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    Failing To Register

    | Bowie, MD, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Bad Behavior, Theme Of The Month, Top

    (It’s early morning and we have just two people working, one person to take money, the other to get the order. This is how we are trained to work, and we function quickly and efficiently this way. A regular customer has begun complaining about the way we run the bakery every day she comes in, and has tried several times to cut in line. On this day, she cuts in front of another customer I’m serving to complain yet again.)

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but she is ordering with me right now. It’ll be just a moment.”

    Regular: *steps off in a huff* “Why are two people helping one customer? You need to open another register.”

    (After the other customer is done, the regular rushes to my register again.)

    Me: “Good morning.”

    Regular: “Why do you need two people to help one person? It’s bad business!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. What would you like today?”

    Regular: *gives her order* “You people have become so slow! You used to be good, but recently you’ve been giving really terrible service.”

    (I want to explain that this is the slowest month of the year, and the management has cut the amount of staff in half to accommodate for the lack of business and ease up on labor costs, but I don’t want to start an argument.)

    Me: *repeats her order* “Would you like anything else today, ma’am?”

    Regular: “No. You need to have more registers open, it’s bad business!”

    Me: “That’ll be [price]; for here or to go?”

    (She gives me the money as she continues to rant about how slow we’ve gotten and then turns away in a huff. Meanwhile, there’s another regular, a city police officer, who is sitting at the table immediately next to my register. She stands up and watches the regular stomp away.)

    Officer: “Somebody woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning.”

    Me: *whispering* “She’s like that every day!”

    Officer: “Really?”

    (I turn and discover that the first regular has flagged down my manager, and is continuing her rant loudly.)

    Me: *still whispering* “Oh, great, now she’s harassing him.”

    Officer: *loudly and in the regular’s direction* “There is nothing wrong with how these young ladies run this business! Leave them alone! If you have a problem with them or this establishment, you can go somewhere else!”

    (All I could do was stare as the regular leaves with her food as quickly as possible; I haven’t seen her since!)

    A Couple Of Annoying Squirts

    | USA | Bad Behavior, Family & Kids, Top

    (Our shop is pretty quiet at the moment. The only customer in it is a twenty-something woman, eating her meal and reading a book. Two boys, about fifteen and thirteen, come in carrying what appears to be badly painted water pistols.)

    Older Boy: Yo, b****! This is a stick up!

    Younger Boy: “Yeah, give us all your money! Empty the register.”

    (At this point, the woman looks up. She gets a very angry look on her face.)

    Me: “Those aren’t real guns.”

    Older Boy: “F***, yeah, they are! Hurry up!”

    (The woman walks over to them and taps the older boy on the shoulder.)

    Older Boy: *turns around* “What the?”

    (He freezes and stutters for words. The woman smacks the other boy’s head with her book.)

    Woman: “What the h*** do you two think you’re doing? Are those squirt guns?”

    (Both boys look shocked. The older one is beet red and the younger one is actually crying.)

    Woman: “Go to the corner, right this instant! I’m calling your mother.”

    (Both boys go to sit in the corner of the restaurant.)

    Woman: “Ah! Apologize to this nice lady first!”

    Both Boys: “S…s…sorry!”

    Woman: “Now go stand in that corner and face the wall!”

    (Both boys obey and stand against the wall. The woman then turns back to me.)

    Woman: “I’m sorry, I really am.”

    (The woman proceeds to call their mother, who shows up five minutes later and hauls both boys out. Apparently, the woman is their aunt. She left us two twenty dollar bills in our tip jar!)

    The Absence Of The Lambs

    | Dunedin, New Zealand | Extra Stupid, Food & Drink

    Customer: “Do you have any mutton pies?”

    Me: “No, sorry we don’t.”

    Customer: “I’ll have one of your mutton pies, thanks.”

    Me: “Sorry, we don’t have any mutton pies.”

    Customer: “Are your mutton pies done in the Scotch style?”

    Me: “No… because we don’t have any.”

    Customer: “Can I grab two of the mutton pies, then?”

    Me: “No, because we haven’t got any. I don’t even think we have any lamb pies either, for that matter.”

    Customer: “Well, can I get a lamb pie, then?”

    Me: “I’ll check if we have any, but I don’t think we do. Hey Shaun! We got any lamb?”

    Shaun: “No! Don’t have any!”

    Me: “Steve, we got any—”

    Steve: “NO!”

