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    , | Ohio, USA | Rude & Risque

    (I am a customer at a restaurant. I’m wearing a shirt from a popular web comic. A woman, also a customer, approaches me.)

    Customer: “I love your shirt!”

    Me: “Aw, thanks! Are you a fan of [web comic]?”

    Customer: “No, I’ve never heard of it, but your shirt is so cute. I just have to have one! Where did you get it?”

    Me: “I bought it online. Do you want the name of the website?”

    Customer: *suddenly huffy and angry* “Excuse me?”

    Me: “Um, do you want the name of the place on the internet that I ordered the shirt from?”

    Customer: “Do you think I’m stupid? Are you trying to trick me? There’s no such thing as a website with shirts on it! The only things on the internet are porn and pedophiles!”

    Me: *completely speechless*

    Nearby customer: “Ma’am, could you please settle down? There are children around, and I’m sure their parents don’t want them hearing about–”

    Customer: “Porn and pedophiles!” *rushes out of restaurant*

    Somebody Failed Listening 101

    | North Carolina, USA | Family & Kids, School

    (While waiting for his to-go food to arrive, a customer is making small talk with me about college.)

    Customer: “So, what are you studying in school?”

    Me: “Psychology, sir.”

    Customer: “Why? That’s a stupid profession. You won’t go anywhere with that! All you’re doing is wasting Daddy’s money!”

    Me: “Actually, sir, I am pay—”

    Customer: “My daughter studied Psychology! She wasted all my money!”

    Me: “Sir, I’m paying for my own college.”

    Customer: “Dads always pay for college!”

    Me: “Mine isn’t. I live alone and pay for my own schooling.”

    Customer: “Whatever. Dads always pay!”

    Plundered Pleasures

    | USA | Rude & Risque

    (I work in a department that deals with mail theft, identity theft, etc.)

    Customer: “This cost me $1000!”

    Me: “I’m sorry to hear it hasn’t arrived yet.”

    Customer: “They stole it! They knew it was the ‘pleasurable things’!”

    Me: “I’m sorry?”

    Customer: “D*** them! They stole the ‘pleasurable things’ to go in my special lady parts! I want you to tell the inspectors that!”

    Me: “I’ve put that in the notes.”

    Customer: “Read it back to me!”

    Me: *reading my notes*She has not received a package of personal items valued at $1000.”

    Customer: “That’s not right! You didn’t put in the bit about my special lady parts!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. I was just summ—”

    Customer: “Tell them they stole the ‘pleasurable stuff’ for my special lady parts!”

    Me: “Okay, it now reads, ‘She has not received $1000 of pleasurable stuff for her special lady parts. She suspects that the postal workers were the thieves.’”

    Customer: “GOOD!”

    Seasonally Maladjusted

    | Marysville, WA, USA |

    Customer: “So, is your spring line out yet?”

    Me: “Yes, it is.”

    (I walk her over to our new spring section.)

    Customer: “Oh, thank you! However, I think this in the wrong section.”

    (She hands me a sage green tank top.)

    Me: “No, ma’am, that is part of our new spring line.”

    Customer: “What? Green isn’t a spring color! Why would you choose this color?”

    Me: “Well, we just get sent the clothes, then we put it out.”

    Customer: “But why would you put out an obviously not spring color? You need to pick better colors next time!”

    This Side Uppity

    | Florida, USA | Food & Drink, Language & Words

    (I work in a fairly ritzy upper-end wine store. We get a lot of customers coming in with partial information about the wine they’re looking for, but we can usually help them find it. Sometimes, not so much.)

    Me: “Can I help you, ma’am?”

    Customer: “Yes, I bought a case of wine here last month, and I’d like another. I don’t remember the name, but I remember where in France it’s from.”

    (Our French wines are organized by the part of France that the wines are from, so this is very helpful.)

    Me: “Okay, perhaps you’ll recognize the bottle when we get to that section. Where’s it from?”

    Customer: “The ‘cote a ouvrir.’”

    Me: “Do you mean Côtes du Rhône, or Côtes du Ventoux, or one of the Côtes appellations in Burgundy, perhaps?”

    Customer: “I know d*** well I bought wine here last month, and the box said ‘cote a ouvrir!’”

    Me: “I’m sure it did, ma’am. That’s French for ‘open this side.’”

    Customer: “Yes! Where do you keep the French wines that say ‘cote a ouvrir?’”

    Me: *gestures to the section we’re in* “About two thirds of these will say that.”

    Customer: “So, it’s not very helpful?”

    Me: “Not as such, no.”


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