing I can really do for you if you didn’t purchase it through our store.”

    Customer: *whining* “I don’t want to talk to the robots! I’ll have my mom call the robots.” *hangs up*

    Me: “…”

    When Library Virgins Attack

    | Melbourne, Australia |

    Library patron: *hands me a DVD* “Why don’t you have the first season of this?”

    Me: “We probably do, let me check…” *looks it up* “…yes, we do have it. It’s out on loan right now but I can reserve it for you.”

    Library patron: “On loan? What do you mean?”

    Me: “Someone borrowed it.”

    Library patron: “Borrowed it? I don’t understand.”

    Me: “They took it home.”

    Library patron: “Oh. Why?”

    Me: “They wanted to watch it?”

    Library patron: “When are they bringing it back?”

    Me: “Well, it’s due back on the 20th.”

    Library patron: “Yes, but when are they bringing it back?”

    Me: “I… don’t know.”

    Library patron: “DVDs are overnight. They should bring it back tomorrow.”

    Me: “No, DVDs are loaned for three weeks, same as books.”

    Library patron: “Three weeks?! I’ve been watching them the day I take them and returning them the next day! No one told me it wasn’t an overnight loan!”

    Me: “So… shall I put a reserve on this?”

    Library patron: “Yes, I’ll pick it up tomorrow.”

    Me: “…”

    Sounds Like A Pro Bonehead Case

    | Chicago, IL, USA |

    Me: “[Law firm], how can I help you?”

    Caller: “Is this the lawyer’s office?”

    Me: “Yes, it is.”

    Caller: “What’s y’all’s phone number?”

    May We Suggest The Child Protective Services Ride

    | Wisconsin, USA |

    (I am working at the bumper cars at an amusement park, where there is a height restriction.  A guy comes up with his son who is clearly too short.)

    Me: “I’m sorry sir, your son is too short to ride on the bumper cars.”

    Customer: “I just waited for 2 hours in line to go on the bumper cars, and you won’t let my son ride!?”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but there are signs outside that show the height restrictions before you got in line.”

    (The customer then proceeds to grab his son around the throat and lift him up by the neck and holds him up to the sign.)

    Customer: “There! Now he’s tall enough!”

    Me: “Get the h*** out of here!”

    Right Place, Wrong Attitude

    | California, USA |

    (I was the second-in-command at a social services agency. One day, our receptionist asked me to take a phone call from a person who was very upset about the way she was being treated, and wanted to talk to the person in charge.)

    Me: “Hello, I’m ****, how can I help you?”

    Caller: *angry* “Are you in charge there?”

    Me: “Yes, ma’am. I am the most senior person here. What can I do for you?”

    Caller: *yelling* “So you have a boss?”

    Me: “Yes, ma’am.”

    Caller: “I’M NOT TALKING TO YOU! I WANT TO TALK TO YOUR SUPERVISOR!”

    Me: “My supervisor isn’t here right now. I have the authority to help you, ma’am, if you’ll just let me know what it is you need–”

    Caller: “I REFUSE TO SPEAK TO ANYONE BUT YOUR SUPERVISOR! YOU ARE ALL USELESS!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, my supervisor isn’t here right now. I am in charge.”

    Caller: “YOU ARE USELESS!” *hangs up*

    Me: *to the receptionist* “Did she tell you anything about what she needed?”

    Receptionist: “Yes, she said she needed to take anger management classes.”


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