    Me: “Seems we don’t have any lamb, sorry.”

    Customer: “Are you sure?”

    Shaun and Steve: *at the same time* “YES!”

    Customer: “Oh, well… can I grab a couple of mutton pies, then?”

    Me: “No. Because we don’t have any. And we don’t have any lamb either. No lamb or mutton pies.”

    Customer: “What do you have then?”

    Me: “Well we have mince.”

    Customer: “I’ll take a venison pie, thanks.”

    Me: “Here’s your pie. Have a nice day.”

    (After the customer leaves, the next customer, who has been there through the entire conversation, steps up.)

    Next Customer: “What an idiot, aye?”

    Me: “Well, it takes all sorts. So, how can I help you?”

    Customer: “Can I grab a lamb pie, thanks?”

    Polly Want A Manner

    | Israel | Awesome Customers, Pets & Animals

    (A man walks in with a parrot sitting on his shoulder.)

    Customer: “Hello!”

    Me: “Hi!”

    Customer: “I would like one bun with sunflower seeds!”

    Me: “Here you go.”

    (The customer pays and takes the bun. He then takes off the sunflower seeds and feeds them to his parrot.)

    Me: *laughing* “Bon appetite!”

    Customer: “Thank you!” *to the parrot* “Say thank you!”

    Parrot: “Thank you.”

    Me: “You’re very welcome!”

    ((The customer leaves, still feeding the seeds to his parrot. A few minutes later he comes back with the bun, which is now completely seed free.)

    Customer: “Do you have a trash can? I don’t need it any more.”

    Me: “Ah… sure, give it here.”

    Customer: “Very good! Goodbye!” *to the parrot* “Say goodbye to the girl!”

    Parrot: “Bye bye!”

    (They both leave, having seriously made my day.)

    Christmas Housing Crisis

    | Vancouver Island, BC, Canada | Bigotry, Holidays, Theme Of The Month, Wild & Unruly

    (For Christmas, the bakery I work at makes elaborate gingerbread houses, complete with some reindeer, Santa, and a few trees. Understandably, the whole thing is rather fragile, and pricey, and we wrap them carefully and display them on top of the pastry case with signs requesting that customers seek help before handling them. A customer walks in and wanders up to the display case and starts to examine the gingerbread houses. As Christmas is busy, my coworkers and I are not paying attention, she ends up breaking the reindeer and some trees in one of the gingerbread houses when she handled it.)

    Customer: “Excuse me!”

    (There’s a line of ten people in front of her, so we politely but quickly ask her to step in line. She shakes the very fragile gingerbread house at us.)

    Customer: “Excuse me! I want to buy a gingerbread house! This one is broken!”

    (As the most senior front end employee, I end up walking to the front and helping her.)

    Me: “I’m terribly sorry. We have others.”

    (I start to reach for an intact one, but she shakes the one she’s holding, breaking it further.)

    Customer: “No! Those ones are probably just as stale as this one. That’s why it broke! You shouldn’t be selling your customers such cheap product.”

    Me: “No, ma’am, it broke because you’ve been shaking it. I can assure you that they were all put together yesterday.”

    Customer: “Real gingerbread doesn’t break like that! I want to speak to your manager!”

    Me: “I’m the worker in charge tonight, ma’am, and I can assure you that, when shaken, gingerbread breaks like most other pastries.”

    (She fumes and reached for another one. I quickly intercept and, after a few bitter words, she allows me to take down the gingerbread house she wants. Before letting her touch it, though, I turned it carefully so she could see that it was all intact. I then ring her in, charging double, which she was quick to jump on.)

    Customer: “What? They’re $45 dollars! I will not pay $100 for a gingerbread house!”

    Me: “No, ma’am, the broken ones are $45. Some people prefer them in bite size pieces. The intact ones take much longer to prepare, so we have to charge extra.”

    Customer: “This f***ing store is a godd*** disgrace! Owned by an Arab!” she’s referring to the head pastry chef who is Filipino* “-and a f***ing c****!” *referring to me, as I’m half-Chinese*

    (She throws a $100 bill on the counter and storms off, almost knocking an elderly man to the ground when she opens the door to leave. I ended up using the extra $50 to buy the other customers hot drinks, and passed out the broken gingerbread to accompany the beverages. Needless to say, we got some pretty amazing tips that night. The customer came back to complain later when the owners were around, but the head chef’s husband gave her a proper telling off when he heard her refer to his wife as an Arab.)

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