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    Philan-stroppy

    | Wales, UK | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Theme Of The Month

    (My manager and I are approached by a regular customer who is notorious for being just downright nasty and mean-spirited. She doesn’t believe in donating to charity and always thinks we’re barmy for wanting to help others.)

    Customer: “I can’t believe you served that man!”

    Manager: “What?”

    Customer: “I gave him money in the car park! He said it was for food or a bus or something, and he bought beer! You do know he’s a homeless alcoholic, don’t you?”

    Me: “Well, what do you want us to do?”

    Customer: “I can’t believe you served him! You shouldn’t have let him buy alcohol! I feel violated!”

    (The manager realizes she may be angling for a refund of the gentleman’s beer money.)

    Manager: “Unfortunately, ma’am, we are not in control of what happens away from our premises. If he asked you for money and you gave it to him, then that is only your fault. Now, if there’s nothing we can help you with, please have a pleasant Halloween.”

    Customer: “I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU LET HIM ABUSE MY MONEY!”

    (The customer storms out. The manager turns to me.)

    Manager: “I don’t believe for a minute that she gave him money; she’s just trying to cause trouble. She’s probably got a problem with us for being in fancy dress for charity, too!”

    A Long Night Is In The Cards

    | PA, USA | At The Checkout, Health & Body, Money

    (I work night shift at a local chain convenience store, so I see many different people come in. One customer in particular is very drunk.)

    Me: “Hello, sir. How are you doing tonight?”

    (The customer just grunts and puts his items on the counter. I ring them up.)

    Me: “Okay, your total is [amount].”

    (The customer swipes his card.)

    Me: “Sir, your card was declined.”

    Customer: “Bull-s***! I know I have enough. Try it again!”

    (He proceeds to swipe it again and like before, it is declined.)

    Me: “Sir, it’s still declining.”

    Customer: “F***! Again!”

    (This repeats four more times, meanwhile a line has started to form behind him.)

    Me: “Sir, do you have another form of payment?”

    Customer: “I shouldn’t need it, because I have money on my f****** card!”

    (He goes through his wallet anyway. His face falls and then he starts laughing.)

    Me: “Sir?”

    Customer: “I was using the wrong d*** card! Here ya go.”

    (He hands me the card and I run it through. It’s approved, and his receipt prints.)

    Me: “Okay, sir. Have a good night!”

    (I smile as he grabs his bag and leaves. I turn to the next customer in line.)

    Next Customer: “Long night, huh?”

    Me: “You have no idea.”

    That Kind Of Behavior Is Just Not Cricket

    | London, England, UK | At The Checkout, Bigotry, Geography

    (I’m standing in line at a corner shop. The customer at the till is a typical 40-something skinhead, wearing an England football shirt. He’s harassing the cashier because of the difference between the display price of a packet of cigarettes, and what he’s being charged.)

    Customer: “THIS IS F****** RIDICULOUS! IT’S ILLEGAL!”

    Cashier: “I’m sorry, sir, but due to the changes in taxes, we’ve had to increase the price. We haven’t had time to change the signs yet.”

    Customer: “THAT’S BULLSHIT! YOU’RE NOT FROM HERE! WHERE ARE YOU FROM?!”

    (The cashier isn’t ethnically British, but he’s been working at the store for a few years now and is a pretty decent guy.)

    Cashier: “That doesn’t matter, sir. Could you just pay for your items?”

    Customer: “I SAID WHERE ARE YOU FROM?!”

    Cashier: *rolling his eyes* “Sri Lanka.”

    (The customer tries to think of an insult using the tiny amount of brainpower not given over to alcohol and rage.)

    Customer: “…yeah … well your cricket team is s***!”

    (The customer then storms off after paying for the cigarettes. I go up to the register.)

    Me: “Didn’t Sri Lanka just win the Cricket World Cup?”

    Common Sense Bounces Off His Head

    | Rotherham, England, UK | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Criminal/Illegal

    (There have been a number of armed robberies in the surrounding area of betting shops, convenience stores and post offices. We are all pretty on edge when a customer comes in the store wearing a motorbike helmet.)

    Me: “Excuse me, could you remove your helmet please?”

    Customer: “What?!”

    Me: “Could you remove your helmet, please? You’re not supposed to come in the shop with it on.”

    Customer: “This is ridiculous; why should I have to take it off?”

    Me: “I’m not serving you while you have it on. Please remove it.”

    Customer: “If a [racial slur] came in here with their face covered, you wouldn’t ask them to remove it.”

    Me: “Seeing as that isn’t even relevant in this matter, I’ll ignore what you just said. However I will not serve you while you are wearing that helmet. There have been countless armed robberies in the area, so do you really think I feel safe with you walking in like that? Just be glad I haven’t already pressed the panic button.”

    Customer: *shuts up and removes helmet*

    The Maine Difference Between The Accents

    | West Gardiner, ME, USA | Geography, Language & Words, Tourists/Travel

    (I work in a travel plaza in a town in central Maine, fairly close to the Canada/USA border. The plaza is the only sort of gas station, restaurant, and other amenity on the highway for miles, so we get the gamut of travelers, most of whom are weary from long hours of driving. We are encouraged to be as helpful as possible, and to make conversation while ringing up customers.)

    Me: “Did you find everything alright?”

    Customer: “Well, I did in here, but…”

    Me: “But?”

    Customer: “You from around here?”

    Me: “Actually, I grew up in the next town over.”

    Customer: “Excellent. What is there to do in this area?”

    (I offer a few suggestions of popular tourist attractions, and unique local restaurants. The customer gives me an odd look and is silent while I tell him his total. While I’m counting his change, he suddenly explodes. He knocks half his purchases off the counter to get in my face and starts shouting.)

    Customer: “DON’T YOU LIE TO ME!”

    Me: “I’m sorry; excuse me?!”

    Customer: “You stupid b****! There’s no WAY you’re from here! How do I know everything you just told me isn’t all fake? I want to talk to someone who is actually from this area!”

    Me: “With all due respect, sir, what makes you say that?”

    Customer: “You don’t have the accent!”

    Me: “What?”

    Customer: “See! I told you you were lying! If you really grew up here, you’d have that authentic Maine accent! ‘Pahk the arnge cah in the yahd’.”

    Me: *drawling into a thick ‘Maine’ accent* “Ayuh well there sir what you got yourself there is a Boston accent; you ain’t soundin’ like no Mainer, deyah.”

    Customer: “What the f*** did you just say?!”

    Me: *in normal voice* “I said, I worked very hard growing up to learn to enunciate properly, but I can assure you I’m far more authentically Maine than these lobster souvenirs you just spent $10 on and then broke. I’m glad to know my hard work paid off. Have a safe trip now, ‘deyah.’”

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