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    Spinning A Yarn About Being Sorry

    | Gaithersburg, MD, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Home Improvement, Money

    (A customer brings up a skein of yarn to the register. I see she is intending to use a coupon.)

    Me: “Ma’am, that coupon won’t work on the yarn because it is on clearance.”

    Customer: “Well, that’s not very fair. It’s only a few cents off from the normal price, anyway.”

    Me: “Actually, these are normally about $6, and it’s coming up for $2.64, so it’s cheaper than you would get using a coupon on a regular-priced one. Would you still like to buy it?”

    Customer: “It’s not fair! Why can’t I get my discount!? This is ridiculous!”

    Me: “I’m sorry you feel that way, but we don’t give discounts on clearance items.”

    Customer: “Oh, I bet you are.”

    (I am becoming both annoyed and nervous that the customer is going to have a full-on meltdown over this. I attempt to sound deeply sorry.)

    Me: “I cannot express how bad I feel about this, ma’am. There’s really just not much I can do here.”

    (The customer suddenly starts laughing and smiling.)

    Customer: “Oh, I’m sure. I still don’t think it’s fair, but thank you for having some humor about it!”

    (The customer pays for her yarn and leaves. The next customer in my line has been watching the whole exchange and is just as surprised as me that things didn’t turn ugly.)

    Next Customer: “Is your boss around?”

    Me: “Actually, I’m the boss right now; I’m the only manager here tonight.”

    Next Customer: “Oh, well I would like to compliment the crap out of you! I was going to say something pretty soon if she kept on like that!”

    A Bad Frame Of Mind

    | IA, USA | Extra Stupid, Math & Science

    (I work in a frame shop for a large craft store chain. I take a phone call.)

    Caller: “Yes, do you have black frames?”

    Me: “Yes.”

    Caller: “How much are they?”

    Me: “Well, it depends on the size, style, etc.”

    Caller: “Okay, can you tell me what each of them costs?”

    Me: “Ma’am, there are at least 75 different black frames; you really are going to have to come in and look for yourself.”

    Caller: “Well, I’m not going to come in unless I have some idea how much they cost.”

    Me: “Anywhere between $1 and $70.”

    (The caller hangs up. Later that same day, the caller comes in. I recognize her voice.)

    Caller: “Excuse me; can you tell me where your frames are?”

    Me: “This whole section over here.”

    Customer: “I see you have this frame in a 16 x 20, but I need it in a 20 x 16.”

    (I take the frame from her and turn it on its side.)

    Customer: *huffs* “Well, they should put on the package that you can turn it either way!” *storms off*

    Coworker: “Dude, seriously?”

    Counting On Each Other

    | Mt. Juliet, TN, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Theme Of The Month

    (I am the customer at one register checking out. There is another customer at the other register, who is accompanied by her four-year-old daughter. The daughter is bouncing all over the place, looking at toys and candy while her mother’s purchases are being bagged.)

    Little Girl: “Mommy! Mommy! Can we get this for the new house?”

    (The little girl holds up a miniature basketball hoop and ball.)

    Mother: “No, sweetie. We don’t need it.”

    Little Girl: “Okay!”

    (The little girl continues rummaging through the nearby racks avidly. The cashier hands the mother her receipt.)

    Mother: “Come on, [name]; time to go!”

    (The little girl half turns to look at her mother, clearly still engrossed in the toys.)

    Little Girl: “I need a count of four.”

    Mother: “One… two…”

    Little Girl: “Okay! Coming!”

    Lack Of Register Does Not Register

    | Green Bay, WI, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Top

    (We’ve been having some problems with one of our registers. It is the first one you see when entering the store, and is often assumed to be the one to use. Today, it has been taken apart, and is being worked on by one of my managers. Parts are all across the counter, and several signs are post staying the register is out of order.)

    Me: “You know, I will laugh if a customer comes up and starts unloading their stuff, expecting you to check them out.”

    Manager: “The register is taken apart, the screen is off, and there are three signs saying this is out of order. I doubt anyone will be that stupid.”

    (A customer walks up literally right after my manager says that, and starts unloading and pushing parts out of the way.)

    Customer: “Why is this counter so cluttered!?”

    Manager: “Ma’am, this register is closed; we’re doing maintenance on it.”

    Customer: “Don’t be lazy!” *continues unloading*

    Manager: “Ma’am, please go to the other check-out. [My name] will be happy to help you.”

    Customer: “No! I came to this one, and YOU WILL help me!”

    Manager: “Once again, ma’am, this register is under maintenance. I can not check you out.”

    Customer: “Lazy ungrateful brat! Get your manager!”

    Manager: “I am the manager on duty. One more outburst like that, and I will have you leave the store.”

    (The customer mumbles something, and storms out, leaving her items behind. My manager turns to me.)

    Manager: “Alright, you can laugh.”

    Needs More Grey Matter

    | Seattle, WA, USA | Extra Stupid, Language & Words

    (The craft store is in a part of town near a university. At the moment, friendship style bracelets made of embroidery floss are popular. A young customer in his first year of college comes in.)

    Me: “Hi there! Can I help you find anything today?”

    Customer: “I’m looking for some string to make those bracelets with.”

    Me: “Sure thing! Most people are using this embroidery floss to make them. It’s only 65 cents a piece!”

    Customer: “Okay, great. I need some grey.”

    Me: “Well, most of the neutrals are in this drawer.”

    Customer: “These don’t have names. I need grey.”

    Me: “I’m sorry; this particular brand doesn’t print color names on the labels. It looks like there are five different greys in this drawer here.”

    (I pull out a grey and hand it to him.)

    Customer: “I can’t buy this. How am I supposed to know what color it is if it doesn’t say? Is this grey? It doesn’t say if it’s grey. I need grey.”

    (He leaves.)

    Me: *speechless*

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