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    Think Before You Ink

    | Indiana, USA |

    (A customer paying by check tries to use the stylus from the debit machine to fill out her check.)

    Me: “I’m sorry ma’am, but that’s not a real pen.”

    (I reach into my pocket to give her a real one, but she continues “writing” with the stylus.)

    Me: “Ma’am? That’s not a real pen.”

    (She stops and shakes the stylus to get the ink flowing.)

    Me: “Ma’am, you can’t use that to write with.”

    (She continues shaking the stylus and trying to write.)

    Me: “That’s not a pen!”

    Customer: “Hey, this pen doesn’t work!”

    Me: *giving up* “I’m sorry, ma’am, but I forgot to put ink in those pens this morning…” hands her the real pen* “…here, use this.”

    Customer: “Thanks!”

    Desperate For Dessert

    | Quebec, Canada |

    Customer: “Excuse me, do you sell pie here?”

    Me: “Um, no this is [department store]. We sell clothes.”

    Customer: “I don’t want clothes. I want pie.”

    Me: “You can go across the street to the supermarket.”

    Customer: “But I hear that your pie is the best in town.”

    Me: “You’ve obviously heard wrong; we don’t sell pie here.”

    Customer: “Don’t you lie to me! I know there’s pie! Where is it?!”

    Me: “Sir, there is no pie…”

    Customer: “F*** you, are you profiling me? Just because I’m African-American you won’t sell me pie? You’ll be hearing from my lawyer!”

    Me: *giving up* “…OK sir, fine, you’re right. Go downstairs, go out the door and walk across the street. That’s where we sell the pie.”

    Customer: “It’s about time…”

    Good Service, To A Point

    | Victoria, British Columbia, Canada |

    Customer: “I want to return this knife! The lady I bought this from put this sticky stuff around the blade.”

    Me: “Ma’am, all of our knives have the protective seal to keep you from getting cut.”

    Customer: “No way! I saw her; she put this on there! I want a different one!”

    Me: “Ma’am, you’re free to choose another knife but, as you can see, they all have the protective seal on them.”

    Customer: “Well, this is ridiculous – how do you get this off?! You do it for me!”

    (I take the seal off and hand it back to her.)

    Customer: “But look at this! It’s left this sticky residue!”

    Me: “It washes off easily, actually.”

    Customer: “I don’t want to wash anything! That’s stupid!”

    Me: “Don’t you wash your knives before you use them?”

    Customer: “DON’T get smart with me! This is a horrible way to sell a knife.”

    Me: “So, we should sell the knives without a seal or any kind of protection?”

    Customer: “YES! Exactly! It’ll make using it at home easier!”

    Beauty Is Pain… Mental Pain

    | Bradenton, FL, USA | Top

    (I work in the Fragrance and Cosmetics department, and one slow night I had this phone conversation.)

    Customer: “Hi, I bought a lipstick earlier today and I can’t work it.”

    Me: “Um, OK. What exactly do you mean?”

    Customer: “I just…I can’t work it.”

    Me: “All right, well, some of them are packaged weird. What brand is it?”

    Customer: “Lancome.”

    Me: “Those are pretty standard, they work just like any other lipstick.”

    Customer: “But how do I work it?”

    Me: “Um, you just twist the top part in one direction, and the bottom part in the other direction.”

    Customer: “But after I do that, how do I get it back in?”

    Me: “You do the same thing, only in reverse.”

    Customer: “But there’s a hole in the top. Is this the kind I can’t carry in my purse? It would get all over everything.”

    Me: “Um, well, the lid is reusable. You can put it back on the lipstick after you twist it back down.”

    Customer: “Oh, that part can go back on. I see! How clever.”

    I Sense Another Frivolous Lawsuit, Part 2

    , | El Paso, TX, USA |

    (My checkout is right at the top of the escalators, with four kids ranging in age from about 7-13 were playing on them.)

    Me: “Guys, please don’t play on the escalators, you could get hurt.”

    (The kids go away for all of a minute, then return.)

    Me: “I asked you to please stop playing on the escalator.”

    (A woman emerges from a display a few yards away.)

    Customer: “Don’t tell my kids what to do!”

    Me: “Ma’am, then please keep them away from the escalators, its dangerous.”

    Customer: “Don’t tell me what to do!”

    (Just then, one of her little kids falls down the escalator.)

    Me: “You were saying, ma’am?”

    Customer: *storms off*

    Related: I Sense Another Frivolous Lawsuit

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